A ceasefire between Israel and the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip went into effect at 6 AM Israel time on Thursday and appeared to be holding as evening approached.
Even so, few expected the calm to last very long, including Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Israel's top military leaders.
Politicians from across the political spectrum were joined by army officers in leveling heavy criticism at the Olmert government, saying they could not understand providing Hamas with an opportunity to regroup and rearm for future violence.
Olmert, meanwhile, warned Hamas that the truce was the terror group's last chance to change its ways and give up its quest to destroy the Jewish state. The prime minister has issued similar warnings in the past, while consistently failing to back them up with action.