In the wake of yet another disruptive and deeply disturbing ceasfire in the middle east, all sides are demanding a return to normality so that 'we can get on with our lives'.
The protagonists, arms manufacturers, aid agencies and world media are all facing similar challenges. A senior BBC spokeswoman bemoaned the latest unscheduled and abrupt ceasefire. 'Our journalists don't know whether they are coming or going. You have to think about their families, and project managers'. Aid workers have reported an inability to sleep in the unnatural quiet, with the 'suspense killing them'.
Forces on all sides are calling for a cessation in inhostilities on humanitarian grounds. A member of Hamas, speaking via secure link from an underground bunker stated, 'Our fighters find the silence, the waiting, terribly stressful.' Meanwhile over in Jerusalem a tearful Isreali commander admitted. 'We need a respite in the ceasefire to ensure our guns are still working properly. It can be really hard to justify lobbing one back if we have nothing to retaliate to. Nothing in our training has prepared us for this.'
World leaders agree that the ceasefires are unsettling all round. 'When they go quiet we know they are in trouble.' An un-named prime minister added soberly, 'Yes it usually means they have lost or broken their equipment, so we have to sell a new shipment of arms before it is too late. You almost need eyes in the back of your head these days, particularly now that Russia is 'going through a phase' and being embarrassingly needy.' A senator concurred 'Yes, it is very worrying. We got the Israeli kids an Iron Dome for Christmas and already they aren't playing with it. What happens when they get bored? Do we have to give them nukes? Now Libya wants attention. Sheesh.'