One reason Hamas was unable to respond to the Israeli attack on Gaza with a massive rocket attack on Israel, as they had threatened, was that the Israeli Air Force had taken out almost their entire rocket supply in the first few minutes of the air assault:
The Israel air force demolished two key Hamas war systems in the first 4 minutes of its massive offensive on Gaza Saturday morning, Dec. 27, DEBKAfile's military sources report. The bombers destroyed six mosques in Gaza City which held the terrorists' biggest weapons arsenals and scores of "beehives" containing launchers primed for the simultaneous, automatic release of hundreds of powerful rockets against Israeli cities.
These launchers were rigged for precision-targeting in Israeli town centers. They were operated by a unit of 300 special Hamas operatives trained for their mission at Syrian military bases under the instruction of Hizballah rocket specialists.
The aerial offensive knocked out 80 percent of the rockets Hamas had prepared to launch and saved Israel's southern cities. The Palestinian Islamists were left only with inferior projectiles. Therefore, 98 percent of the hundreds of missiles they managed to fire in the 22-day war missed their targets and exploded in open ground.
Meanwhile, Egyptian and Israeli warships are searching the Red Sea for an Iranian freighter believed to be laden with a 60 ton resupply of rockets for Hamas. Hamas fighters have also broken the cease-fire by firing on Israeli soldiers.
It's difficult to understand what Israel thinks it has to gain by stopping its offensive before it has taken out all of Hamas' leadership. As soon as they are able they will be right back firing rockets at Israeli civilians. For the Israelis the cease-fire is an indication of their desire to curtail the killing, for Hamas it's an opportunity for them to rearm and continue their unending intifada against Israel at a later date. It doesn't make much sense for Israel to just play along.RLC