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December 19, 2014 / 27 Kislev, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘Erez’

IDF Confirms Hamas Mega-Attack Plan

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

The IDF confirmed this week that Gaza’s ruling Hamas terror organization planned a massive terror attack on Israel via its tunnel network this September.

IDF Spokesperson Peter Lerner said the terror group planned to infiltrate into multiple Jewish communities through tunnels under Israel’s southern border.

Terrorists would have then murdered and abducted as many victims as possible, “inflicting mass casualties,” he said in an interview published Tuesday in Vanity Fair.

“Hamas had a plan. . . A simultaneous, coordinated, surprise attack within Israel. They planned to send 200 terrorists armed to the teeth toward civilian populations. This was going to be a coordinated attack. The concept of operations involved 14 offensive tunnels into Israel. With at least 10 men in each tunnel, they would infiltrate and inflict mass casualties,” Lerner told the publication.

This is not the first report of such a plan. During the latter weeks of Operation Protective Edge, Hebrew-language Israeli media also quoted unnamed military officials who told of the “grand plan” by Hamas, which was alleged at that time to be set for Rosh HaShanah.

Hamas used its terror tunnel network with great success in June 2006 to murder IDF soldiers and kidnap then-IDF soldier Gilad Shalit, who remained in captivity until 2011.

Israel traded more than a thousand Palestinian Authority Arab terrorists – including hundreds of bloodthirsty murderers serving long sentences – in order to rescue Shalit from Gaza.

Destroying the Hamas terror tunnel network was one of two main objectives of Operation Protective Edge this past summer; the other was to silence the incessant rocket and missile fire aimed at Israeli civilians by Gaza terrorists.

According to the IDF, 38 tunnels were destroyed during the operation before Israel was forced to end the operation due to pressure from the international community, and the United States. Many of the tunnels that were destroyed led directly into Israel from Gaza, and were to be used as conduits for terror attacks in Israel.

Hamas political bureau chief Khaled Meshaal referred to them as “defensive” tunnels, according to the report in Vanity Fair.

“The tunnels may have been outwardly called ‘offensive tunnels’ but in actual fact they are ‘defensive’ ones,” Meshaal was quoted as saying.

Two Hamas terror cells emerged from those tunnels, near Kibbutz Nir Am and Kibbutz Erez, on July 21 – during the 50-day war with Hamas.

A bloody battle ensued between IDF soldiers and the heavily armed terrorists, preventing what might otherwise have been wholesale slaughter in a defenseless civilian Israeli village or town.

Three Injured in Mortar Fire During Humanitarian Operation at Erez Crossing

Sunday, August 24th, 2014

Three Israeli Arabs were injured this afternoon at the Erez Crossing checkpoint by a mortar shell fired from Gaza. As a result of the incident, which occurred during the transfer of Gazan patients for medical treatment in Israel, authorities have announced the closing the Erez Crossing checkpoint between Israel and the territory, citing heightened risk to life.

Shortly thereafter the IAF destroyed the launchers used in the attack.

The three injured were taxi drivers who were preparing to take a group of Gazans from the crossing to Israeli hospitals. Two of the wounded are still in serious condition. At least one of the patients was headed to Hadassah-Ein Karem hospital in Jerusalem, according to one of the injured drivers, who works for the hospital and is related to the victim.

The other two drivers were identified as residents of the Bedouin town of Rahat.

Meir Yitzhak was one of the Magen David Adom paramedics dispatched to the scene following the attack. Recounting the incident, Yitzhak told Tazpit News Agency that he was at home in Kibbutz Yad Mordecahai when he received the call.

“We rushed over to the area with an ambulance and identified three wounded, including two in serious condition with shrapnel wounds in the abdomen and another wounded in moderate condition with shrapnel wounds in the upper limbs,” he said.

“We evacuated the wounded to secure area close by. In the background, we continued to hear whistling and mortar hits,” Yitzhak added. Following initial treatment, the wounded were evacuated to Barzilai Hospital.

In response to the attack, the Israeli officials decided to close down the crossing for any use other than life-saving operations. The incident occurred several days after an announcement by Israeli authorities that a group of 17 injured Gazans would be taken by Israel to be flown to hospitals in Turkey. On August 19 an initial group of 19 were flown to Turkey, along with their relatives, at Israel’s expense.

The Lone Survivor of the Golani 13

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

IDF soldier Shiloh Hadad is the lone survivor of the Golani 13, a combat team of fierce Israeli warriors who battled with Hamas terrorists just after midnight on Sunday.

This is his story, as told to his parents, who were rewarded with a 15-minute visit and a hug to reassure them their son was still alive after hearing the news that his comrades had died in battle.

Hadad was the eighth man in the APC (armored personnel carrier) that fought a fierce firefight with Hamas terrorists in the Shejaiya neighborhood of Gaza City.

His APC was set ablaze after an explosive device was detonated beneath it. Seven soldiers were killed.

Reportedly, it was an older APC and the vehicle was not equipped with the type of armor that its built to withstand such a blast. Hadad somehow managed to escape the inferno. Within 15 minutes, an eighth comrade in a nearby unit paid the ultimate price in the heavy fighting around him.

A lull, and a few hours of quiet.

Four hours later the battle resumed. Two more Golani soldiers died as the force fought Hamas terrorists around the buildings and in the alleyways of Shejaiya. The fighting went on for hours; and just before 9:00 am, the terrorists trapped a Golani unit inside a burning building. Three more Israeli soldiers died.

After the battle, Shiloh’s parents learned their son was in the Golani unit that had fought the battle, its APC a flaming wreck.

But as soon as he could, Shiloh called his parents to let them know he was okay, telling them, “You do not understand what has just happened to me.” They immediately set out to find him. It took hours to track him down.

“They wouldn’t let him go once they had their arms around him,” his aunt, Batsheva, told Hebrew-language media. “They held him 10, 15 minutes. But then after telling them what he went through, and how he was feeling, he said, ‘I have to go back in to the front, back to my friends.’ And he was gone.”

His aunt added that it was not clear how Hadad had managed to remain alive. “After that, he managed to escape but it is not clear how, and they had no time to talk.” His lightning decision to leave the APC when he did is what saved his life — a miracle.

“The fog of war still hangs over the incident, but it is likely that after the operation is over we will find out more details through the investigation into the incident,” she said. “But one thing is certain: Shiloh is a Golani warrior. He went through a really serious battle, but he insisted on going right back to Gaza.”

Hadad’s father agreed with his son’s decision, as difficult as it must have been for him. “This campaign is intended to save Jewish blood,” his father said. “We all are waiting in safety for him to do his job and protect the homeland. That is the way we taught him, and it is the way our family believes. My brother is in the military, and we have in our family other officers and commanders as well.

“I hope with all my heart and soul that all our soldiers return safe and sound.”

Another Mega Terror Attack Thwarted in the South

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Ten Hamas terrorists infiltrated Israel early this morning via a terror tunnel, entering between the Erez checkpoint and the community of Nir Am. The group split into two contingents.

An IDF observation unit spotted the terrorists and forces were alerted. One contingent was attacked by the IAF and eliminated. The other was met by ground forces.

All ten terrorists were killed, but a number of IDF soldiers were wounded in the exchange due to an anti-tank rocket that was fired at Israeli forces during the fighting.

All residents in the area were ordered to stay in their homes and roads were shut down. There are unclear reports of Israeli casualties as well. The Hamas has made several infiltration attempts over the past days as they continue to try to achieve their goal of murdering Israeli civilians.

On Saturday morning, two IDF soldiers were killed when a squad numbering 8 or 9 terrorists emerged from a tunnel near Ein Hashlosha and engaged an IDF motorized force.

On Thursday, 13 terrorists emerged from a tunnel in the Eshkol region, but were spotted and escaped back into the tunnel. A bomb was dropped on the entrance into the tunnel immediately after they re-entered it, but is not clear if they were killed by the bomb.

Here is a video of a different terror tunnel found inside a Gaza home.

IDF Helps Palestinians Cross into Israel from Gaza

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

Major Tariq is a senior commander at the Erez Crossing where he helps thousands of Palestinians cross from Gaza into Israel every month.

Major Tariq, a senior commander in the Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), works in one of Israel’s most sensitive areas. Stationed at the Erez Crossing – just steps away from Gaza – he and his soldiers face the constant threat of attacks from Hamas terrorists. Since 2005, Hamas has launched 8,000 rockets from Gaza at populated areas in Israel’s southern region.

Despite the danger, Maj. Tariq works every day to help Palestinians cross into Israel from Gaza. As a result of his cooperation with the Palestinian Authority – which also works with a division of COGAT in Judea and Samaria  –  about 400 Gazans travel into Israel each day through the Erez crossing.

“The majority of requests are related to health problems,” Maj. Tariq said of civilians traveling through the crossing. Several times each day, Maj. Tariq and his staff direct the Palestinians to Israeli hospitals that can treat their conditions. IDF officials estimate that some 100 Palestinians seeking medical care travel into Israel each day.

Although Palestinians can receive medical treatment in Gaza, many turn to Israeli hospitals for more advanced care.  “It is important to note that there are 27 hospitals in Gaza. Gaza’s population has the ability to receive medical care on site,” Maj. Tariq explained, adding that Israeli hospitals can handle complex health problems that Gazan hospitals are incapable of treating.

Photo credit: IDF

Photo credit: IDF

“When a child is sick, injured and needs prompt treatment, we take all precautions and measures so that the child can pass through the crossing as quickly as possible,” Maj. Tariq said, explaining that all Gazans in urgent need of medical care receive the highest-priority treatment at the crossing. “IDF soldiers ensure that an ambulance arrives and brings the patients to a nearby Israeli hospital, where they receive necessary medical care,” Maj. Tariq added.

Many other Gazans cross into Israel to visit relatives living in Judea and Samaria. Each month, IDF officials help more than 3,000 Palestinians pass through the crossing to visit their families. This month, as Palestinian Muslims observe the holiday of Ramadan, higher numbers of travelers are visiting Israel to celebrate the holiday with family members.

Palestinians cross into Israel for Ramadan. Photo credit: IDF

Palestinians cross into Israel for Ramadan. Photo credit: IDF


Speaking Their Language

Maj. Tariq, who comes from a Druze community in Israel’s north, grew up speaking Arabic like many other members of his unit. His fluency allows for a direct line of communication between the IDF and Palestinian travelers. According to Maj. Tariq, he often speaks directly with Gaza residents to understand their needs on an individual level.

Maj. Tariq is responsible for facilitating all passages through the Erez Crossing. Photo credit: IDF

Maj. Tariq is responsible for facilitating all passages through the Erez Crossing. Photo credit: IDF

Native speakers of Arabic like Maj. Tariq are not the only soldiers who can speak with the travelers in their native language. The unit requires all of its members – from new recruits to commanders – to complete a course in Arabic. This policy ensures that all of the unit’s soldiers are prepared to communicate with Gazans directly to discuss their specific requests.
Visit IDF Blog.

Gaza Rockets Attacks and Related Retaliations

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

IAF attacked targets in Gaza, after rockets from Gaza hit Israel on Saturday night.

The IAF says they hit a weapons cache in southern Gaza.

In response to the Gazan terror attack, Israel also completely closed the Kerem Shalom crossing. The Erez crossing has also been closed to all transfers and traffic except for humanitarian purposes.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel/gaza-rockets-attacks-and-related-retaliations/2013/04/28/

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