A senior Israeli defense official departed for Cairo on Sunday to discuss via Egyptian mediators an extension of a ceasefire with Gaza's Hamas rulers that currently exists only in name.
Gaza-based terrorists have been increasing their rocket and mortar attacks on southern Israel over the past month, though much of Israel's leadership insists that the truce deal struck back in June remains in place.
Prior to leaving for Cairo, Gen. Amos Gilad, head of the Defense Ministry's political-military bureau, told The Jerusalem Post that Hamas desires a continuation of the ceasefire for the time being, and that Israel is inclined to oblige.
Gilad said that Israel knows Hamas remains dedicated to the destruction of the Jewish state, but indicated that Israel's current leaders would rather wait Hamas out than defeat the terror group.
That policy is based on the assumption that Hamas is not faring well, either in its management of Gaza or its quest to seize control in Judea and Samaria (the so-called "West Bank").
However, observers argue that similar assumptions were made just before Hamas won a landslide victory in the Palestinian Authorities 2006 parliamentary election and again before the group seized control of the Gaza Strip.
The longer Hamas is given to work out its kinks, the better the chances of it accomplishing its goals.
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