UPDATE (11:00 pm Tuesday): Make that 8 rockets and 8 mortars. (10:47): Another alarm for Netivot; (10:41) Grad rocket hits Netivot; (9:43) Mortar fired at Eshkol region.
Picture below is a section of the Grad rocket that just hit Netivot:
UPDATE (9:15 pm Tuesday): Make that 6 Qassams and 7 mortars. (7:04): Missile hit Negev–only now reported; (8:54): Mortar fired at Eshkol region.
UPDATE (8:15 pm Tuesday): Make that 5 Qassams: (5:47) Asheklon Chof; (5:05) Ashkelon. The latest statistic is that the Iron Dome successfully intercepted 56 out of 73 missiles over the weekend–a success rate of 76%. In other words, 1 out of every 4 missiles fired got through.
UPDATE AND TODAY’S BLOG:
So now we have another supposed “ceasefire.” What this means is that the Hamas sponsored terrorists in Gaza have “won” again by showing that Israel and the IDF do not have the stomach for a fight. As senior Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar boasted yesterday: “Statements issued by the Zionists indicate that they are not interested in making matters worse in Gaza.”
Nevertheless, the continued bluster from Israeli officials this morning and afternoon has been deafening.
Internal security minister Yitzhak Aharonovich threatened this morning: “There is an understanding that they stop firing and we stop firing. The minute they stop we have no interest to continue. But if another targeted assassination like last Friday’s is necessary, we will carry it out and enter another round, if need be. We need to learn our lessons so that next time the response will be harder and more painful.” Sure thing Yitzhak. Just like you learned the lessons when exactly the same barrages of missiles struck Israel in August and October of last year.
Education Minister Gideon Saar postured the following during a visit to Beersheba this afternoon (where schools have been closed since last Friday): “As a sovereign state, Israel cannot accept such rounds of violence. In the current round the IDF pounded the terror leaders with force and effectiveness, but we cannot accept a situation whereby the daily routine of the south’s residents is disrupted. We will have to strike in such a way that our neighbors (in Gaza) will not want to enter additional rounds of violence.” News flash to Gideon: our “neighbors” in Gaza disrupt life in the South every day by randomly trying to kill us.
Benny Gantz, the IDF Chief of Staff, had these words of bravado for IDF new recruits today: “We are still following the situation in the south and we need to see how it develops and whether the (rocket) firing really stops. It’s not over until it’s over. Quiet will be answered with quiet, and fire will be answered with fire.”
Gee thanks Benny for “still following the situation in the south.”
“Fire will be answered with fire”? Sure thing Benny. Just like on Monday–when over 50 more rockets were fired at the South, and the IAF struck Gaza once.
The simple fact is that the terrorists in Gaza stopped firing because Israel stopped firing. Islamic Jihad’s military wing spokesman Abu Ahmed crowed this today: “We accept a ceasefire if Israel agrees to implement it by ending its attacks and assassinations. The ball is in Israel’s court.”
By the way, since the ceasefire went into effect three Qassam rockets were fired into Israel overnight, and six mortars were fired at the citizens of southern Israel today at noon–four hours ago. And the IDF did nothing.
The situation is back to normal in the Israeli South.