Rockets continue to fall on Israeli civilian targets throughout the south, fired by Hamas terrorists from Gaza. During yesterday alone, thirty rockets and mortar shells landed throughout southern Israel, threatening the lives of over a million Israeli residents.
The IAF attacked 14 terror targets in the Gaza Strip over night, including hidden rocket launchers and centers of terror.
Hamas reports that seven of their men were killed in the strikes. Six members of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades were killed in a tunnel in Rafah in southern Gaza. A seventh terrorist was killed elsewhere. Security sources have indicated that the killed terrorists were not directly killed by IAF fire, but rather from its affects which may have caused the collapse of the terror tunnel .Hamas have vowed to avenge their deaths.
In the north, several mortars were fired from Syria into Israel. The IDF responded by firing at the suspected sources. No injuries or damage was reported on the Israeli side. The intense rocket fire has been continuing relentlessly for the past weeks; some summer camps were not opened today and summer events were canceled. The residents in the south are showing signs of elevated stress, and are demanding that the government respond more forcefully to the Gazan aggression. Furthermore, the Home Front Command has refused to raise the alert level, still categorizing the situation as ‘routine’.
This has legal as well as organizational implications. That too has awakened the residents’ ire.
Haim Yalin, Head of the Eshkol Regional Council, stated:
“The rockets continue to explode over the homes around Gaza, but the status is still categorized as ‘routine’. The Security Cabinet refuses to make clear decisions and leaves the residents in an unclear state. Is this situation ‘routine’, when 20 rockets explode every day? In the last days we are witness to a significant increase in the calls to the stress hotline, more than we have experienced during Operations ‘Cast Lead’ and ‘Pillar of Defense’. We are experiencing a vast gap between the state’s definitions and the reality in which rockets cause damage and fear every day. The ongoing uncertainty gnaws away at our sense of strength, security and faith in the state’s institutions. With no leadership, we must take action on our own.”
He announced that his council has elevated the alert level, categorizing it as ‘ a special status on the home front’.
About the Author: Aryeh Savir is director of the International division of Tazpit News Agency.
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