The United States expects the current phase of Israel's ground operation in Gaza to last until January. After that, the fighting will become less intense.
This was reported by CNN.
US officials believe that the current phase of Israel's ground operation will last several weeks, and then Jerusalem will move to a less intense, hyper-localized strategy that narrowly targets specific militants and Hamas leaders.
According to them, the United States has warned Israel that Jerusalem cannot repeat the destructive tactics it used in northern Gaza and must do more to reduce civilian casualties.
The US also informed Israel that as world public opinion increasingly turns against their ground operation, which has killed thousands of civilians, the amount of time Jerusalem has to continue fighting as it is rapidly decreasing.
"US support for Israel is non-negotiable, but Israel risks replacing a tactical victory with a strategic defeat if it does not do more to prevent civilian deaths," US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said.
Israeli officials say that part of their ultimate goal is to weaken Hamas to the point where the group will never be able to repeat an attack like the one on October 7.
That goal, one senior US official told CNN, is unlikely to be achieved by the end of the calendar year, and Israel is expected to continue to pursue it in the next phase of the conflict, which US officials view as a "long-term campaign".
As a reminder, Hamas militants invaded Israel on October 7. The terrorists began killing and kidnapping both military and civilians. Soon after, Jerusalem announced the Iron Swords Operation and shelled terrorist sites in the Gaza Strip.
On November 24, a temporary truce began between Israel and Hamas to release prisoners. At the same time, the parties agreed to a ceasefire for four days but decided to extend it for another two days on the condition that the militants release more hostages.
On December 1, Israel resumed hostilities in the Gaza Strip. The IDF stated that Hamas had violated the terms of the ceasefire.
Author – Anastasiya Glotova, 06/12/2023