Egypt worked this week to formalize a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas after both sides virtually ended all military operations in response to what one analyst called an attempt to “calm down the criticism” from within.
The cease-fire in Lebanon seemed to gain traction this week as Israeli troops continued their gradual withdrawal from the south and prepared to begin lifting the air, sea and land blockade of the country. Lebanese and United Nations troops took up positions in southern Lebanon to enforce the truce that last month ended 34 days of Israeli-Hezbollah fighting.
Although Israel has reportedly agreed to curtail its policy of targeted attacks against Palestinian terrorists to foster the chances of a limited cease-fire that would halt two weeks of violence, Israeli analysts were skeptical it would work.
"It lasts a couple of days until a crazy sets off a bomb," said David Newman, chairman of the department of politics and government at Ben Gurion University of the Negev.