An Israeli soldier killed, 4 injured in clash with Gaza Palestinians
Paratroop Sgt. Nadav Rutenberg, 20, from Moshav Ramat Hashavim, was killed Friday night, Jan. 11 during a firefight with Palestinian terrorists near Mefalsim outside the Gaza Strip.The incident began with a Palestinian ambush which caught the Israeli patrol by surprise. It developed into a fierce firefight using tanks, mortars and helicopters.
In recent weeks, Palestinian terrorist activity from the Gaza Strip has become increasingly bold, ranging from explosive devices planted on the border fence to missile and mortar fire on Israeli towns and military patrols.
DEBKAfile's military sources report that Israel's responses have been too restrained and cautious to stem the escalation. Only last week, when the mortar attacks were aimed more precisely at IDF bases in the Eshkol district and Nahal Oz, did the Air Force start striking Hamas targets directly, hoping to put a stop to the new spate of attacks. Even then, targets were selected scrupulously to avoid casualties among Hamas fighters and keep the showdown under control.
Unfortunately, restraint never works in this part of the world, particularly when it involves Israel and those who are sworn to destroy the country.
However, Hamas, Jihad Islami, and the Islamist groups operating under the al Qaeda-linked Jalalat umbrella took encouragement from Israel's military restraint and redoubled their assaults.
After studying IDF responses and its mode of operation for safeguarding the Gaza border fence, they switched tactics. Friday night, instead of another attempt to plant explosive devices on the fence - like the many which ended in the Palestinian assailants' deaths, they prepared an ambush.
When the paratroop brigade stationed at the central sector of the Gaza Strip was alerted to another explosive-planting attempt in the Mefalsim sector, a small force went out on reconnaissance, only to be come under a heavy automatic fire and anti-tank rockets from Palestinian positions commanding the sector and mortar fire from further inside the Gaza Strip. The Israeli unit brought in tanks and assault helicopters to douse the Palestinian outbreak.
Two points seem obvious:
1. The violence coming from Gaza is increasing, along with Israeli deaths and casualties.
2. If something isn't done to stop it, there will be more Israeli deaths and casualties.
And now, along comes Egypt - warning Israel not to take any action in their defense:
Mubarak Warns Netanyahu: No New Gaza Incursion
Classic. Typical. Expected. And only in Israel:
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak warned Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Thursday against "any new assault" on Gaza, CNN quoted state-run Nile TV as reporting. Mubarak and Netanyahu met in Sharm el-Sheikh to discuss the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
Egypt's state press said that Mubarak emphasized to Netanyahu "the necessity for Israel to reconsider its position and policies, and to take the initiative and conduct procedures that will build trust with the national Palestinian authorities."
A statement on the Prime Minister's website said that "Netanyahu reiterated that he believes that a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians is possible provided that the latter are willing to end the conflict." Netanyahu "asked President Mubarak to act to persuade the Palestinians to move to direct, intensive and serious negotiations -- in which all core issues will be raised -- forthwith."
How dare PM Netanyahu suggest that the "Palestinians" should be willing to end the conflict. Doesn't he know their stated objectives? Of course he does, but he, along with the rest of the world must ignore any and all violence coming from the 'PA" and the surrounding terrorist groups and pretend that they really want peace. The entire world plays the same game, despite glaring evidence that it is, indeed, a game.
In other news from around the world, at least someone else is asking probing questions about the mysterious and growing concern around the bird and fish deaths:
Fish and Bird kills: are we getting answers or being placated?
Personally, I'm not quite ready to jump into the various conspiracy theories quite yet. At this point, I'd rather put my money on government ineptitude in terms of figuring out what is causing these deaths. However, the ridiculous "explanations" offered by our leaders - these feeble attempts to explain the situation - do indeed feed substance into various conspiracy theories:
Readers looking for reassuring evidence that the recent massive die offs of fish and birds will find comfort in knowing that such events are historically not all that uncommon.
Also, why are we treated with absurd explanations by our government when the truth, if it is indeed the truth, would be more convincing?
The official government explanation for public consumption, as reported by the corporate media, is that the massive bird kill in Arkansas was the result of loud noises created by New Year’s celebratory fireworks.
As to the estimated 100,000 fish found dead within days of the bird deaths just 125 miles away in the Arkansas River, and another 500 blackbirds found dead in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana, those incidents could be completely unrelated, noted Mr. Graves. That sentiment was echoed by government officials as well.
Unfortunately, that point of view rested on the foundation that such events haven't been reported from around the world, where there were no fireworks, or similar weather conditions. As mentioned in yesterday's post, in the face of similar events around the world, with varying weather conditions and geography, the official explanations insult one's intelligence. This aspect alone is fueling many conspiracy theories.
Although the entirety of “massive kills” listed below could have innocuous explanations, I believe that we deserve to know the truth. We deserve better from our investigative agencies, making sure that they are on top of things, while making sure that they are not merely the domestic authoritative arms for global restructuring.
Based on my research, I doubt that we will be told the whole truth behind each of these deaths, unless, of course, someday, someone, releases a report like the 1994 GAO accounting of the Dugway sheep kill incident. By then, though, will it matter? I sense that if we continue to accept the inane explanations, fail to ask questions, or continue on our path of blissful ignorance, it is us who might become the next statistic.
As mentioned before, it is going to be very interesting to follow this story and see where it leads. Also, at this point, the only plausible explanation proposed is the one involving the shifting magnetic pole, as posted yesterday. Here it is again in case anyone missed it:
Moving Magnetic North Pole May be the Cause of Mysterious Bird, Fish and Crab Deaths