Over the weekend, more than 400 Hamas rockets came flying into Israel. The Iron Dome, Israel's missile defense system, shot down the majority of them but not all, leaving nearly a dozen Israelis injured. Diplomatic talks have been underway for days but nothing seems to be happening. Egypt has taken the side of Hamas and the rocket attacks aren't stopping. This has prompted Israel to prepared ground troops for a potential invasion of Gaza.
Thousands of Israeli troops are massed near the Gaza border, meanwhile, awaiting an order to invade should Israeli leaders decide to widen the operation.
"The Israeli military is prepared to significantly expand the operation," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting.
Although President Obama announced last week that Israel has a right to defend itself against Hamas rocket attacks, he is cautioning the Jewish State against a ground war, implying it would be risky.
The U.S. and Britain on Sunday warned about the risks of Israel expanding its air assault on the Gaza Strip into a ground war, while vigorously defending the Jewish state's right to protect itself against rocket attacks.
The remarks by President Barack Obama and Britain Foreign Secretary William Hague were part of a diplomatic balancing act by the West as it desperately seeks an end to the escalating violence without alienating its closest ally in the region.
"Israel has every right to expect that it does not have missiles fired into its territory," President Barack Obama said at a news conference in Bangkok at the start of a three-nation visit to Asia.
"If that can be accomplished without a ramping up of military activity in Gaza, that's preferable," Obama said. "It's not just preferable for the people of Gaza. It's also preferable for Israelis, because if Israeli troops are in Gaza, they're much more at risk of incurring fatalities or being wounded."
Hamas has continued to place rocket launchers near mosques and school yards, which has naturally resulted in the deaths of many civilians.