For the first time since Operation Protective Edge, the IDF counter-terrorism offensive in Gaza in 2014, sirens sounded in Beersheva – the capital of the Negev – on Thursday afternoon, Many hoped the siren was a false alarm, but unfortunately, this was not the case – it was Hamas extending the range of its attacks in the latest round of warfare with the terrorist regime in Gaza.
B’chasdei Hashem, the rocket landed in an open area outside the city. It appears a second rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome defense city.
In a directly related matter, IDF Southern District Commander Major-General Herzl Levi, accompanied by Homefront Commander Major-General Tamar Yedai, on Thursday morning visited Sderot, which has been hit hard in the last 24 hours of rocket fire. The senior military commanders met with Mayor Alon Davidi and other city officials.
KAN TV News on Thursday afternoon interviewed the head of the Shar Negev Regional Council, which is always hit hard by rocket fire. Council head Alon Schuster did not hide his extreme left-wing views despite the heavy rocket fire that began Wednesday. He began by explaining “I always try to view things with optimism, with the cup being half full, and we did have three hours of sleep despite the rocket fire”.
Schuster then went on to explain that he empathizes with the innocent citizens in both Israel and Gaza, and he is confident that if the talks continue, an agreement will be reached, for he is certain that Hamas is genuinely interested in a ceasefire as is Israel. “We are not pacifists, but we don’t want war” explained Schuster.
YWN notes that Schuster, and the many left-wing residents of the Gaza border communities, were staunch supporters of the Disengagement Plan, backing the expulsion of Gaza’s Jewish communities, confident that following the removal of Jews from Gaza, they would finally live in peace and tranquility with their Gaza neighbors. They blamed the Gaza Jewish communities for the injuring and deaths of IDF soldiers, who had to protect them amid a hostile environment.
They were always of the opinion that attacks were the response to the “occupation”, the Jewish communities of Gaza, but today, unfortunately, they are learning those very communities absorbed the attacks, thereby permitting the Gaza border communities to live in relative tranquility, unlike the situation today.
Meanwhile, Sderot Mayor Alon Davidi called on members of the Political-Security Cabinet, which is set to convene on at 4:00PM in the Defense Ministry, to “do what needs to be done to bring an end to the rocket attacks once and for all and permit a resumption of normal life”.
Davidi held a press conference, during which he stated residents of the city can and will endure whatever is necessary to accommodate a major military operation that will bring peace and quiet to the region.
Channel 10 TV News correspondent Tzvi Yechezkel explains there is no doubt at this stage that Hamas wants another round of warfare with Israel. He explained that it is clear, for if not, Hamas would not have fired close to or over 200 rockets. Yechezkel elaborated, stating for one thing, Hamas continues using people as human shields, and despite the videos shown to the world media of the horrific situation and the deaths and injuries from Israeli shelling, the Hamas leadership does not care how many Gazans are killed.
He adds that if Hamas enters into an agreement with Israel now, a ceasefire, the world will applaud, and the matter will end. However, if Hamas pulls the IDF into another round of warfare, it will not take long for the international community to begin shouting to “stop the shelling”, and then, which he insists is Hamas’ objective, enormous sums in donor funds will be infused into Gaza from the international community to rehabilitate Gaza once again, funds that Hamas uses to continue building its infrastructure.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)