Followers of this blog will remember how I noted two weeks ago following the Grad rocket attack on Beersheva that the danger of war was mounting rapidly in southern Israel. Early this morning, another Grad rocket hit Beersheva. Grads were also fired at Ashkelon and Ashdod–the latter one hitting within 500 meters of our house. All schools were closed in the south today and will continue to be closed until next week. At 3:30 pm this afternoon, a bomb exploded in a backpack in a phone booth near the central bus station in Jerusalem, timed to go off as a bus was passing. One person was killed, and 31 people were injured (mostly aged 15-31), 5 critically. The united call from Israelis late this afternoon is that Israel needs to act decisively to stop these attacks.
The IAF and IDF hit targets in Gaza yesterday–in one action, 4 members of a terror cell firing Grads were killed. In another, Hamas members had set up a mortar beside a residential building and begun firing shells. Return mortar fire from the IDF injured apparently hit some of those firing the mortars and also killed Palestinian civilians in the the residential building. Expect an outcry from the international community–but not about Hamas using its own Palestinian population as human shields.
Israel feels like it is on the verge of war.