On the sixth day of Operation Protective Edge, Israel remains determined to neutralize the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza.
For Israelis, this past weekend included incoming rocket sirens in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. As Hamas falsely claims mini-victories, the IDF is on the offensive. Leaflets have been dropped around Gaza by the Israelis, reminding civilians to evacuate the neighborhoods where the rockets will be aimed.
IDF: Our Mission is to Stop Terrorism
The IDF has reported that it will do what it takes to protect its citizens and tourists visiting Israel from abroad from Hamas aggression. Comparisons have been drawn to the type of offensive which the IDF launched against Hezbollah in the Second Lebanon War back in 2006, when the IDF demolished the guerilla base. The entire terrorist infrastructure in Gaza will be neutralized, the IDF said.
The IDF’s social media team reported: “Our Mission is to stop Hamas Terrorism.”
Meanwhile, the Jerusalem Municipality is taking steps to inform Palestinians in east Jerusalem about what to do when sirens goes off. Civilians are being encouraged to remain in a sheltered setting for at least 10 minutes after a siren is sounded, preferably on a bottom floor. Of the more than 809 rockets fired into Israel over the past six days, 145 have been intercepted by the Iron Dome; the rest have landed all across the country, and lacking navigation technology, have also endangered Israel’s 1.5 million Arab citizens.
Prisoner Exchanged in Shalit Deal Operating Hamas Center
The IDF is targeting the homes of Hamas officials, including the residence of Yahya Sanuar, which security sources report is serving as a command and control center. Sanuar, a founder of Hamas and senior member, was released from an Israeli prison back in 2011, as part of the deal to retrieve Israeli POW Gilad Schalit.
As Hamas instructs Gazans not to evacuate their homes, the IDF continues its war against Hamas, advising civilians to relocate. As of Sunday morning, over 1,320 terror targets had been hit.
Hamas Falsely Boasts Success
In the course of the fighting, Hamas claimed: “We killed an IDF soldier while infiltrating a base.” In reality, no IDF casualties have yet to be reported other than a handful of soldiers lightly injured by shrapnel and one more seriously, although he is recuperating and reportedly eager to return to the battlefield.
On Friday, Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas announced that he seeks a diplomatic solution but is lacking a partner for dialogue. Haaretz reported Abbas, as saying: “The victims that died now died for nothing. Families lost their loved ones for no just reason.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vocalized his discontent with Abbas’ decision to unite with Hamas earlier this year. After evacuating the Gaza Strip back in August 2005, the IDF watched Hamas win political power and expel Fatah from the Gaza Strip. The Hamas-Fatah conflict lasted almost a decade, with each side illegally detaining hundreds of each other’s members as political prisoners. This past April, a reconciliation deal was signed, which was immediately met with pessimism by Israeli security analysts.
Days after the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation agreement in April, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared: “I think the pact with Hamas kills peace. If it moves forward, it means peace moves backward.” This past week seems to prove his assessment correct.
Author: Elisha Kramer, United with Israel