The Hamas terrorist organization made clear Saturday night that its spirit was far from broken and its goal of annihilating the Jewish State remain unchanged.
“We will continue our resistance until our goals are achieved,” spokesman Fawzi Barhum told international media in a news briefing.
[Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin] “Netanyahu wants to falsely claim a victory of his government and his army,” Barhum observed in a response following the prime minister’s news conference after the Sabbath.
On Saturday morning, the Izz a-Din al-Qassam military wing of Hamas issued a separate statement claiming it had lost contact with the cell that abducted 23 year old IDF 2nd Lt. Hadar Goldin of Kfar Saba.
The Givati platoon commander was dragged into a tunnel during an ambush that took place at 9:30 am in the southern Gaza border town of Rafah, about 90 minutes after the start of a humanitarian cease fire forced on Israel by the United States and the United Nations. A suicide bomber detonated himself during the attack, which killed two other IDF soldiers.
Although the statement by the Izz a-Din al-Qassam Brigades added that Hamas had said it was ready for a humanitarian cease fire, and would not fire rockets at Israel, the facts on the ground – and in the air – have proved otherwise.
On Saturday alone, 84 rockets and missiles were fired at Israel, the most recent attack shortly after 10 pm Saturday night. Just a few minutes prior, another Qassam rocket exploded in an agricultural field in the Sdot Negev Regional Council district, setting a farm ablaze and damaging other property.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu reminded journalists at a news briefing Saturday night that one of the goals of Operation Protective Edge, now in its 26th day, was to restore peace to the south “for a long time.” Since rocket fire is continuing, military activity will do so as well.
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon added, “We are determined to continue striking Hamas and we will not compromise.”
“After the tunnels are destroyed, Israel will assess what else must be accomplished in accordance with our security needs, and only in accordance with our security needs.”