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As Hamas loosens its terms, can Biden pull Netanyahu toward deal?

Israel and Hamas appear to be narrowing on terms for a temporary cease-fire and prisoner exchange.

Biden works the angles on Netanyahu

The Biden administration wants a temporary cease-fire by March 10, the start of Ramadan, despite Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s interest in keeping the war going.

A pause in the fighting can’t come soon enough. The body count in Gaza is now at 28,000, mostly women and children. More than 70% of Gaza’s buildings and infrastructure have been leveled. Food and medical assistance is at a trickle, and there are now the high risks of widespread disease and starvation. Netanyahu is threatening an assault on Rafah, where roughly 1.4 million displaced Gazans have overwhelmed the city of 300,000.

US President Joe Biden is working the angles to inch Netanyahu toward a pause. It’s a ground game, a kind of workaround on Netanyahu, often agonizing and incremental, but it’s showing progress.

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