First things first. According to the New York Times’s Isabel Kershner and others, the latest round of violence between Israel and the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization in Gaza was “set off by Israel’s assassination of a senior Islamic Jihad commander on Tuesday.” This is not strictly true.

That senior Islamic Jihad commander, Baha Abu al-Ata, was behind a series of rocket attacks on the Israeli city of Sderot less than two weeks ago. That, and other recent attacks against Israel, is what got him killed; the confrontation, therefore, predates his assassination. It’s just that the earlier rocket attacks didn’t make much news outside of Israel.

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