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With just 16 hours left in the current cease-fire agreement, Carol speaks with Daniel Kurtzer, a former Ambassador to both Israel and Egypt.
Beginning the interview with the question on the minds of many, Carol asks "Why can't everybody just sit in the same room and hash things out?"
Kurtzer explains, "Israel as you know, Carol, does not accept to negotiate with Hamas and Hamas is part of the Palestinian delegation and so the Egyptians have found a way through this 'shuttle diplomacy' of conveying messages back and forth. It also allows the Egyptians a chance to fine-tune some of what they're hearing so they can act as a real intermediary. Until now the Egyptians have done a pretty good job, but the crunch time is yet to come."
Kurtzer later stresses that "Until the cease-fire becomes concretized it's wise for both sides to continue to prepare. The Israelis cannot let their guard down and Hamas clearly wants to see some political gain from this, so you're going to see these kinds of various dimensions played out over the next 24 or 48 hours."
Asked if this time the situation is “different,” Kurtzer says "No it's not been different yet. This is the 4th engagement between Israel and Hamas since 2006 and unless there's some fundamental change in the relationship between Israel and the Palestinians generally, we're fated to see this recur and what I’m talking about is to get to the idea of a two state solution. It may not be possible to use this confrontation to immediately get there, but unless we can find a way back to the table and to resolve the underlying dispute this is gonna look like the Rocky movies, uh, sequel after sequel of violence and counter violence until both sides are exhausted to the point where they have to negotiate peace."