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Israel, Hamas trapped over prisoner exchange

Israel won't compromise on the return of the bodies of IDF soldiers, and Hamas Gaza leader Yahya Sinwar won’t compromise on a large-scale prisoner-exchange deal.
Islamist Hamas movement leader Yahya Sinwar (C) shouts slogans and flashes the victory gesture as he takes part in a tent city protest near the border with Israel east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza strip on March 30, 2018 to commemorate Land Day.
Land Day marks the killing of six Arab Israelis during 1976 demonstrations against Israeli confiscations of Arab land. / AFP PHOTO / Mohammed ABED        (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images)

Israel and Hamas are caught up in an endless circle, made up of two conflicting narratives, each set in stone. The vectors of these two forces leave both Israel and Hamas trapped in a blood-soaked alleyway with no apparent way to get out.

Both are ready for a long-term solution to reduce tensions in Gaza. A perfect example of this was the speed with which Hamas leaders pleaded with every possible mediator between them and the Israelis on July 20 to help stop the exchange of gunfire and reinstate the cease-fire. Similarly, there was the speed with which Israel had enough of its formidable wave of airstrikes and returned its sword to its sheath.

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