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Liveblogging the War: Monday July 17th

Katushas have continued to rain down on northern Israel, landing north of Nahariya, in the western Galilee communities, and in the Akko area. There have been reports of 4 people being lightly injured. One rocket directly hit a house, ;wounding the father of a family, while his wife and children were not hurt.


Southern Israel has not been immune to attack either. At least 20 Kassams landed in Sderot and south of Ashkelon, lightly wounding two people.


IDF operations in the south and north continued overnight and this morning. The IAF have struck more targets in Lebanon, including the port of Beirut, a fishing port, and the Lebanese army’s radar system in bases in the northern city of Tripoli and in the town of Abada. The IDF have targeted the radar systems since they had been used by Hizbullah to hit a ship on Friday. According to Ha’aretz, the IDF have “all but accused the Lebanese military of lending its support to Hizbullah.”


Meanwhile on the southern front, the IAF have bombed the Palestinian Foreign Ministry building in Gaza city, as well as the north Gaza offices of a Hamas-led security force. An IDF soldier was lightly wounded by terrorists in the Gaza Strip, and 6 other soldiers were wounded in Nablus overnight, after a bomb was thrown at their patrol. And in a further demonstration of the IDF’s efforts to minimize civilian casualties during this war:

An Associated Press reporter in Gaza City heard an Israeli broadcast on a radio frequency usually used by a Hamas station calling on residents to stay out of the way of the fighting. “We are not gong to stop in Gaza until the terrorists hand over the soldier Gilad Shalit,” said the broadcaster, apparently an IDF soldier, in broken Arabic.

Updates (Israel time; most recent at top)

Tuesday updates here.

11:32PM: 11 people have been wounded from a Katusha barrage on Safed.

11:23PM: And more rockets hit northern Israel, including a medical center in the Galilee, and open areas near Haifa.

I cannot imagine what my fellow Israelis up north are going through. Although we are living in the same country, the loudest noise I am hearing here is the noise of the IAF planes flying overhead about once every hour.

10:42PM: The sirens are being heard in Haifa.

10:38PM: And the rockets keep raining down in the north.

10:28PM: Remember the claim that an IAF plane was shot down? The initial theory (see 2:08PM update) was that it was a pamphlet container. Now it seems as though it was a Hizbullah missile that misfired.

IDF sources estimate Monday that the ‚Äúdowned Israel Air Force jet seen falling from Beirut‚Äôs skies” was actually a Zelzal-type long-range missile, which is capable of reaching central Israel.

According to army sources, the Air Force struck a missile launching device, and as a result one rocket was accidentally fired but landed nearby.

I’m just glad it wasn’t a plane, and a long-range missile was wasted.

9:50PM: The IDF has said that its operations in Lebanon will continue at least a week.

8:58PM: Hizbullah claim that only 4 of their operatives have been killed since the onset of fighting 5 days ago.

8:35PM: The IAF have destroyed at least one long-range Iranian missile capable of hitting Tel Aviv.

8:26PM: Thousands are demonstrating in support of Israel in front of the UN headquarters in New York.

8:12PM: Mustafa just called – this is result of the interview. And if you don’t speak Arabic, you can get an idea of the content by using the Google language tool.

8:07PM: Does anyone read Arabic?




I am assuming this is the result of the interview I had with Mustafa, from the BBC Arabic site.


7:57PM: The IAF has struck 5 sites from which Hizbullah launched Katusha rockets.


6:30PM: The IDF soldier who was killed today was Osher Damari, 21.

Osher was born and raised in the coastal city of Netanya. The family has a business called “Flowers of Happiness,” named after their first born son Osher (Osher means Happiness in Hebrew). Lately the family moved the Emek Hefer. “He loved the beach and the house we bought near the beach.” said his father.


Jerar Damari said Osher wanted to serve in combat unit in the IDF. Following pre-service examinations Osher was chosen to serve in Haruv commando unit.


“He loved the army and wanted to be combat soldier, nothing less. There was a time when he was transferred to another unit and could have stayed there and go home every day, but he contested the transfer and fought hard get back to his unit.”

6:08PM: According to Lebanese bloggeer Doha, an IAF plane did go down.

It’s confirmed, an IDF plane has fallen in Kfarshima, east of Beirut, and both of its pilots have died. The IDF is denying these reports.

I would like to know what his source is.


6:05PM: Sandmonkey on why there will never be peace in the Middle East:

I think that the Israeli want peace with us because they don’t want their lives disrupted. They don’t want to have the IDF soldiers fighting in Gaza, rockets coming into their towns from Hamas or having to go to wars against Hezbollah to get their soldiers back. I think they want peace because they want their peace of mind. They view us as if we were a headache. We view them as if they are a cancer.

5:50PM: I can’t resist this Separated at Birth…a Bangladeshi Muslim at a protest denouncing Israel’s strikes on Lebanon, and a garden gnome



5:35PM: Regarding the 5:03PM update, the IDF have stated that they are not familar with the name. Which sounds like the terrorists are again using psychological warfare.


5:25PM: Israel has closed Haifa port as a result of the latest rocket attacks.


5:03PM: Al-Aqsa Martyr’s Brigades (Mahmoud Abbas’ boys) have issued a statement claiming they have kidnapped a soldier (and have named him). The IDF is currently investigating the claim.


5:00PM: A few hours ago, a Katusha directly hit a building in Haifa, causing it to collapse, and wounding 6 people.


2:58PM: The IDF have stated on Israeli television that the object seen shot down was a pamphlet container.


2:55PM: Regarding the reported downing of an IAF plane, PJM post that “Video on CNN International from LBC TV channel shows some piece of debris falling down in flames; the fast speed would probably indicate that it‚Äôs a relatively small piece, not a whole aircraft.”


2:50PM: Al Jazeera report that an IAF plane has been downed over Lebanon. The IDF has denied the report.


2:45PM: Katushas have hit Haifa, Tiberias and Safed. Israeli television reports that there were injuries in Haifa.


1:33PM:: Further to my 11:53AM update on the death of the IDF soldier:

Immediatley after the explosion, dozens of residents gathered around the soldier’s body and burst into shouts of happiness in front of the Arab media’s television cameras.

And this:

Parts of the soldier’s body were seized by Palestinians, but Palestinian security forces returned them to the IDF shortly after.

An armed Palestinian holds a boot belonging, according to Palestinians, to an Israeli soldier killed earlier in the Old City of Nablus Monday July 17, 2006.

12:35PM: This footage may give a small idea what it is like before a Katusha hits.


12:15PM: Police have foiled a major terror attack in Jerusalem, finding an explosive device in the bag of a 25-year-old palestinian at Tzahal Square.


12:07PM: British Prime Minister Tony Blair and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan have called for the deployment of an international force in southern Lebanon. Like that is going to help.


Meanwhile, the French are sending Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin to Beirut on Monday to express support for Lebanon. Funny, but I don’t recall the French sending anyone to Haifa, Nahariya, and all the other communities being deliberately targeted by Hizbullah. And they wonder why we hate them.


11:53AM: Terrorists in Nablus have hurled an explosive device at IDF soldiers, killing 1 soldier and wounding 6 others, including the son of the Central Command chief.


11:50AM: From the Ha’aretz news ticker:  Israel offers assistance in evacuation of foreign nationals from Lebanon (Sky News)

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
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