Israel got to treat its enemy like a separate state rather than an internal territory except Israel had Ehud Olmert as PM at the time and he could not spend the political capital appearing to undo Arial Sharon’s policies. Gaza had the opportunity to not care about Israel any longer, they could just say “Death to the Zionist Entity, We Gazans will only deal only with the Egyptians -- Israel and Palestine are those terrible places where bad things happen and we’d rather not be involved. Death to the Zionist Entity, everyone chant with us, Death to the Zionist Entity.” Israel had a chance to seal up its border with Gaza, cut off all roads and utilities and let tourism to Gaza go through Cyprus to Egypt. A Muslim Brotherhood government took over Egypt for a while which for Hamas was the girl who got a way and all could have been fine.
The real loser has and always has been Mahmoud Abbas, as the formerly elected President now President of the Palestinian Authority he had an opportunity to strike a real peace deal with Israel. He was free to have land swaps, define the right of return as the return to Palestine rather than Israel and make Ramallah the capital because he could argue “We Palestinians need a state now but we can’t argue we are Palestine without Gaza, so let’s get a state and worry about the rest later.” All he would need beyond this is some fudge language that If Gaza and Palestine reunited for fifty years then Israel would have to negotiate on the topic moving the Palestinian capital at the request of a reunited Palestine at which point, Israel would have to provide some amount of shutup money. I’m against a truce, there is a truce now and it is worthless. A formal truce needs to be either a peace treaty in disguise or the basis of a permanent peace. If Hamas can’t see the justice of Israel having access to her lands and her historic capital then let Hamas state they just want out of the war on Israel because they’d rather be a state than a war zone and because they no longer wish to have political union with Palestinian government in Judea and Samaria and all outstanding issues not affecting Gaza are now the problem of the PA. Anything less is not worth the bother.