Argument: Hamas was never committed to ceasefire, consistently violating it
Steve Huntley. "Israel's surgical strikes aim at reasonable goal". Chicago Sun Times. December 30, 2008 - it's clear Hamas caused the Gaza crisis. Though you'll read news stories using neutral terms in saying the informal cease-fire between Israel and Hamas "collapsed" or "expired," the simple truth is that Hamas announced --announced! -- last week it was ending the truce and stepped up rocket attacks on Israel.
I say "stepped up" the attacks because in truth, the terrorists never stopped targeting Israeli civilians. During the six months of this so-called cease-fire, 215 rockets were launched from Gaza into Israel. And a month ago, the Israelis discovered a tunnel from Gaza to Israel, dug no doubt with the intention of kidnapping an Israeli soldier or civilian.
Hamas, a rabid hater of Israel and Jews, was never committed to a meaningful break in violence, only to a tactical lull in hostilities to solidify its hold on Gaza while it rearmed. Among the Israeli objectives in the current offensive are 40 tunnels between Gaza and Egypt used to smuggle weapons and explosives.
"Israel's Gaza Defense". Wall Street Journal. December 29th, 2008 - "Hamas did agree to a six-month cease-fire earlier this year, during which the rocket attacks declined in number but never completely stopped."