This time the pretext was Israel’s targeting of 2 terrorists in Gaza on Sunday, according to the IDF Spokesman’s blog:
In a joint IDF- ISA operation, IAF targeted Tala’at Halil Muhammad Jarbi (b. 1989), a Global Jihad operative from Rafah, and Abdullah Muhammad Hassan Maqawai (b. 1988), a member of the Ashora Council of the Martyrs of Jerusalem, a Gaza-based Global Jihad affiliate. For many years Tala’at was involved in extensive terrorist activity, targeting Israeli civilian and security forces, including rocket firing, weapon manufacturing, and other terrorist activities in the Gaza Strip. He was a senior operative involved in the planning and execution of an attack along the security fence on 18.6.12, during which an Israeli civilian was killed. He had also been planning an complex attack intended to take place along the Sinai border.
The IDF will not tolerate any attempt by terrorist groups to target Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers, and will continue to operate against those who use terror against the State of Israel. The Hamas terror organization is solely responsible for any terrorist activity emanating from the Gaza Strip.
In retaliation Hamas fired between 30-50 rockets at Israel’s southern communities:
Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip fired more than 30 rockets and mortars — with some Israeli media outlets reporting over 50 rockets — into southern Israel early Monday morning, causing damage to a residential building.
Most of the shells landed in open areas and there were no injuries reported. However, one of the rockets landed in a petting zoo in the Eshkol region, killing two goats and wounding nine other goats.
Unusually, Hamas claimed responsibility for some of the attacks, and said it would hit back at Israel whenever Israel strikes at targets in Gaza. The IAF hit two terrorists in an air strike on Sunday, killing one of them and badly wounding the other.
Channel 10 quoted a military official in the Southern Command as saying that the firing of such large numbers of rockets was made possible by the use of sophisticated launchers capable of shooting several rockets at once. According to the report, the launchers were remotely operated, making it unnecessary for the launchers to be present at the site and allowing them to remain hidden from the Israeli military’s sight.
Residents of the Eshkol Regional Council were instructed to remain in their safe rooms or shelters. After several hours, the IDF said the area’s residents could leave their shelters, but advised they should remain 15 seconds away from a secure area.
I’m sure that helped them celebrate Simchat Torah in a joyous manner. Not.
The IDF responded rapidly to this barrage:
An army source said that a tank directed fire at a Hamas position hidden inside a mosque located in southern Gaza. The source added that Hamas often uses “religious sites as cover for its terrorist activities against Israelis.”
Consider the ghastly irony of this reality in which we live: While Israelis are celebrating a Jewish festival in their synagogues, or, in the case of southern communities, being prevented from doing so by Hamas rocket-fire, Hamas uses its own sacred buildings as cover from which to shoot at Israel.
Let’s all not hold our breath waiting for any kind of condemnation by human
rights wrongs associations of this abuse of religious sites by Hamas and its associates.