“First, Israel is facing threats from a set of enemies who combine medieval theocratic worldviews with 21st-century weaponry — and are no longer organized as small bands of militiamen but as modern armies with brigades, battalions, cybercapabilities, long-range rockets, drones and technical support. I am speaking about Iranian-backed Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic militias in Iraq and the Houthis in Yemen — and now even the openly Hamas-embracing Vladimir Putin … The second danger I see is that the only conceivable way that Israel can generate the legitimacy, resources, time and allies to fight such a difficult war with so many enemies is if it has unwavering partners abroad … But Biden can sustainably generate the support Israel needs only if Israel is ready to engage in some kind of a wartime diplomatic initiative directed at the Palestinians in the West Bank — and hopefully in a post-Hamas Gaza — that indicates Israel will discuss some kind of two-state solutions if Palestinian officials can get their political house unified and in order. This leads directly to my third, deep concern. Israel has the worst leader in its history — maybe in all of Jewish history — who has no will or ability to produce such an initiative.” Tom Friedman in the NYT (Gift Article): I Have Never Been to This Israel Before.

+ Watching the Spread: “The U.S. carried out an airstrike on a weapons warehouse in eastern Syria used by Iranian-backed militias, in retaliation for what has been a growing number of attacks on bases housing U.S. troops in the region for the past several weeks.”

+ After much diplomacy and White House pressure, Israel has agreed to four hour humanitarian pauses, CIA head in Qatar to discuss hostage strategy, IDF says its forces raid Hamas military base in central Gaza City. Here’s the latest from BBC, CNN, and NBC.