If Israel does indeed follow through with this, this could be a major breakthrough for getting humanitarian aid to Gaza Palestinians:
JERUSALEM — While still insisting that its blockade of Gaza is essential to its security, the Israeli government is now shifting its position, “exploring new ways” of allowing goods to reach the coastal enclave, an Israeli official said Thursday.
Describing the latest thinking within the government on the condition of anonymity, because he was not authorized to discuss it publicly, the official said Israel was determined to have every ship heading to Gaza inspected to prevent the smuggling of rockets and other weapons. But at the same time, he said, the government wanted to facilitate the entry of civilian goods.
The government’s new flexibility follows a week of unrelenting international outrage over Israel’s commando raid on a flotilla of pro-Palestinian activists, which left nine dead, and reports that senior officials in the Obama administration were calling for a “new approach” in Gaza and had concluded that the blockade was untenable.
President Obama added to the pressure on Israel in an interview with Larry King that was broadcast Thursday night. While declining to condemn the raid, he said, “What’s important right now is that we break out of the current impasse, use this tragedy as an opportunity so that we figure out how we meet Israel’s security concerns, but at the same time start opening up opportunity for Palestinians.”