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Hamas No Loser, Israel No Winner
Military and security experts believe that the high death toll and a trail of destruction left by 22 days of Israeli massive air, sea and land bombing have failed to guarantee Israel a victory.
"After 22 days of non-stop attacks, the Israeli military juggernaut failed to force Hamas and other resistance groups into surrender," Lebanese military expert Walid Sokaria told IslamOnline.net.
Israeli troops began on Sunday, January 18, a gradual withdrawal from the bombed-out Palestinian territory after a deadly 22-day offensive that killed more than 1300 people, nearly half of them civilians.
Announcing a unilateral ceasefire a day earlier, Israeli Premier Ehud Olmert claimed the onslaught has reached all its goals.
Israel has been inconsistent about the objectives of its deadliest offensive ever against Gaza, starting from ousting the Hamas-led government to ending rocket firings.
Security analysts, and even some Israeli parties, believe none of that has been achieved.
"The war did not stop rocket firing, did not end Hamas rule in Gaza and did not even succeed to free captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit," noted Sokaria.
"So what kind of victory can Israel claim?"
Israeli intelligence chief Yuval Diskin admitted Sunday that the war failed to wipe out the network of tunnels operated by Hamas, another key objective.