An informal ceasefire was reached between Israel and Hamas before the weekend. But as we have come to learn from bitter experience, “ceasefire” means “we cease, they fire” – and in this case “fire” means both rockets and literally, shooting fire.
Just read on and watch your blood pressure:
First, 2 rockets were launched by Gaza terrorists at Israel immediately after Shabbat. The IDF responded with airstrikes, unfortunately not hitting any terrorists:
Israeli jets bombed multiple targets belonging to terror groups across the Gaza Strip on Saturday night, the army said, after a rocket was launched at southern Israel from Gaza earlier in the evening.
“The IDF, using fighter jets, attacked 10 terror targets in three compounds belonging to the Hamas terror group in the Gaza Strip. Among the targets that were attacked were two sites used to manufacture and store weapons and a military compound,” the army said.
According to the Hamas-affiliated Shehab news agency, the planes struck sites in Gaza City’s Shejaiya neighborhood, in the Nuseirat refugee camp and outside the city of Khan Younis.
The army said the airstrikes were in response to the rocket attack on Saturday evening, as well as violence that was “led and approved by the Hamas terror group” over the weekend, which included people “throwing bombs and explosive devices, attempting to breach the fence, damaging security infrastructure and setting fire to land in Israeli territory with incendiary kites and balloons.”
Earlier on Saturday night, the army’s Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted a rocket fired at southern Israel by a terrorist group in the Gaza Strip, the military said.
A second rocket was also launched around the same time, but appeared to fall on the Palestinian side of the Gaza border, according to the Israel Defense Forces.
The rocket launches appeared to be the first violation of a fragile ceasefire in effect since Wednesday morning, but came after a weekend of intense violence along the Gaza border.
Note that highlighted sentence above. ALL ceasefires with Hamas are fragile a priori. The only reason that Hamas agrees to them is in order to regroup and rearm. Why Israel agrees to them is a mystery that I have yet to understand.
Why are our leaders so weak and malleable? Why not continue to hit Hamas until it i wiped out completely? Why let this absurd situation continue, where Hamas and its allies can hold the entire south of Israel hostage? We should all be out in the streets demanding action from our government.
Here is the rest of the action from last night to this morning:
And here we come to the worst part of Gaza’s aggression against Israel: they want to burn us down. We build and they burn.
As Shoshanna Jaskoll writes:
Here is Adele Raemer, who lives in a kibbutz on the border with Gaza:
The Western Negev is BURNING, and in the same way that the government of Israel obligates the Hamas to take responsiblity for preventing rocket fire, they MUST be made to take responsibility to prevent Incendiary kites that are setting the Negev ablaze (English follows Hebrew)
Please watch and share.
The English begins at 2:41.
The damage wrought by these incendiary kites and more sophisticated, chemical-laden balloons, has been devastating. Already last week I wrote about the destruction caused to the Beeri Nature Reserve. Over Shabbat, agricultural fields as well as the Carmia Nature Reserve suffered the worst blaze since the fighting began, with over one-third of the reserve destroyed:
Arson investigators at the Carmia reserve said the fire was most likely set by a fire kite, or possibly a balloon filled with chemicals that dripped flames along the area, Hadashot news reported.
By evening, teams of dozens of firefighters and aircraft finally manged to bring the flames under control, but not before some 2,000 to 3,000 dunams (500 to 740 acres) of fields and parts of a nature reserve adjacent to Kibbutz Carmia were destroyed.
In total, firefighters battled three large fires and several smaller ones along the Gaza Strip border, all believed to have been started by incendiary kites flown from the coastal enclave.
Officials at the Israel Nature and Parks Authority estimated that at least one third of the Carmia reserve had been destroyed.
They said it was likely the flames had caused massive damage to both the flora and fauna in the reserve.
Residents worked alongside with firefighters and soldiers to try to contain the fires that have become almost daily occurrences since the start of the “March of Return” protests along the border at the end of March.
Officials said that since the start of the protests the kites had set over 270 fires, destroying some 25,000 dunam (6,200 acres), or more than a third of all the land adjacent to the Strip.
The scale of destruction is mind-boggling when taking into account the tiny size of the area involved. But have you heard a word of protest from all those environmentalist NGOs who worry so much about the state of the earth unless it is owned by Jews? In fact have you heard any protests at all from any country about the massive arson being committed by Palestinians against Israel? (Answers on a very small postcard).
As for the “cease” part of the “fire”
Firefighters were also working to gain control of a blaze near Kibbutz Be’eri, which borders the central Gaza Strip.
Earlier Saturday, an additional fire broke out in fields belonging to Kibbutz Nir Am, also along the northern Gaza Strip.
On Thursday, firefighters battled similar brush fires between the Kissufim and Ein Hashlosha kibbutzim that authorities suspect were caused by firebomb-laden kites flown across the security fence by Palestinians.
Local residents told Israel Radio they were concerned that they would not be provided compensation for the damage, as the burden for proving they were victims of a terror attack fell on them.
The fires have caused tens of millions of shekels of damage.
Zionist Union MK Eitan Brosh told the radio that lawmakers from his party would tour the area Sunday and work to provide the residents with solutions to their ongoing distress.
The army meanwhile is struggling to find a solution:
Military planners have begun implementing new measures to combat the assaults, including options drawn from the IDF’s responses to rocket launches and other terror attacks.
The IDF was also using drones to try and take down the kites.
Col. Nadav Levaneh told Hadashot news that so far drones operated by the IDF had managed to bring down more than 500 kites.
To my (admittedly untrained) mind, using drones against fire-kites is like taking a sledge-hammer to a very small nail. Why not just dump plane-loads of very wet sewage any place where Gazans are seen congregating near the border? It will accomplish two things: drive the terrorists back, and make them we enough that they won’t be able to ignite their incendiary kites and balloons.
And if one or two get through the border we’ll be able to smell them a mile off.