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Growing US-Israel rift over Gaza war timeline: will Netanyahu budge?

Sources told Al-Monitor that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken conveyed a different timeline than what Israel had in mind to end the war.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) shakes hands with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken during statements to the media inside The Kirya, which houses the Israeli Defence Ministry, after their meeting in Tel Aviv on October 12, 2023. Blinken arrived in a show of solidarity after Hamas's surprise weekend onslaught in Israel, an AFP correspondent travelling with him reported. He is expected to visit Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as Washington closes ranks with its ally that has launche

TEL AVIV — Even as Israel expands its ground operation into the southern Gaza Strip, the Biden administration is marking the start of 2024 as the target date for ending Israel’s massive military campaign in Gaza, according to Al-Monitor’s sources.

This is not a deadline, but a target. During a war target dates can shift, but the Americans clearly believe that Israel is close to exhausting the extensive ground invasion it launched Oct. 27 and should switch to more focused efforts to bring down Hamas.

"The gap between us and the Americans is around three weeks to a month — nothing that cannot be resolved,” a highly placed Israeli diplomatic source told Al-Monitor on condition of anonymity.

Weeks apart

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