So if there is to be a ground offensive, it looks like they're amassing to keep the military track going, to give a threat to Hamas, to say they're serious, to, as they say to me, cocking the trigger, ready to pull it, if Hamas does something like kill a huge number of Israeli civilians here in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.
And from Hamas' point of view, they have also shown something, that they can now reach the distances to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. So will that be enough for both to get off the exit ramp? We'll see.
RADDATZ: Just quickly, Christiane, could you tell us diplomatically what's going on? The reaction of Egypt, the U.S., Turkey, what's going on there?
AMANPOUR: Well, in short, there's a huge amount of effort to de-escalate this. The United States trying to get Egypt and Turkey to pressure Hamas to de-escalate this and to seek a way out. And also, the Israelis saying they're working very hard, as well, to try to make sure this is resolved diplomatically. So in short, it's a two-track situation right now.
RADDATZ: Still very serious. Thank you very much, Christiane and Alex.
We're joined now by Senate Armed Services Chair Carl Levin of Michigan and House Homeland Security Chair Peter King of New York.
Thank you both for joining us this morning.
KING: Thank you.
RADDATZ: I'm going to start with you, Senator Levin. How serious is the situation in Israel?
LEVIN: Well, it's very serious, and Hamas has obviously made it serious. They've decided that they're going to attack Israel with rockets, and Israel has decided, as every country I think would decide, they're going to defend themselves.
RADDATZ: And do you believe this will escalate?
LEVIN: It could escalate. And I think the potential is there. However, President Obama and others are doing their very best to see if they can't turn Hamas' attacks off. And the role of Iron Dome here should always be remembered. It's a very critical weapons system. It's a defensive system.
RADDATZ: Which protects...
LEVIN: Protects Israel against these rockets. It's had a 90 percent success rate. And the president and Congress here are entitled to, I believe, a lot of credit for providing that system to Israel. It's a very effective system.
RADDATZ: Congressman King, I want to ask you whether you believe this will turn into a ground war, and should it? Is it the only way to stop those rockets?
KING: Well, let me start off on a bipartisan note. I fully agree with Senator Levin. Israel -- Israel is our main ally in the Middle East. Israel has the absolute right to defend itself. All of us, Republicans and Democrats, should stand with the president in supporting Israel.
And, quite frankly, I'm not the militarily expert. I was a Spec 5 in the Army. That's as far as I got. But having said that, I think Israel should do whatever it has to do to defend itself. Obviously, the president is going to work diplomatic channels. But I'm not in a position -- nor do I want to -- be second-guessing what Israel has to do. Obviously, no one wants a ground war, but Israel has to determine what it has to do to preserve its security.
RADDATZ: Senator Levin, President Obama has been in touch with both sides. What do you think of the response by the Egyptians?