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Quick Takes: News From Israel You May Have Missed

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Furthering the speculation Israel may be planning large West Bank withdrawals, the IDF is now reportedly debating closing off the main Jewish highway in the West Bank to Jewish traffic, rerouting Highway 60 – the major commuter artery for the area’s roughly 200,000 Jews – to a series of roads that run dozens of miles away from West Bank Jewish communities.

The highway was constructed in the early 1990′s to ease traffic for Arab and Jewish commuters, and to make it safer for Jews to travel throughout the West Bank by bypassing major Arab cities from which snipers had fired on Jewish vehicles.

Moshe Jacobs, a West Bank doctor who commutes during the week to his office in Jerusalem, said, “Now I am going to have to drive over 15 miles out of the way closer to major Arab cities to get to work. There is no reason in the world for this road to close. The only thing it will accomplish is make our lives uncomfortable and more dangerous.”

Sara Frankel, a resident of the West Bank town of Eli, said, “Before Israel evacuated Gaza, [the government] took steps just like this to make life harder and conditions unsafe for the Gaza Jews by closing roads and taking away protection. If they close the highway it would be a clear step in the direction of a future forced evacuation.”

Indeed, just prior to the Gaza withdrawal, the Israeli army rerouted Jewish traffic, closed several roads and began removing army outposts from Jewish communities. Several years before the withdrawal, residents of an entire Gaza Jewish community, Nitzarim, were banned from driving their vehicles on the only access road that led to their town; they were restricted to taking hourly shuttles into their community.

* * * *

During an exclusive WorldNetDaily interview, Abu Oudai, leader of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades responsible for coordinating the terror group’s West Bank rocket network, warned his organization is planning to fire rockets in the “very near future” at the area’s Jewish communities and ultimately at Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. So far, the vast majority of rockets have been fired from the Gaza Strip, far from most of Israel’s major cities.

“There will be no calm, no cease-fire until the occupation leaves our land. I don’t need to tell you that the aerial distance from Jenin to Netanya, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and other cities is not big without telling you what are all our plans concerning other parts of the West Bank,” said Oudai.

The terror leader said Israel’s security fence is “useless” against his group’s rockets.

“An important goal of the [West Bank] rockets is to tell the Israelis that you have built a huge wall on which you spent billions of dollars but still we are hitting you with our rockets and reaching every target we want. This wall will not defend you from our rockets which have defeated your wall and all the security measures you have taken to prevent our attacks.”

Israeli military officials have threatened an unprecedented military response to any rocket launchings from the West Bank. But Oudai, whose group has already launched up to six rockets from the area without incurring any major IDF retaliation, claimed the Israeli army doesn’t have the ability to curb Al Aqsa’s rocket threat.

“So far Israel has used all its tools, tanks, aircraft, assassinations, everything it can use and we are still here and still fighting. What can be this unprecedented reaction? They have already tried everything.”

Responding to military reports Al Aqsa’s West Bank rockets are less advanced than its weapons in Gaza, Oudai said, “The very near future will prove their capacity to kill and destroy and to beat the Israelis in the West Bank exactly like we did with these rockets in the Gaza Strip.”

Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief for WorldNetDaily.com. He is a co-host of ABC Radio’s nationally syndicated John Batchelor Show and can be heard regularly on American radio.

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About the Author: Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief and senior reporter for WorldNetDaily.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York's 770-WABC Radio, the largest talk radio station in the U.S., every Sunday between 2-4 p.m (CHANGE TO 7-9 p.m.). His website is KleinOnline.com


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