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Israel has launched its bloodiest attack on the Gaza Strip in decades. 

Israel has laid the blame at Hamas' feet, citing the rocket attacks by Hamas into Israel as the primary reason behind its air strikes on Gaza.

Israel claims that the attack was a defensive operation against the clear aggression from Gaza. The main objective was to destroy the whole infrastructure, the military system and the whole organisation. 

Is there any way out of the faltering peace deals and deadly violence in Gaza?

Sixty-four per cent of Israelis want to negotiate and to sort out this burning question. Hamas claims that they are also willing to negotiate but wants Israel to release their prisoners and to remove their settlers from the border.

The timing of the attacks on Gaza is highly significant. It comes just a month before Israel holds parliamentary elections.

There may be many motives including the desire to inflict a crippling blow on Hamas' infrastructure and to be seen as strong on defence in the upcoming Israeli elections.

Maybe it is the desire to showcase Israel's strength after a less than stellar performance in the recent campaign against Hezbollah. 

As Israeli warplanes pound Hamas, Inside Story asks: what are the real objectives in Gaza and is peace in the Middle East more illusive than ever?

This episode of Inside Story aired on Sunday, December 28

Source: Al Jazeera