Israel’s environment minister, Gilad Eran, warned that Israel could launch an offensive against Gaza in response to Hamas’ firing of nine mortars—two of them containing phosphorus—plus a rocket into southern Israel. The threat comes as Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas work on another round of peace talks after years of stalemate. Eran is not a key member of the Israeli cabinet, and unlikely to have a big influence on Netanyahu. Still, the increasing attacks, in protest of Israeli settlements, can’t be helping the negotiations. The Israeli prime minister said the talks were making a little progress, though, “it’s a lot of work.” President Obama gave the leaders, working with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, a one-year deadline to reach a deal.