We are watching with grave concern the stepped-up rocket attacks from Gaza on southern Israel over the weekend, and we call upon the Palestinian factions responsible to cease fire immediately. We are pleased to see reports that such a step may be in the works. The consequences of continuing these attacks could well be another round of violence and conflict that will bring further suffering to both sides.
The permanent solution to these attacks must come from the political process, not military action. Israelis and Palestinians must accept the rights of each people to a national home of their own living in peace and security. Provoking Israel with ongoing rocket attacks will not settle this dispute, rather it will only lead to further suffering and bloodshed on both sides. It is time for leaders to lead and for cooler heads to prevail to stop these rockets attacks before the conflict escalates.
Ultimately, this latest flare-up of violence is another indication that, now that we are past the U.S. election, the Obama administration must re-engage affirmatively in the coming months in efforts to resolve this conflict and to exercise the active and assertive American leadership necessary to do so.
Residents in Israel's south have lived under the constant threat of rocket attacks for far too long. They will only enjoy the peace they and all of Israel deserve when a resolution to this conflict has been reached between the Palestinian and Israeli people.