UPDATES 7 pm Israel time, Tuesday, February 11 2014:
**The European Union continued the steady drumbeat of threats against Israel today with EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faarborg-Andersen declaring that “The failure of negotiations, particularly if it would be ascribed to continued settlement construction, would not make it possible for EU-Israel relations achieve their full potential and carries the risk of Israel becoming increasingly isolated.”
Now we have reached a point that it really makes no difference to the Europeans what actually causes the failure of negotiations; all it takes is the perception that “settlement” construction caused the failure, and Israel will be blamed and increasingly isolated.
Does this sound like anyone else’s threats of late? If you answered “John Kerry’s”, you win the israelstreet prize of the day.
**By the way, where have the Europeans and Faaborg-Andersen been in the last two days when the Palestinians have made one outrageous statement after another?
First we had chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat declaring on Sunday that “Palestine will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state”.
Then we had Palestinian/PLO Religious Affairs Minister Mahmoud al-Habbash ranting yesterday that Jerusalem “including the Western Wall” belongs to the Palestinians and must be returned.
Not one peep has been heard from anyone in the European Union.
Missiles continue exploding in southern Israel every day.
Last night’s event was particularly troubling as a “volley” of rockets hit the Sha’ar Hanegev area just after 11:00 pm. Once again, this was a case of “official” authorities reporting that “one rocket hit in an open space” while residents on the ground heard groups of explosions in two separate areas.
As we all know, Palestinian terrorists in Gaza have automatic rocket launchers which can shoot from six to eight rockets at a time. Presumably, it was one of these launchers that the IAF reported striking early this morning in response to last night’s missile fire.
Your humble servant would like for you, dear readers, to keep this incessant rocket fire in context. Looking at the “Palestinian Terrorist Rockets and Mortars Fired at Southern Israel since January 20, 2012” in the right hand column of this blog page, you will see that 2,933 have struck Israel in the last 752 days.
This is 3.9 per day.
Our wonderful PM Benjamin Netanyahu likes to crow how the last round of hostilities with Hamas in November 2012 stopped the fire coming out of Gaza. He and our wonderful Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon always like to bluster that southern Israel will never return to a situation in which southern Israelis have to run to their bomb shelters everyday.
But that is exactly what has happened.
Since the supposed cessation of hostilities with Hamas on November 21, 2012, two hundred and forty two rockets and mortars have pounded southern Israel. Nothing that Netanyahu and Ya’alon threaten, and nothing that the IDF does, stems the missile attacks.
Israeli children must attend school in bomb shelters, walk home from school under the threat of a missile attack, eat dinners with their family wondering when the next missile will strike, and then be grabbed from their beds and rushed to a bomb shelter when the missiles strike at night–just like last night in Sha’ar Hanegev and surrounding communities.
Such is the sad reality of life in southern Israel.