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Why Israel Is Bombing Gaza

· Transfer of control over border-crossings between Gaza and Egypt and between Gaza and Israel to the Palestinian Authority government of Salam Fayyad.

· Until the elections to the Palestinian parliament and the presidency in January 2010, Gaza is to be run by a civilian administration appointed by the government in Ramallah.

· Augmented Egyptian supervision of the border between Gaza and Egypt.

· The return of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Such an agreement will require international and regional support. Countries such as Turkey, Egypt and Saudi Arabia can play an important role. Syria, if it uses its influence over the Hamas leadership that is comfortably hosted by Damascus, can win points toward any future discussions with the United States and Israel.

In the absence of such a package, the fighting in Gaza will not end. Israel has no reason to end it.

Ephraim Sneh, a former member of the Israeli cabinet and deputy defense minister from 1999 to 2001 and from 2006 to 2007, is chairman of the Strong Israel party.

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