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Quick Takes: News From Israel You May Have Missed

Hamas is seeking the ability to attack Israel using small airplanes laden with explosives that would be flown, 9/11-style, into important targets such as Tel Aviv skyscrapers, according to Abu Abdullah, a leader of Hamas’s so-called military wing.

Abdullah is considered one of the most important operational members of Hamas’s Izzedine al-Kassam Martyrs Brigades, Hamas’s declared “resistance” department. He said his group would not immediately carry out plane attacks, but that Hamas is acquiring new weapons and is preparing for the possibility of resuming attacks should a long-term truce it claims to abide by fall apart.

“It is not a secret that our military wing is very creative and works hard to improve its tools,” Abdullah said in an interview. “The goal is to have these planes carry maximum quantities of explosives and that they will be able to hit the targets that are fixed for its operation at a high level of accuracy. All the Zionist [targets] in our dear Palestine are legitimate. I estimate that this tool will not be used against regular targets. We will choose precious targets and I do not want to speak about strategic or any other targets. … We know that the enemy is building new and high buildings in Tel Aviv.”

Abdullah also listed possible military targets, referring to “important military and civil buildings and compounds” and “settlements in 1948 occupied Palestine [Israel].”

The statements came after Palestinian security officials told WorldNetDaily they believe that Hamas recently smuggled three small planes into the Gaza Strip capable of carrying explosives. They said information indicates the aircraft were purchased from eastern European dealers and that Hamas members received flight training from professionals in the Sudan, Iran and Syria.

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Iran estimates Israel will strike Tehran’s nuclear facilities within a year, and has been planning retaliatory attacks against Israeli, American and British interests, according to senior Lebanese political sources. The sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Iran believes Israel has been practicing raids in Kurdish regions of Iraq, a report Israel denies. They said Tehran has held a series of meetings with leaders of Hizbullah about attacking the Jewish state in the event of any Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear sites.

The Lebanese political sources said that while Iran is expecting lone Israeli military action, Iranian intelligence estimates the Jewish state is coordinating a planned attack with the U.S.

“The Iranians currently are operating under the working assumption that Israel is going to strike in less than a year and that this strike is highly coordinated with America,” said a senior Lebanese politician.

Officially, Israel denies it is planning military action against Iran. Israeli leaders regularly call Iran a “world problem” and urge the international community to halt Iran’s nuclear ambitions through diplomacy and the threat of economic sanctions.

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The Hizbullah Katyusha rocket attacks that targeted Israel this week (see rticle, below) and prompted cross-border clashes and Israeli Air Force retaliation were carried out by “agents” working on behalf of Syria and Iran, according to Lebanon’s Druze leader, Walid Jumblatt.

“Agents working for the axis of Tehran and Damascus arranged the rocket volley [against Israel] to create instability in Lebanon and bring conflict to our borders,” said Jumblatt.

He accused Syria and Iran of attempting to draw Israel into military clashes with Lebanon to justify the continued arming of Hizbullah (which is prohibited by a UN resolution that obliges Lebanon to disarm the terror group).

“They are trying to prevent the Lebanese army from implementing authority in [areas controlled by Hizbullah.] Also Syria has an economic goal in that it wants to stop investments into Lebanon by making our country unstable,” said Jumblatt.

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Iran has equipped Hizbullah with missiles capable of striking all of Israel’s major population centers, doubling the terror group’s firing range, according to Israeli defense officials.

The officials said Iran recently provided Hizbullah with long-range rockets capable of hitting targets up to 125 miles away. This would put Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Be’er Sheva, the capital of the Israeli Negev, within range of Hizbullah’s outposts at Israel’s northern border with Lebanon.

The new missiles, reportedly produced inside Iran, are propelled by solid fuel, making them more mobile then their liquid fuel counterparts. At launch, they weigh about 3.5 tons. The missiles lack a guidance system, but military officials said they can cause considerable damage.

Israeli defense officials see the rocket transfer as an Iranian attempt to boost its strategic options against the Jewish state, particularly in light of Tehran’s growing nuclear ambitions and fears the international community will try to halt its nuclear program. They said the rockets are meant to be aimed by Hizbullah at non-specific areas, including possibly major Israeli population centers.
 
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.

About the Author: Aaron Klein is a New York Times bestselling author and senior reporter for WND.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York's 970 AM Radio on Sundays from 7 to 9 p.m. Eastern. His website is KleinOnline.com.


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