In Gaza Islamic terrorists fired another rocket at Israel. There were no injuries. Hamas is having a harder time controlling the more radical Islamic terrorist groups in Gaza that refuse to comply with the ceasefire deal Hamas has with Israel. While Hamas and these smaller radical groups agree that their ultimate goal is the destruction of Israel, the more radical groups want to keep attacking Israel no matter what. Since Hamas is responsible for running Gaza and providing for many Palestinians who have more mundane goals than the destruction of Israel, Hamas has been forced to deal more harshly with the Islamic radicals who continue firing rockets at Israel. This has led to the arrest of over twenty Islamic radicals and a growing number of anti-Hamas demonstrations by family and friends of those arrested. That has not stopped the rocket firings and Hamas is being pressured to conduct more raids and arrest more of the usual suspects.
Since the ceasefire deal with Hamas last November 18th, rockets have been fired at Israel from Gaza. Israel has made it clear to Hamas that if the attacks do not stop Israel will invade and remove Hamas from power, something many Israeli hard-liners have been demanding for years. This has gotten the attention of Hamas, which has become increasingly aggressive in going after those who continue to fire rockets at Israel. But all Israel is interested in here is success. As far as the rocket fire goes, Israel has told Hamas “you stop it or we will.” For years Hamas believed Israel would never go that far as Hamas had made it clear they would fight to the death to hold onto Gaza. Now Hamas is not so sure that threat is enough to keep the Israelis out. Many Israelis see the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza as a big mistake. It was meant as a peace offering to the Palestinians but, like all other such gestures, it backfired.
Syrian rebels say Israeli war planes have been bombing chemical weapons storage sites that appear in danger of falling into the hands of rebels belonging to Islamic radical groups. Israel has been accused of carrying out similar air strikes since last January. Israel refuses to comment but has openly accused Syria of using chemical shells and bombs against its own people. The U.S. disagreed with this finding until recently. Now several NATO countries and many UN officials agree with Israel that chemical weapons have been used in Syria. The U.S. said it would get more involved in the Syrian fighting if chemical weapons were used there. Israel is waiting to see how the Americans will handle that pledge.
April 28, 2013: In Gaza Islamic terrorists fired another rocket at Israel. In response Israeli warplanes bombed buildings used by Islamic radicals three times.
April 25, 2013: An Israeli warplane shot down (with a missile) a UAV, apparently belonging to Hezbollah and coming down the coast from Lebanon. The UN had eventually condemned Hezbollah for sending a UAV into Israel last October 6th. Hezbollah complained that the UN was picking on them and being unfair. On October 11th Hezbollah admitted that it had launched the Iranian UAV that flew out into the Mediterranean and then entered southern Israel on October 6th. The UAV was spotted immediately and, after being photographed by aircraft, shot down over an unpopulated area. Iran claimed that this revealed vulnerabilities in Israeli air defenses. It didn’t, but Iran and Hezbollah hailed the UAV operation as a great victory. In practical terms, it wasn’t. But neither Hezbollah nor Iran pay much attention to practicality. Meanwhile, Hezbollah has otherwise maintained the truce (after the 2006 war) in southern Lebanon and along the Israeli border. There have been few rocket firings (and all apparently by non-Hezbollah groups) and raids across the border. This was another reason for the UAV operation, to remind everyone that Hezbollah and Israel were still at war. But because Israel can still do a lot of damage to Hezbollah, the Islamic terrorist group prefers a ceasefire. This is especially true now with more and more Hezbollah showing up in Syria to help keep their friends the Assads in power.
April 20, 2013: In Gaza Islamic terrorists fired another rocket at Israel. In response Israeli warplanes bombed buildings used by Islamic radicals.
April 19, 2013: Israel briefly grounded its 30 or so AH-1 helicopter gunships last month, after one of them suffered a rotor failure. The grounding has been lifted, as it was discovered that the rotor failure was a unique event and not part of a flaw found in all the AH-1s. The AH-1s are eventually being replaced by AH-64 gunships, which Israel already has 44 of.