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Updates (Israel time; most recent at top)
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3:45PM: Ok, that’s it from me for now.
Elder of Ziyon, Brian of London and NeoZionoid – who are not in Israel – may continue with the updates tonight/this morning (while it is not the Sabbath where they are) if anything major arises (and if they have the time).
Please keep the brave soldiers and citizens of Israel in your prayers. And if you have appreciated my blogging and would like to contribute, please donate here:
Aussie Dave, signing out.
3:35PM: Richard Landes notices the BBC is being silent about being terrorized in Gaza.
3:23PM: 2 more Israeli have suffered light wounds, and 15 more are in shock after a direct rocket hit in Ashdod.
3:10PM: 3 Israelis have been wounded and 2 suffering from shock after Grad rockets struck Kiryat Gat (30 mins drive from my house).
So far today, over 10 rockets have been fired into Israel.
2:27PM: Head Hamashole Khaled Mashaal has said Hamas will not accept Israel’s conditions for a ceasefire (Hebrew link).
2:23PM: The alarm in Be’er Sheva was due to a malfunction.
2:19PM: Code red alert in Be’er Sheva.
2:18PM: There have been at least 5 rockets fired into Israel in the past 20 minutes.
1:53PM: Now this is the definition of a target rich environment.
1:45PM: Perhaps inspired by the previous update, here is a video that shows that peace is possible.
1:42PM: With the war in Israel continuing, this was yesterday’s latest breaking news story on the BBC:
Oh the inhumanity!
1:30PM: Oh so frustrating CNN debate between a Jewish girl and a palestinian girl.
Notice how Palestinian Girl describes the palestinian hatred for Israel arising from the creation of Israel in 1948, and not the so-called “occupation” of 1967 upon which current peace initiatives are predicated. She also says that there was a country of palestine before 1948 (not true), in which relations between Jews and palestinians were good (also not true..1929 Hebron massacre anyone?), and talks of Israel occupying Gaza for the past 3 years.
Alas, Jewish Girl does not pick up on any of this (perhaps she does not even know) and even refers to Hamas as an “extremist militant group.” Sigh.
12:43PM: The al-Sharq al-Awset daily has reported that Hamas is prepared to accept a conditional cease-fire with Israel starting tomorrow. Well d-uh. They’re getting their behinds whipped so of course they want it.
The question is, are we going to agree to it or try and delay things so we can land some more blows against them?
11:13AM: As expected, Hamas have used the “humanitarian pause” to fire off more rockets, with at least 3 landing in the Negev. Some rockets struck a building in Eshkol minutes after workers left.
9:48AM: A Qassam just landed near Eshkol, with no injuries or damage reported.
9:45AM: Ynet reported last night that Israel and Hamas had agreed on a two-week truce (based on palestinian sources), but I am not seeing this reported anywhere else.
9:35AM: Now this is what I call an education. Received from Holly Wilson via my contact form:
Your website was the main “curriculum” for the international relations class I teach on Tuesdays. I had your site up on a large monitor and we scrolled through it, discussing details of the Gaza War as we went. My high school
students were enthralled!
9:17AM: According to palestinian sources, the IDF has destroyed the “Iranian Unit” of Hamas, approximately 100 terrorists who had traveled to Iran and Hezbollah camps, mostly in the Beka’a Valley, where they were trained by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard in skills such as infantry fighting tactics, the use of anti-tank missiles, and the detonation of explosives.
And while the world press was reporting on the smuggling tunnels being used for food, goats and viagra (those last two items being connected), these terrorists were using them to return to the Gaza Strip.
9:05AM: This morning, IDF soldiers killed 3 palestinian terrorists who tried to perpetrate an attack against our forces (Hebrew link).
8:57AM: The IDF has announced we will once again halt our activities between 10:00AM and 2:00PM today, despite the fact we know Hamas and friends exploit it to fire off more rockets with impunity.
7:22AM: Israellycool exclusive: The Foreign Press Association has boycotted the IDF spokesman’s unit, sending the following letter to its members and the IDF spokesman’s unit:
From: The Foreign Press Association [[email protected]]
Sent: Thursday, January 15, 2009 2:27 PM
Subject: Urgent notice to members
The FPA rejects and condemns the IDF policy of controlling the news coverage of the events in Gaza. by preventing the entry of foreign journalists into Gaza and bombing buildings housing offices of international media – contrary to IDF assurances that these media buildings would be safe – the IDF is severely violating basic principles of respect for press freedom.
As a result of these unconscionable breaches, the FPA calls on all its members not to broadcast or print stills and videos the IDF provides as a substitute to independent reporting – until such time the IDF issues a formal apology for the attacks on the media buildings and offers assurances that no such event will occur in the future.
The Foreign Press Association
6:12AM: According to a government source, Egypt is willing to crack down on arms smuggling to Gaza, a key Israeli demand in accepting the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire proposal. However, we still have some reservations: we are insisting that the border crossings not be reopened until the smuggling issue is resolved, and we want Hamas to agree to an explicit timetable for concluding a deal on kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit and to be more flexible in what it is demanding in exchange for him.
6:00AM: Summary of yesterday’s events:
In a joint IDF and ISA operation in Gaza City early Thursday evening, the IAF targeted a building in which the following senior Hamas operatives were residing – Said Siam, Ia’ad Siam and Salah Abu-Sharah. The forces reported a direct hit.
Said Siam, born in 1959, served as minister of interior affairs in the Hamas government and oversaw its armed forces – including the Hamas Executive Force, its police force and its naval force. Siam was a zealous extremist, who liaised directly with Hamas’ military wing and the terror organization’s senior leadership in Gaza and abroad. Ia’ad Siam is the brother and right-hand-man of Said Siam. Salah Abu-Sharah is the head of Hamas’ interior security apparatus.
Approximately thirty five armed gunmen were hurt in the fighting today. Ground forces directed aerial and artillery forces that attacked different targets. In one of the incidents, forces came under RPG fire, returned fire and identified hitting the armed gunmen.
Since the early morning hours the IAF has attacked over 40 targets, including nearly a dozen armed cells, 21 rocket launching points, 2 mortar launching points and 2 weaponry storage sites.
More than 25 rockets were launched into Israel today.