Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Gaza Rockets Damage Buildings, Cars, Home In Southern Israel; Israel Calls Up Reservists

Gaza Rockets Damage Cars And Buildings

The barrage of rockets fired on Israeli civilian populations by Gaza terrorists continued Wednesday morning, after the ceasefire was breached the previous afternoon.
Shortly after 11 a.m. four rockets fell on the Eshkol Regional Council area, with two of them landing in a local community.

Light damage was caused by the missile volley to several vehicles and buildings, and at least one local resident was suffering from shock after the close and powerful blasts.
Not long after, several minutes before 12 p.m., another two rockets slammed into the Eshkol area, with shrapnel from the strike causing light damage to the wall of a shelter. A thorn field in the community due to the rockets, with Border Patrol forces aiding in putting out the blaze.
Just after 12 p.m. another rocket hit an Eshkol community, causing more damage to a local home. A direct hit was recorded on a home in the Hof Ashkelon regional council roughly 30 minutes later; there were no injuriesin the attack.

Likewise three rockets fired over the course of the night were located in communities in the region, with two of them having caused damage to buildings.
According to the IDF Spokesperson Unit, roughly 80 rockets have been fired by Gaza terrorists since the ceasefire was breached on Tuesday around 4 p.m.
Well over 30 of those rockets were fired over the course of Wednesday morning, and with no sign of the rockets slowing up the current total appears well on its way to reach the 100 mark soon.

Rocket Hits Home In Ashkelon Region, Israel Targets Hamas Muhammad Deif

The Times of Israel is liveblogging events as they unfold through Wednesday, August 20, the 44th day of Operation Protective Edge. Hamas breached a truce on Tuesday afternoon with a rocket salvo at Beersheba, prompting Israel to quit the Cairo negotiations on a long-term ceasefire. Rocket fire and IDF counter-strikes intensified later Tuesday and into Wednesday.

Rocket makes direct hit on a house in Hof Ashkelon

A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip makes a direct hit on a house in Hof Ashkelon.
There were no immediate reports on injuries

Fatah armed wing claims rocket fire on Ashkelon

The Abdul Qader Husseini Brigades, an armed wing of the Fatah movement to which Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas belongs, claims responsibility for firing two rockets at Ashkelon this morning.

80 rockets fired from Gaza since truce broke down, IDF says

The IDF says more than 80 rockets have been fired into Israel since yesterday afternoon, when Hamas fired a salvo at Beersheba and indirect truce talks between Israel and Hamas broke down.
Thirty projectiles were fired since midnight, the military says.

IDF Recalls 2,000 Reservists As Truce Unravels

The IDF on Wednesday recalled 2,000 reservists who had already been drafted and released during Operation Protective Edge, after Palestinian rocket fire at Israeli cities triggered renewed hostilities Tuesday night.

Meanwhile, IDF tanks and armored personnel carriers were massing along the border with the southern Gaza Strip as the army boosted its forces in the area, Israeli media reported.
At the height of Operation Protective Edge, which began on July 8 and later included a ground incursion into the Gaza Strip, the IDF called up some 86,000 reservists. Most have already been demobilized or were set to be released in the coming days.

On Tuesday afternoon, shortly after rocket fire commenced, Israel pulled its negotiating team out of the ceasefire talks with the Palestinians.
The rocket fire resumed around eight hours before a temporary truce was set to expire at midnight. Then, a heavy barrage of dozens of rockets rained down on Israel’s southern towns as well as the Tel Aviv and Jerusalem areas during the night.
Israel retaliated by renewing its airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, reportedly targeting the home of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades commander Muhammad Deif and killing his wife and infant daughter.

Gaza Terrorists Renew Rocketfire In Early Morning

After terrorists in the Hamas enclave of Gaza breached the ceasefire Tuesday eight hours before it ended at midnight, firing a total of 50 rockets on Israel over the course of the day, Wednesday opened with a continuation of the terrorist aggression.
Just around 7 a.m. rocket sirens were sounded in the Eshkol Regional Council, with two rockets evidently hitting open ground. Roughly half anhour later a rocket exploded in the Sedot Negev Regional Council.
The IDF carried out airstrikes on Rafah near Sinai around 8 a.m. in response to the ongoing rocket attacks, according to Palestinian Arab sources quoted by Walla!.
In the late night hours of Tuesday night, two rockets exploded outside of a community in the Eshkol region; no injuries or damage was caused by the attack.
That attack followed a salvo of three rockets during the night, also on the Eshkol area, and also leaving no injuries or damages.
The IDF carried out airstrikes on 30 terror targets in Gaza over the course of the night, bringing the total number of targets hit since Gaza terrorists breached the ceasefire on Tuesday to a reported 60.

Liberman Warns Of 'War On Attrition' With Hamas

After Hamas renewed its rocket fire on Israel and talks in Cairo over a framework for a ceasefire were put on hold, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman said Israel must avoid being dragged by Hamas into a “war of attrition” in the Gaza Strip. In a Facebook post, he called on Israel to overwhelm Hamas.

Liberman said the latest ceasefire framework, which didn’t lay the groundwork for a peace deal and included no guarantees for “an unequivocal commitment by the Palestinians to keep the peace now and for all eternity,” set up Israel for a disadvantageous “war of attrition.”

Liberman criticized the Israeli government for playing into Hamas’s hands by allowing it to set the pace of the clashes.

“I hope everyone has realized by now that the policy of ‘quiet met with quiet’ means that Hamas is the instigating party and the one to decide when, where, and how much it fires on the people of Israel, while we content ourselves only with retaliation — which, strong though it may be, is still just a reaction.”

He said Hamas not only controlled the severity of the clashes, but also the “timing that is most convenient for it to disrupt the lives of Israeli civilians in general and residents of southern Israel in particular.”
He warned, “It happened yesterday, it’s happening today and it could happen again on September 1 [when school starts] and on the eve of Rosh Hashanah,” the Jewish New Year.

Denouncing Israeli politicians who have proposed unilateral moves to end the violence as “suffering from absentmindedness,” Liberman noted that Israel was “still paying to this day” the price for its unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip in 2005.

“Even if, God forbid, [Meretz party leader] Zahava Gal-on was serving as prime minister and [Hadash party MK] Dov Khenin as defense minister — even they would have eventually ordered an expansive operation to topple the rule of Hamas,” said Liberman.
“That’s why, when the security of Israeli civilians is seriously discussed, it must be understood that there is no option other than a determined Israeli move with one purpose — defeating Hamas.”

Most Israelis were stunned Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 19, when rocket fire suddenly erupted from the Gaza Strip against Beersheba and Netivot, after they had been lulled into a sense of false security by the suspension of Hamas attacks for 135 hours. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon sent the air force straight back into action to bomb “terror targets’ across the Gaza Strip, and recalled Israel’s negotiators from the indirect talks taking place with Hamas in Cairo through Egyptian intermediaries.
After a month of tough fighting and painful losses, Israelis were aghast to find themselves dumped back in the same old routine, which their leaders had vowed Operation Defensive Edge would end once and for all.
By midnight Hamas had fired around 50 rockets in a steady stream across most of Israel, including Greater Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
So what went wrong?

Monday, Aug. 18, a senior intelligence source asserted that Netanyahu and Ya’alon were satisfied with the Cairo talks, because their outcome would refute their critics, ministers and security chiefs alike, by bringing Hamas to its knees.
Asked how this would come about, the source repeated the mantra heard day after day during the fighting: Hamas is looking for a way out of the conflict and wants to end hostilities, he explained. That is what we are banking on.
AMAN chief Maj.Gen. Aviv Kochavi is believed by some cabinet sources to be the author of this prescription, to which the prime minister and defense minister have stubbornly adhered, against all the evidence to the contrary. They therefore held back from inflicting a final defeat on the Palestinian fundamentalists.
Even the pro-diplomacy Justice Minister Tzipi Livni faulted them by warning repeatedly that negotiating with terrorists was a bad mistake. You have to fight them and beat them hollow, she said.

Yet each time Hamas violated a ceasefire – and it happened six times in all – there was the excuse that its leaders were divided against themselves, and the heads of the Gaza faction were reasonable and logical individuals who would prefer to stop firing rockets at the Israeli population - if only it was only up to them.
Even when the rockets started falling Tuesday around Beersheba, Netivot, Ashkelon, Shear Hanegev and the Eshkol district, some knowledgeable Israelis were still saying that Hamas knew nothing about it.

Last Saturday, 30,000 demonstrators from southern Israel and their many sympathizers turned out in Rabin Square, Tel Aviv, to make sure the government understood that their tolerance for the same old routine was at an end and the military must be allowed to root out the Hamas peril once and for all.
A sense of defiance is palpable in the streets of towns within regular rocket range from the Gaza Strip and even farther afield. Contrary to orders from the IDF Home Command, directions to open shelters have been issued by the mayors of Ashkelon, Ashdod, Rehovot, Rishon Lezion, Tel Aviv, Ramat Gan, Gedera, Kiryat Malachi, Sderot, Netivot and Beersheba. Some have cancelled public events and entertaiments.
Parents of places next door to the Gaza Strip, who spent the summer holidays holed up indoors or away from home, now say they will not send their children to school at the start of the term in two weeks, if the present situation does not change radically.

Also see:

No comments: