Secretary of State John Kerry spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, amid rising fears that the confrontation between Israel and Hamas could escalate to new levels of bloodshed. But Kerry might also want to talk to his Foggy Bottom predecessor about how the last round of violence in the intractable conflict was defused.
When Israel and Hamas last fought in Gaza in November 2012, President Barack Obama dispatched then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to broker a ceasefire. As Israel called up 75,000 reservists for a possible ground invasion, Obama was “understandably wary” of the U.S. taking a direct mediation rol...
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