Israel-Hamas Cease-Fire Offers No Guarantees

The possibility of peace feels remote to the residents of Sderot.

"We are living governed by war," Revital said. "This war has not been two days or one month. It's been eight years. Everything we know surrounds it. No one can understand it — even people in Israel don't understand it.

"From our perspective here, we don't see any choice but to go to war," she said. "If I thought there was someone reasonable to speak to, I would say let's go ahead and talk. But it's not possible to have a lasting agreement with Hamas."

Shalom Halevi, spokesperson for the mayor's office, agreed.

"Hamas has broken all agreements in the past. When a group decides that it wants to destroy Israel, what do you think they're doing during the cease-fire? They're taking the next few days to prepare for another attack."

Some Sderot residents, however, appreciated the few hours of calm so far.

"The important thing is that there is calm right now," said Eli Amar, 33. "Whether or not it lasts does not depend on us as citizens, it depends on both sides."

Halevi however believes that the cease-fire is a mistake and that Israel and the international community should begin military activities within Gaza.

"If we give in to the terrorists like Hamas, if we let terror succeed here today, then tomorrow it will be all over the country," he said. "Then it will be all over the world. The international community must wake up."

Ruth Margolin is media coordinator for the Israel Project and a resident of Sderot.

She acknowledges the suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza. "Kids are the same. Mothers are the same," she said. "But when you choose Hamas you choose terror. With terror, people will be killed on both sides."

She said, "I really hope the next few days will be quiet."

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