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ISRAELI ANSCHLUSS: Gilad Shalit an Excuse For Israeli State Terror, Collective Punishment

The ASSYMETRIC GILAD SHALIT WAR: The Hamas-led Palestinian government called for a prisoner swap with Israel, saying the offensive would not secure the soldier's release. Hamas-affiliated militants holding the hostage previously made that demand, but this was the first time the government did. So, with Israel KNOWING invasion would not yield a prisoner swap or remove the pretext for their invasion, it was carte blanche: Israel invaded because the 19 year old is just a pretext; they require him to be kept hostage to legitimate their infrastructure destructive invasion in Gaza. If the 19 year old dies, as Israel assuredly expects given 1994 similar context, that would make Israel happy: they would have "justification" in Israel to rip and rend using state terorrism and collective punishment much longer. Shalit is being used by war criminal Israel to turn devastated relations between Israel and the Hamas-led government into all-out (though heavily asymmetric) war. Hamas took over Palestinian Authority after winning parliamentary elections in January. Israel pulled out of its illegal occupation only last summer. That pullout was under the murdered/incapacitated PM of Israel, Sharon--and from what it looks like, Peres/Olmert certainly killed Sharon, and these assassins and murders who "eat their own" are in control of the out of control Israel.

Israel already attempted to expand the war into Syria buy overflying the Syrian Presidential Palace. Remember Syria was where Bush wanted to continue after attacking Iraq. Israel wants to start WWIII with Bush's aid. Bush smirks, fiddles, and complains about....Palestinians while Israel commits war crimes against Geneva Conventions. Nothing like this is justified.
"If the UK had replied to terrorist acts by the IRA by massacres of civilians in Belfast, the whole world would have shouted out in horror. When Moscow launches an operation to liquidate terrorist elements or to exterminate bandits in Chechnya, a hail of criticism falls on Moscow from those countries which protect the leaders of the "rebels" or "freedom fighters", the international terrorists whose main aim is to destabilise the State of the Russian Federation. When the Russian authorities acted in Beslan to free the children being held by these pigs, the European Union even asked for explanations. Yet when the State of Israel massacres Palestinians enjoying a picnic on the beach or when great destruction is caused to free a hostage, the world is quiet."


1.

NEWS: Asymmeric Gilad Shalit Pretext War? "for one 19 year old hostage," Israel terrorizes Gaza infrastucture, kidnap Hamas gov't, fly F16s over Syria's Presidential Palace'--"for 19 year old hostage"?; Israel wants WWIII, "for 19 year old hostage," Israel terrorizes Gaza infrastucture, bomb cities, bridges, fields, factories, kidnap Hamas gov't, fly F16s over Syria's Presidential Palace; bombs Interior Ministry, 20 other targets bombed already; Israel threatens to murder kidnapped Hamas PM; Israel has kidnapped 32 MPs; bombs Universities, water supply, etc.


summary:
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The militants who seized Shalit have demanded the release of hundreds of Palestinian women and children held in Israeli jails in exchange for information about him. The purported captors have demanded the release of Palestinian prisoners who are female or younger than 18 in exchange for information about Shalit. Shalit was captured when militants tunneled under a Gaza crossing and killed two other soldiers at a military post. Israel [finds it useful to] believe the group's Syria-based leaders ordered the operation. [so the Syrian Presidential palace is buzzed instead?]

The Hamas-led Palestinian government called for a prisoner swap with Israel, saying the offensive would not secure the soldier's release. Hamas-affiliated militants holding the hostage previously made that demand, but this was the first time the government did. [So, with Israel KNOWING invasion would not yield a prisoner swap or remove the pretext for their invasion, it was carte blance: they invaded because the 19 year old is just a pretext and they require him to be kept hostage to legitimate their infrastructure destructive invasion in Gaza. And if the 19 year old dies, as Israel assuredly expects--given 1994 similar context, that would make Israel even happier, and they would have "justification" in Israel to rip and rend much longer.] Shalit's abduction threatened to [i.e., is being used by Israel to...] turn devastated relations between Israel and the Hamas-led government into all-out war. Hamas took over the Palestinian Authority after winning parliamentary elections in January. [Israel pulled out of its illegal occupation only last summer, and that was under the murdered/incapacitated Sharon, from which it looks like Peres/Olmert did it.]

[history says:] The offensive was sparked by an audacious cross-border raid Sunday in which Palestinian militants captured Shalit and killed two other soldiers. Two of the Palestinian attackers were killed. The consortium of Hamas-linked groups claiming to hold Shalit warned Tuesday against any attempt to rescue him, saying it would result in failure and bloodshed. That was a chilling and probably deliberate reminder to Israelis that the last time Palestinian militants managed to seize an Israeli soldier, in 1994, he was subsequently killed in an Israeli rescue raid.

Israeli warplanes buzzed the seaside home of Syria's president and bombed targets in Gaza on Wednesday. Israeli military officials said on condition of anonymity that warplanes flew low over the home of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Israeli fighter jets also flew over Assad's summer home in an overnight raid near the Mediterranean city of Latakia in northwestern Syria, military officials said. Israeli TV said four planes were involved in the low-altitude flight, and Assad was there. Syria said its air defenses fired at the jets, forcing them to flee. In first response to Israeli flyover in Syrian skies, Damascus government source says: 'We opened fire and the planes left the area,' adds: 'Israel is making scandalous mistake that is crossing the bounds of logic'. "Two Israeli military planes circled with dawn at a low height, near our shore. The air defense forces opened fire at the planes and they split up and left the area." Syria denied any ties or responsibility to the kidnapping of soldier Gilad Shalit in Gaza. "These aggressive operations form a provocation and are unjustified...." [Israel claims four planes. Syrian story is two planes. Perhaps two planes over each Syrian target.]

Israeli army sent tanks and thousands of troops into Gaza.

[bomb the electricity] Fighter jets also knocked out electricity and water supplies for most of the 1.3 million residents of the Gaza Strip. Fighter jets fired at least nine missiles at Gaza's only power station, cutting electricity to 65 percent of the area, plant engineers said. The station's three functioning turbines and a gasoline reservoir were engulfed in flames. Wasfi Kabha, the Palestinian minister of prisoner affairs, said Israel was creating a "humanitarian crisis." Areas in northern Gaza that receive electricity from Israel still had power, and some southern areas were able to get power from neighboring Egypt. Generators relieved darkness in other places.

[bomb the water supply infrastructure]

[bomb the bridges] Three bridges were destroyed. "They hit the bridges, they hit the power station, so there will be a problem in water supply and health services," he told the British Broadcasting Corp. Knocking down the bridges cut Gaza in two, Palestinian security officials said. The Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt - Gaza's main link to the outside world - has been closed since Sunday. The air offensive in effect sliced Gaza into three sectors and knocked out power to large swaths, though electricity was restored at least temporarily in Gaza City and other northern areas. There was no immediate word on any Palestinian casualties or the number of Israeli troops that crossed into Gaza.

[bomb the (closed) airports] Witnesses reported heavy artillery shelling near the long-closed Gaza airport outside Rafah. Warplanes flew low over the strip, rocking it with sonic booms and shattering windows.

[bomb civilians] Wednesday evening, Israel military fired artillery [at civilians] near Gaza City - the first time Israel has targeted that area during the offensive. The army said [for public consumption the story was]...it was testing artillery units and not firing at specific targets. [Do you invade somewhere to "test" your artillery units? No.] Palestinians dug in behind walls and embankments as warplanes launched missiles in northern and southern Gaza. Residents of northern Gaza, preparing for what they feared could be a long military operation, stocked up on food, candles and batteries for radios as a minister warned of a "humanitarian crisis."

[bomb camps, and agricultural fields] Jets repeatedly fired missiles at open fields in Gaza, the military said. [Lucky hits I guess since for public consumption they say "not firing at specific targets"--hardly:] Two missiles hit empty Hamas training camps, witnesses said.

[bomb munitions factories] Separately, Israel attacked a rocket-making factory in the area.

[targeted killings] "Khaled Mashaal, as someone who is overseeing, actually commanding the terror acts, is definitely a target," [Israeli defense head] Ramon told Army Radio. The station interpreted his comments as meaning Mashaal was a target for assassination. Israel tried to poison Mashaal in Jordan in 1997. But Mossad agents were caught and King Hussein forced Israel to provide the antidote in exchange for their release.

[targeted government kidnappings] Israel seized eight Hamas cabinet ministers and dozens of officials on Thursday and prepared to step up its Gaza military offensive; now 32 MPs have been kidnapped by Israel

[targeted Israeli threats to murder the PM]

[staying for an occupation] Israeli tanks and soldiers began taking up positions east of Rafah overnight under cover of tank shells, witnesses and Palestinian security officials said. Capt. Jacob Dallal, a military spokesman, said troops moved a mile inside the coastal strip and were prepared for a long operation. "Everything is on the table," he said. [Even though he was already told that invasion would not yield the hostage, he says:] "We won't hesitate to carry out extreme action to bring Gilad back to his family," Olmert said. "All the military activity that started overnight will continue in the coming days. "We do not intend to reoccupy Gaza. ["Don't watch our actions, believe our words." [Only further destroy it on this useful pretext!] We [talk of] one objective, [ethnic cleansing of the Palistinians, though for public consumption we say we the purpose is] to bring Gilad home." Olmert repeated that Israel will not negotiate with militants. [Instead it conducts mass terrorist actions called 'reprisals'.]

Abbas deplored the Israeli invasion, calling it "collective punishment and a crime against humanity," and he urged the United States and other international negotiators to intervene, according to a statement. An aide said Abbas called Assad to ask him to persuade Mashaal to free the soldier. Assad promised to do so, the aide said on condition of anonymity because he was discussing private talks. Deputy Prime Minister Nasser Shaer of Hamas said his government, too, was trying to resolve the situation diplomatically.

[During this invasion,] The White House continued pressuring Hamas, saying it was the responsibility of the Palestinian government to "stop all acts of violence and terror." [?]

It was Israel's first ground offensive since pulling its soldiers and settlers out of Gaza last summer. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert [who assuredly was responsible for killing/incapacitating Sharon along with Peres] said Israel would not balk at "extreme action"....

Later, the Palestinian Information Ministry said it was "natural logic" to carry out a prisoner exchange. "Previous Israeli governments have done so ... and this is what other countries do in conflict situations," the statement said. High-ranking Hamas officials in exile also demanded a prisoner exchange. If Israelis do not negotiate a swap, Palestinians militants will conclude "that they should capture more soldiers," Hamas' representative in Lebanon, Osama Hamdan, told The Associated Press.

[escalation of kidnappings, more useful Israel pretexts for escalation in turn] Complicating matters was a new claim by the Popular Resistance Committees, one of the three groups that carried out Sunday's assault, that it also kidnapped Jewish settler Eliahu Asheri, 18, in the West Bank. Outside a Gaza City mosque, PRC militants displayed what they said was a copy of Asheri's ID card and reiterated threats to kill him if Israel did not end the invasion. [Israel would love that.] Separately, a statement obtained by the AP and signed by Abu Fouad, spokesman for the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades in Gaza, said the group was holding an unidentified 62-year-old Israeli from Rishon Lezion. The statement said the man was kidnapped Monday and that more evidence would be released later. Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said police had a missing persons report concerning a man named Noah Moskovitch. In a separate statement, Al Aqsa said it planned to attack an unspecified Israeli embassy soon.

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1.


Israelis Put Heat on Palestinians, Assad
By Ibrahim Barzak
The Associated Press

Wednesday 28 June 2006

Israeli warplanes buzzed the seaside home of Syria's president and bombed Hamas targets in Gaza on Wednesday to [they claim] pressure Palestinian militants to free a kidnapped Israeli soldier. [more like attempt to start a war

Fighter jets also knocked out electricity and water supplies for most of the 1.3 million residents of the Gaza Strip. Three bridges were destroyed to keep militants from moving Cpl. Gilad Shalit, 19, who was taken hostage Sunday by three Hamas-affiliated groups.

Israeli military officials said on condition of anonymity that warplanes flew low over the home of Syrian President Bashar Assad because [for public consumption they say] he has sheltered Hamas leaders blamed by Israel for masterminding the kidnapping.[though really buzzing over another state's presidential palace is hardly going to do anything except escalate a war, which they want.]

No casualties have been reported since the offensive began early Wednesday. The army sent tanks and thousands of troops into Gaza.

The Hamas-led Palestinian government called for a prisoner swap with Israel, saying the offensive would not secure the soldier's release. Hamas-affiliated militants holding the hostage previously made that demand, but this was the first time the government did.

Tensions escalated Wednesday evening as the military fired artillery near Gaza City - the first time Israel has targeted that area during the offensive. The army said it was testing artillery units and not firing at specific targets.

Palestinians dug in behind walls and embankments as warplanes launched missiles in northern and southern Gaza.

Residents of northern Gaza, preparing for what they feared could be a long military operation, stocked up on food, candles and batteries for radios as a minister warned of a "humanitarian crisis."

The White House continued pressuring Hamas, saying it was the responsibility of the Palestinian government to "stop all acts of violence and terror." But the United States also urged Israel to show restraint.

"In any actions the government of Israel may undertake, the United States urges that it ensures that innocent civilians are not harmed, and also that it avoid the unnecessary destruction of property and infrastructure," White House press secretary Tony Snow said.

It was Israel's first ground offensive since pulling its soldiers and settlers out of Gaza last summer. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Israel would not balk at "extreme action" to bring Shalit home but did not intend to reoccupy Gaza.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas deplored the incursion as a "crime against humanity," and a leading Hamas politician issued a call to arms against the Israeli troops.

Meanwhile, concerns about the fate of a missing West Bank settler grew after militants claiming to hold him displayed what they said was a copy of his identification card.

Also, a group affiliated with Abbas' Fatah party claimed to hold a third Israeli and threatened to attack an unspecified Israeli embassy within days.

Israeli tanks and soldiers began taking up positions east of Rafah overnight under cover of tank shells, witnesses and Palestinian security officials said. Capt. Jacob Dallal, a military spokesman, said troops moved a mile inside the coastal strip and were prepared for a long operation.

"Everything is on the table," he said.

Fighter jets fired at least nine missiles at Gaza's only power station, cutting electricity to 65 percent of the area, plant engineers said. The station's three functioning turbines and a gasoline reservoir were engulfed in flames.

Wasfi Kabha, the Palestinian minister of prisoner affairs, said Israel was creating a "humanitarian crisis."

"They hit the bridges, they hit the power station, so there will be a problem in water supply and health services," he told the British Broadcasting Corp.

Areas in northern Gaza that receive electricity from Israel still had power, and some southern areas were able to get power from neighboring Egypt. Generators relieved darkness in other places.

The Israeli military said three bridges were attacked "to impair the ability of the terrorists to transfer the kidnapped soldier." Knocking down the bridges cut Gaza in two, Palestinian security officials said.

Witnesses reported heavy artillery shelling near the long-closed Gaza airport outside Rafah. Warplanes flew low over the strip, rocking it with sonic booms and shattering windows.

Jets repeatedly fired missiles at open fields in Gaza, the military said. Two missiles hit empty Hamas training camps, witnesses said. Separately, Israel attacked a rocket-making factory in the area.

"We won't hesitate to carry out extreme action to bring Gilad back to his family," Olmert said. "All the military activity that started overnight will continue in the coming days.

"We do not intend to reoccupy Gaza. We have one objective, and that is to bring Gilad home."

The militants who seized Shalit have demanded the release of hundreds of Palestinian women and children held in Israeli jails in exchange for information about him.

Olmert repeated that Israel will not negotiate with militants.

Later, the Palestinian Information Ministry said it was "natural logic" to carry out a prisoner exchange.

"Previous Israeli governments have done so ... and this is what other countries do in conflict situations," the statement said.

High-ranking Hamas officials in exile also demanded a prisoner exchange. If Israelis do not negotiate a swap, Palestinians militants will conclude "that they should capture more soldiers," Hamas' representative in Lebanon, Osama Hamdan, told The Associated Press.

Shalit was captured when militants tunneled under a Gaza crossing and killed two other soldiers at a military post. Israel believes the group's Syria-based leaders ordered the operation.

Israeli Justice Minister Haim Ramon said Hamas' Syria-based political chief, Khaled Mashaal, was "not immune" from Israeli reprisal.

"Khaled Mashaal, as someone who is overseeing, actually commanding the terror acts, is definitely a target," Ramon told Army Radio. The station interpreted his comments as meaning Mashaal was a target for assassination.

Israel tried to poison Mashaal in Jordan in 1997. But Mossad agents were caught and King Hussein forced Israel to provide the antidote in exchange for their release.

Israeli fighter jets also flew over Assad's summer home in an overnight raid near the Mediterranean city of Latakia in northwestern Syria, military officials said. Israeli TV said four planes were involved in the low-altitude flight, and Assad was there.

The flight caused "noise" on the ground, the military officials said on condition of anonymity, according to military guidelines.

The officials said Assad was targeted because of the "direct link" between Syria and Hamas.

Syria said its air defenses fired at the jets, forcing them to flee.

Abbas deplored the Israeli invasion, calling it "collective punishment and a crime against humanity," and he urged the United States and other international negotiators to intervene, according to a statement.

An aide said Abbas called Assad to ask him to persuade Mashaal to free the soldier. Assad promised to do so, the aide said on condition of anonymity because he was discussing private talks.

Deputy Prime Minister Nasser Shaer of Hamas said his government, too, was trying to resolve the situation diplomatically.

The normally bustling streets of southern Gaza were eerily deserted, with people taking refuge inside their homes. The Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt - Gaza's main link to the outside world - has been closed since Sunday.

Dozens of people living near the airport left their homes, seeking sanctuary in nearby Rafah. A small grocery nearby was open, but there were no customers.

Shalit's abduction threatened to turn devastated relations between Israel and the Hamas-led government into all-out war. Hamas took over the Palestinian Authority after winning parliamentary elections in January and has been under international pressure to renounce violence and recognize Israel.

Complicating matters was a new claim by the Popular Resistance Committees, one of the three groups that carried out Sunday's assault, that it also kidnapped Jewish settler Eliahu Asheri, 18, in the West Bank.

Outside a Gaza City mosque, PRC militants displayed what they said was a copy of Asheri's ID card and reiterated threats to kill him if Israel did not end the invasion.

The group also warned that it had just begun its campaign to seize soldiers.

"The operation of kidnapping soldiers has started and is in a countdown," spokesman Mohammed Abdel Al said.

Separately, a statement obtained by the AP and signed by Abu Fouad, spokesman for the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades in Gaza, said the group was holding an unidentified 62-year-old Israeli from Rishon Lezion.

The statement said the man was kidnapped Monday and that more evidence would be released later.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said police had a missing persons report concerning a man named Noah Moskovitch.

In a separate statement, Al Aqsa said it planned to attack an unspecified Israeli embassy soon.

 http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/062806R.shtml



2.

Syria: Israel made big mistake



In first response to Israeli flyover in Syrian skies, Damascus government source says: 'We opened fire and the planes left the area,' adds: 'Israel is making scandalous mistake that is crossing the bounds of logic'
Roee Nahmias


In a first response by Syria to the Israeli Air Force flyover the palace of Syrian President Basher Assad, a government spokesman said: "Two Israeli military planes circled with dawn at a low height, near our shore. The air defense forces opened fire at the planes and they split up and left the area." This was Syria's official version of the event, which was broadcast on Syrian television.

While ground forces launch Gaza operation, Air Force conveys harsh message to Syrian president in aerial flight over his palace; Israel points finger at Syria as sponsor of Hamas leaders, headed by Khaled Mashaal, who Israel views as directly responsible for Kerem Shalom operation

In the message, Syria denied any ties or responsibility to the kidnapping of soldier Gilad Shalit in Gaza. "These aggressive operations form a provocation and are unjustified. If their goal is to place responsibility for the kidnapping of the Israeli soldier on the political leadership of Hamas (in Damascus - R.N.) - then Israel is making a scandalous mistake that is crossing the boundaries of logic," the source said.

The spokesman tried to evade Syria's responsibility and that of the Hamas leadership in Damascus for the recent kidnappings in Israel. "The operation was carried out by the Palestinian popular Resistance in Gaza and it announced this from there. This is not an operation that can be carried out from remote control," he said.


He described the Palestinian attack at Kerem Shalom as "an operation that shows the failure and internal crisis of Israel - a failure that it is trying to oust and therefore it is directing blame at others."



At the end of the Syrian news broadcast, a long interview with none other National Democratic Assembly Chairman Knesset Member Azmi Bishara ensued. Bishara spoke at length about recent incidents in Israel and the territories.



UN concern


Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan expressed concern over the recent incidents and the developing situation in the Palestinian Authority. Annan, who telephoned Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, said he spoke with Syrian President Basher Assad and with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and urged them to aid in the release of the kidnapped soldier. He asked Olmert for Israel to act with restraint in its operations against the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip.


The prime minister updated him on details of Operation Summer Rain and said that Israel is focusing its efforts on freeing kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit.


"The Palestinian Authority is not doing a thing to bring about the release of the soldier and to prevent Qassam rocket firing. Israel has lost its patience and must act to defend itself. With that it is taking [no] steps to avoid harming innocent Palestinian civilians," Olmert told the UN secretary-general.


In the course of the evening the prime minister also telephoned Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, and updated him on recent events in the south of the country and on operations Israel is taking in the Gaza Strip. He thanked the Egyptian president for the efforts of Egypt to try and release the kidnapped soldier and lowering tensions between Israel and the Palestinians.

 http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0%2C7340%2CL-3268794%2C00.html




3.


Israeli Troops and Armor Surge Into Gaza
By Laura King and Ken Ellingwood
The Los Angeles Times

Wednesday 28 June 2006

The Jewish state presses for release of a soldier captured by militants. Officials say there is no plan to seize the Palestinian territory.

Gaza City - Israeli troops and tanks, backed by fierce aerial bombardment, punched their way into the southern Gaza Strip early today, hours after Israel declared that time was running out for Palestinian militants to free an Israeli soldier seized in a cross-border raid.

The offensive was by far the largest since Israel unilaterally pulled its troops out of the seaside territory more than nine months ago. In the intervening months, Israel has responded to Palestinian militants' rocket attacks with airstrikes and artillery barrages.

But this is the first time since the withdrawal that large concentrations of Israeli forces have entered the restive, densely populated coastal territory.

The attack began late Tuesday when Israeli warplanes blew up a bridge in central Gaza, with loud booms reverberating across Gaza City - a move Israeli military officials said was meant to prevent the captors of Cpl. Gilad Shalit, 19, from moving him.

Later, two other bridges and a power plant were struck, sending billows of white smoke into a night sky lighted by flames and flares. [This was obviously to prevent the captors from using electricity to see Shalit.]

The air offensive in effect sliced Gaza into three sectors and knocked out power to large swaths, though electricity was restored at least temporarily in Gaza City and other northern areas. There was no immediate word on any Palestinian casualties or the number of Israeli troops that crossed into Gaza.

Military analysts said the incursion was the first phase of an operation that would intensify, possibly to include targeting Hamas leaders, unless Shalit is released.

"We are trying to make it clear to the Palestinian Authority and terrorist organizations that we're very serious about this and about Cpl. Shalit's safety and quick return home," said Capt. Noa Meir, an Israeli military spokeswoman.

Officials said Israel did not want to seize the Gaza Strip, which it occupied for 38 years.

"We have no interest in returning to a place we have left. We seek dialogue [?], not a bloodbath," Israel's infrastructure minister, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, said early today. "If they return the soldier, sit down at the negotiating table - we're out. There's nothing for us there." [They just destroyed it all in collectivized terrorism.]

In the hours before the strike, Palestinians girded for attack, topping bulldozed mounds of sand along urban thoroughfares with barbed wire and laying what appeared to be homemade explosives in the expected path of Israeli tanks massed just across the border.

Against the backdrop of battle preparations by both sides, the Palestinians' ruling Hamas movement and the rival Fatah faction announced Tuesday that they had tentatively agreed on a political platform that could lead to negotiations with Israel.

However, the move appeared to be more of an effort to present a symbolic united front at a time of crisis than to genuinely alter the hard-line stance that has led to the Hamas-dominated government's diplomatic and economic isolation. The Islamist Hamas movement emphasized that it was still not willing to acknowledge Israel's right to exist.

The offensive was sparked by an audacious cross-border raid Sunday in which Palestinian militants captured Shalit and killed two other soldiers. Two of the Palestinian attackers were killed.

The consortium of Hamas-linked groups claiming to hold Shalit warned Tuesday against any attempt to rescue him, saying it would result in failure and bloodshed. That was a chilling and probably deliberate reminder to Israelis that the last time Palestinian militants managed to seize an Israeli soldier, in 1994, he was subsequently killed in an Israeli rescue raid.

"The soldier is in a secure location to which the Zionists' reach does not extend," Mohammed Abdelal, a spokesman for the Popular Resistance Committees, one of three groups thought to have taken part in the raid, told reporters in Gaza City.

The purported captors have demanded the release of Palestinian prisoners who are female or younger than 18 in exchange for information about Shalit, but have provided no proof he is alive.

Israel said no prisoner exchange was being contemplated.

Israeli military sources said they believed Shalit was being held in southern Gaza, a stronghold for militant Palestinian groups that have engaged in abductions of foreigners and Palestinian political rivals.

The Israeli troop incursion was concentrated east of the southern border town of Rafah. But the scale and intended duration of the military push were not clear.

In the initial offensive, Israeli soldiers did not enter Gaza City or its immediate environs, where in some neighborhoods masked militants flooded the streets and mosque loudspeakers called on people to resist.

"Take up your rifles and fight!" a senior leader of Hamas' military wing, Nizar Rayan, said in a broadcast exhortation.

Complex mediation efforts led by Egypt continued Tuesday. Because Shalit holds dual French-Israeli citizenship, French diplomats were also involved, but they were close-mouthed about their role.

The United States also urged restraint on Israel's part.

"There really needs to be an effort now to try and calm the situation," Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told reporters en route to Pakistan.

Seeking to step up the pressure on the Hamas government, Israel closed its border crossings with Gaza on Monday. Combined with a naval blockade, the closure has effectively barred the importation of food, fuel and other goods. Israeli media reported that government leaders also were considering cutting off electricity and water.

Vice Premier Shimon Peres said Israel was asking governments to withhold donations to the Palestinian Authority until the soldier is freed.

Peres also said it appeared that Hamas' political leader, Khaled Meshaal, a hard-liner who is based in Damascus, the Syrian capital, was responsible for Sunday's attack - the most explicit public accusation against Meshaal from a senior Israeli official.

"It's clear that Khaled Meshaal gave the order for this operation, and he wants to destroy prospects for peace," Peres told reporters after visiting Shalit's parents in the Galilee region.

In the streets of Gaza City on Tuesday, the mood was one of anger and defiance, with many saying that Palestinians should not free the Israeli soldier without getting something in return.

Atop makeshift barricades of sand, concrete blocks and debris, young Palestinian boys played with toy rifles. Aerial drones and other aircraft could be heard circling overhead, and Israeli gunships were visible through the heat haze offshore in the Mediterranean.

Adding to the jittery atmosphere, a car exploded Tuesday close to the Gaza City residence of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who was not in the building at the time.

One man, described as a Hamas militant, was killed and several others were wounded. Palestinians called it an assassination by Israel, but the Israeli military denied any involvement.

The announcement of a political agreement by Hamas and Fatah came after weeks of negotiations, and after Abbas said last month that he would put the question of whether to recognize Israel to Palestinian voters in a referendum.

Under the tentative agreement, Abbas would be empowered to hold negotiations with Israel but any agreements reached would require the approval of the Hamas-dominated parliament.

The document appeared to fall far short of international and Israeli demands on Hamas. Israel dismissed the accord as a "diplomatic non-starter."

The negotiations over a Hamas-Fatah political pact and the capture of Shalit have laid bare the divisions within Hamas.

The group's military wing, thought to report primarily to exiled leaders in Damascus, said it took part in the raid that brought about the soldier's capture. The Hamas-led government, meanwhile, urged that the soldier not be harmed.

"We ... don't want to reach a situation of bloodshed," government spokesman Ghazi Hamad, who speaks fluent Hebrew, told Israel's Army Radio.

Defense Minister Amir Peretz said during a visit Tuesday to the agricultural community of Kerem Shalom, where the Palestinian attack took place, that Israel had no choice but to respond decisively to a raid on its soil.

 http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/062806Z.shtml


4.

Israel seizes Hamas leaders
Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:18 PM BST

By Nidal al-Mughrabi

GAZA (Reuters) - Israel seized eight Hamas cabinet ministers and dozens of officials on Thursday and prepared to step up its Gaza military offensive to pressure Palestinian militants to free a kidnapped soldier.

Hundreds of Palestinian gunmen wielding automatic rifles and anti-tank weapons took up positions waiting for Israeli forces to open a second front along the Gaza Strip's northern border, one day after tanks and infantry pushed into southern Gaza.

In an implied threat to Damascus-based Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal and his Syrian host, Israeli warplanes buzzed one of President Bashar al-Assad's palaces on Wednesday, breaking the sound barrier. A Syrian official said the air force fired at the planes.

A Palestinian security officer said he saw several Israeli tanks roll into northern Gaza before dawn. But an Israeli military spokeswoman said troops were not yet deployed to begin ground operations in the area.

In preparation for the offensive, Israel dropped leaflets on northern Gaza urging residents to avoid areas troops may target.

In a night-time blitz in the occupied West Bank, troops arrested Finance Minister Omar Abdel-Razeq and seven other cabinet members -- a third of the Hamas cabinet -- along with nearly 20 legislators of the governing Islamist group, Palestinian officials said.

Many of the arrests were made at the same Ramallah hotel where the ministers were staying.

Israel said 64 Hamas officials in all were taken into custody and vowed to seize other members of the militant group, whose charter calls for Israel's destruction.

"Recent events and especially those of the last few days [is that in Israel or Gaza you are talking about?] prove that the results of the elections....were translated into a government policy of terrorism," Israel's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Jacob Dalal, an army spokesman, said: "They are not being used as bargaining chips. These are people with terrorist records, with allegations and charges pending against them."

Israel, which quit the Gaza Strip nearly a year ago, holds Hamas responsible for the abduction of Corporal Gilad Shalit in a cross-border raid on Sunday and has demanded it ensure his safe return or suffer the consequences.

Hamas political leaders say they were not involved in planning Sunday's attack by the movement's armed wing and two other militant factions.

Israeli leaders have dropped strong hints that top Hamas men in the Gaza Strip, including Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, could be targets for assassination unless Shalit is returned.

Abu Ubaida, a spokesman for Hamas's Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades, called the seizure of Hamas leaders an attempt to blackmail the group into releasing information about Shalit. "This is not going to happen," he said.

NO IMMUNITY

Hamas came to power after winning parliamentary elections in January. It has rejected Western demands it recognise the Jewish state, renounce violence and accept past interim peace deals.

"No one is immune," Israeli National Infrastructure Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer said after the West Bank seizures. "This is not a government. It is a murderous organisation."

Adding to the tensions, the body of an 18-year-old Jewish settler was found near Ramallah, Israeli security sources said.

The Popular Resistance Committees, a Palestinian militant group, said it kidnapped and killed Eliyahu Asheri "in response to the Israeli aggression."

There have been no clashes with Palestinian gunmen since the start of the Gaza offensive, but air strikes have knocked out power and water supplies, as well as destroying several bridges in the territory, home to 1.4 million people.

A strike in Gaza City on Thursday targeted a soccer field at the Hamas-backed Islamic University. Another in Gaza caused a fire in what the Israeli army said was a weapons storage depot, and which Palestinians described as an appliance shop.

There were no injuries in either raid.

(Additional reporting by Mohammed Assadi and Wafa Amr in Ramallah and Allyn Fisher-Ilan and Jeffrey Heller in Jerusalem)

 link to today.reuters.co.uk

5.


Israel Bombs Islamic University In Gaza - Witnesses
6-29-2006

GAZA (Reuters) - An Israeli warplane fired a missile on Thursday at the pro-Hamas Islamic University in Gaza City, setting off a huge explosion, witnesses said.

An Israeli army spokesman said the planes had targeted an open area in Gaza City. Witnesses said the missile crashed into a soccer field. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

The attack came as Israeli troops were poised to widen a incursion in the coastal Gaza Strip to recover a kidnapped soldier.

 http://www.rense.com/general72/bombs.htm

6.

Israel Commits State Terrorism - Pravda
Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey
Pravda.ru
6-29-2006

The flagrant practice of State Terrorism perpetrated by Israel, replying to terrorist acts with terrorism, can only be counter-productive. If Tel Aviv thinks that destroying civilian infrastructures will being Cpl. Shalit back, it is right in a body bag.

If the UK had replied to terrorist acts by the IRA by massacres of civilians in Belfast, the whole world would have shouted out in horror.

When Moscow launches an operation to liquidate terrorist elements or to exterminate bandits in Chechnya, a hail of criticism falls on Moscow from those countries which protect the leaders of the "rebels" or "freedom fighters", the international terrorists whose main aim is to destabilise the State of the Russian Federation.

When the Russian authorities acted in Beslan to free the children being held by these pigs, the European Union even asked for explanations. Yet when the State of Israel massacres Palestinians enjoying a picnic on the beach or when great destruction is caused to free a hostage, the world is quiet.

How can Tel Aviv expect to win the propaganda war, claim the moral high ground and win the hearts and minds of the international community by destroying civilian infrastructures in Gaza with military hardware, namely an act of State Terrorism? However wrong, criminal and unacceptable the kidnapping of Corporal Gilad Shalit was, an action carried out not by "militants" as some say but rather by terrorists, it is equally unacceptable to target bridges and power stations with military hardware.

This is a war crime and it is State Terrorism However Tel Aviv will never figure on the US State Department's black list on terrorism basically because Tel Aviv does what it wants. It is one of the foundations of the New World Order, where disrespect for the law seems to be a rule and not an exception.

 link to english.pravda.ru


7.

Israeli missiles pound Gaza into new Dark Age in 'collective punishment'

By Donald Macintyre
Belfast Telegraph
29 June 2006

As a textbook example of hi-tech precision bombardment it could hardly be improved. Smoke was still rising yesterday from the scorched wreckage of the six transformers at Gaza's only power station, each destroyed by a single missile fired by an Israeli warplane some 10 hours earlier.

Had they hit the huge cylindrical diesel tank 100 metres away they would have set the whole power station alight. But the strike was clinically effective, cutting all the electricity to 700,000 Gaza consumers, threatening water supplies and depriving its public of light, cooking, broadcast news, and - a crucial issue in scorching summer temperatures - fans.

"I'm so surprised that they did this," said Dr Derar Abu Sisi, the operations manager at the Al Nusirat power station. "We have been right through the worst of the intifada but this didn't happen." It would, Dr Abu Sisi said, take a "minimum of three to six months" to restore supplies at a cost between $5m (2.8m) and $7m. "The Geneva Convention says it is not allowed to attack infrastructure for the civilian people," he added. "You might expect that economic infrastructure could be a target in the last stages of a war. But this is not like that."

The damage to Gaza's power supply was condemned as "unacceptable and barbaric collective punishment of civilians, including women, children and old people" by the office of Mahmoud Abbas, which complained it was intensifying what it says are the difficulties he already faces in trying to secure the safe release of Gilad Shalit, the 19-year-old Israeli army corporal abducted by militants - including members of Hamas's military wing - on Sunday.

The crisis escalated yesterday as Hamas called for the prisoner swap Israel has so far refused to entertain; another faction responsible for Cpl Shalit's abduction, the Popular Resistance Committees, threatened to kill Eliahu Asheri, 18, a settler it says it is holding, if Israel does not end its military campaign in Gaza, and a third, the al-Aqsa Martyrs, claimed to have seized a 62-year-old man from the central Israeli city of Rishon Lezion.

In retaliation, Israeli soldiers last night arrested the Labour Minister, Mohammed Barghouthi, a member of the Hamas-led Palestinian government, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Palestinian security officials said.

The army fired a barrage of artillery rounds into northern Gaza throughout the night, including at the Islamic University in Gaza City, as it prepared to tell local residents to leave their homes before moving in force into Beit Hanoun to attack Qassam rocket launching units.

Roads in the southern Gaza city of Khan Younis were also targeted. The Israeli army said they were to prevent the kidnapped soldier being moved and to cut off access to militants launching rockets at Israel.

Ehud Olmert, the Israeli Prime Minister, said that the army would not hesitate to carry out "extreme action" in the coming days to bring the abducted soldier back to his family.

The aerial attack on the power station was one of four conducted early yesterday. The other three were on bridges in central Gaza, which the Israel Defence Forces said were intended to hamper attempts by Cpl Shalit's captors to move him from the south to the north.

Yesterday, however, a side road alongside the most easterly of these, which fords the currently dried-up river running through the Wadi Gaza on the main north-south Salahadin road, was busy with traffic which had turned off to avoid the wrecked bridge and continue its journey unimpeded towards Gaza City from the south.

Another target was an old railway bridge 200 metres to the west, which the army says can be used by vehicles but which carried a now-broken water pipeline to two refugee camps.

Zakri al-Ouh, 62, a construction worker who lives near by and helped to build the two-lane road bridge under Egyptian supervision in 1965 and 1966, said: "When it rains then it will be impossible to use the road, but at the moment I can't see how this can help the soldier." He added: "At first I was in favour of handing back the soldier as quickly as possible. We have to consider the power of Israel against our own weakness. "But now they have done this I think there should be an exchange of prisoners before he is handed back." The southernmost town of Rafah - to which roads were notably less crowded than usual yesterday - still has power because it takes its electricity from Israel. But Rafah, which had most to gain from Israel's withdrawal last August because it had been the most ravaged in all of the occupied territories during four years of the intifada, now fears a return of conflict.

Yesterday morning, with Israeli troops and tanks now occupying the disused airport two kilometres from the town centre, Maher Abu Ermana 21, was doing a brisk trade in sacks of flour, oil, sugar and beans provided by aid agencies, sold to him by impoverished refugee recipients trying to make a few extra shekels, and invariably labelled "not for resale".

Such is Gaza's dysfunctional economic cycle that Mr Abu Ermana is now selling his wares to customers stocking up in fear of war shortages. Up until two days ago, after Cpl Gilad Shalit was abducted, he said: "I was selling two sacks a day. Now I am selling 20 to 40."

"We are all worried," said Zakia Mahmoud, 40, who has 10 children. "I hope it will not return to what it was before. If it does, we will lose half of our sons."

The most audible element of the "message" Israel says it is delivering to Gaza in the hope of securing the safe release of Cpl Shalit - in the event of which it says it will pull back its forces from the Strip - are the sonic booms produced by warplanes deliberately flying faster than the speed of sound over Gaza.

Yesterday's booms - which produce the shattering sound of a heavy explosion in the immediate vicinity - started at 5am and were the first for several months, after two human rights groups filed a High Court petition saying that they constituted an illegal "collective punishment".

But the most powerful impact of Israel's - so far - "specific and limited" military campaign is likely to be power cuts. Gaza City's main Shifa hospital said its generator was working 24 hours a day but because of fuel shortages could keep going for only two weeks. Mark Regev, the Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman, insisted the attacks on power stations and bridges were justified....

The Israeli human rights agency Btselem warned that the power cuts would jeopardise water supplies and health care. It stressed that Israel had the right to enact "all legal measures" to secure the release of Cpl Shalit but not those which conflict with international humanitarian law prohibitions against "objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population".

Warplanes 'buzz' Syrian President

Israeli warplanes "buzzed" the summer residence of Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian President, yesterday to pressure him to secure the release of the abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Military officials said the jets flew over President Assad's palace near the coastal port city of Latkia. Television reports said the Syrian President had been at home during the predawn flights. Mr Assad was apparently targeted because Israel believes there are close links between Syria and Hamas. Khaled Mashaal, the exiled Hamas leader believed by many Palestinians, as well as Israel, as having sanctioned the abduction of Cpl Shalit on Sunday last week, is based in Damascus. Officials said the aircraft flying low had made a "noise" on the ground but did not say whether they created sonic booms of the sort generated in Gaza.

State-run Syrian television said two Israeli aircraft had flown over the country's coast in an "aggressive act and a provocation". It claimed "national air defences opened fire in the direction of the planes, and they dispersed".

---
 http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/story.jsp?story=696738


8.


UPDATE: Israel warns: free soldier or democratically elected PM Haniyeh dies; Israel kidnapped 32 MPs; bombs Interior Ministry bldg., 20 other targets, etc.


Israel warns: free soldier or PM dies
Middle East correspondent Martin Chulov
July 01, 2006

ISRAEL last night threatened to assassinate Palestinian Prime Minister Ismael Haniyeh if Hamas militants did not release a captured Israeli soldier unharmed.

The unprecedented warning was delivered to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in a letter as Israel debated a deal offered by Hamas to free Corporal Gilad Shalit.

It came as Israeli military officials readied a second invasion force for a huge offensive into Gaza.

Hamas's Gaza-based political leaders, including Mr Haniyeh, had already gone into hiding.

But last night's direct threat to kill Mr Haniyeh, a democratically elected head of state, sharply raised the stakes.

The bid to free Corporal Shalit was brokered by Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who last night warned Hamas it faced severe consequences if it did not curb its "extreme stance" and described the growing conflict as a lightning rod for Palestinian vengeance.

Jerusalem has made no official comment, but Egyptian state media said Israel had found the offer unacceptable. Israel has not spelt out the terms demanded by Hamas, but earlier this week it refused to buy into talk of a prisoner swap.

Thousands of Hamas supporters protested in Gaza City late on Thursday over the arrest by Israeli forces of up to 32 Hamas MPs on the West Bank that day.

A Hamas spokesman said the group would never recognise Israel, in spite of a deal its leaders signed this week offering implicit recognition of the Jewish state in return for easing an economic blockade.

Israeli fighter jets bombed 20 targets in Gaza, including the Interior Ministry,....while artillery hit the northern strip with 500 shells in the 24 hours until yesterday morning.

Jewish settler Eliyahu Asheri, who was murdered by militants this week, was buried on Thursday as leaders of the Popular Resistance Committees pledged to seize more hostages in the West Bank. No further word has emerged about another suspected Jewish hostage, Noach Moskowitz, who Israeli police said was found dead hours after Mr Asheri's remains were found.

Much of Gaza, including two main hospitals, was without power and running water as a UN aid chief warned that the 1.4 million residents of the strip were three days away from a humanitarian crisis.

"They are heading for the abyss unless they get electricity and fuel restored," said emergency relief co-ordinator Jan Egeland, who urged militants to free Corporal Shalit and stop firing rockets into Israel.

Residents complain that sonic booms caused by Israeli jets traumatise children and that shelling confines families to their homes.

...

Mr Olmert said the decision to invade northern Gaza had already been delayed to allow Mr Mubarak's negotiations to continue.

The arrested Hamas legislators have been sent to security prisons and many will stand trial [? trial? for what? you invaded their country] on terrorism offences. The detentions have hurt Hamas's already limited ability to govern and are likely to force a regime change.

...

Egypt and the neighbouring Arab states of Jordan and Lebanon fear a war between Israel and the Palestinians could lead to uprisings within their own borders, which house many Palestinian refugees.

--
 link to www.theaustralian.news.com.au
palestinian blogposts; quick cyberwar on 750 Israel gov't/corp. websites; 30.Jun.2006 19:13

Mona

things are clear for me , the military operation in Gaza ,aims to destroy the infrastructure completely,to end up with no goverment no PA , no negotiations with palestinians,peace is not israel goal, israel is a colonial , racist regime, hiding behind democracy and its citizens security.


I WILL CONTINUE FURTHE UPDATES ON MY BLOG at  http://fromgaza.blogspot.com/


Hackers left the message: You're killing Palestinians, we're killing servers. The group's spokesman previously told Ynet that "we are a group of Moroccan hackers that hack into sites as part of the resistance in the war with Israel. We attack Israeli sites every day. This is our duty... hacking is not a crime." Added another group member: "We want Israel to stop fighting. Stop killing children and we'll stop hacking." According to the spokesman, the group's members are all Moroccan youths, under the age of 20.


From Gaza, With Love (Attack Underway At Writing)
GazaBlogspot.com
6-30-2006

[previous updates by Mona are also on her blog. Worth reading to have an inkling of what life in Gaza is like these days for the inhabitants. No one who does not live there, does not undergo what the people are undergoing, can ever really understand what it must be like. Following Mona's update here is the Washington Post depiction of events. It is the only news report (as opposed to op-ed) that I found that furnishes a bit of the 'human interest' along with the rest in a dozen or so English language on-line newspapers and media that I glanced through today. Dorothy]

Friday, June 30, 2006
Gaza-friday night 1.30 am

the power still off , it comes on and off irregularly, the electricity company is trying hard , to supply power to 1.5 million population,who used to get electricity by the power plant , that has been completely destroyed 2 nights ago ,tonight another electrical generators has been attacked and destroyed completely , in the middle camps and jabalia ,i tried to explain to my daughter the complicated mechanisms of power distribution , and how the electrical company is trying hard,she was so frustrated ,to learn that we will be receiving patchy power for another 3 month AT LEAST.and we need to rationalise many things , food consumption,water use , going out,may be smiling and laughing ,and the worst is when the hospitals had to rationalise surgical operations , due to lack of medications,and power and fuel.

life will continue and the shameful official arabic and international silence will continue, this is not the start, and will not be the end. Palestinian people will continue their struggle against injustice and occupation of the large famous democracy in the area(Israel), and yet occupying force??? it is not strange it is happenning in Iraq, by the most powerful and democratic country USA,with its support, Israel has free hand , both are new colonial forces.

they are attacking Gaza city right now , jablia, and Beit Lahia, the ER department of AlAwda Hospital ,received 7 casualities , (moderetly injured).
they launched at least 15 missiles,the noise of the jet fighters and Apachi heliocapters ,interrupted my already interrupted sleep,iam fully awake now , i didnot get good sleep ,for 4 days , the targets were different places ,inside gaza city.

things are clear for me , the military operation in Gaza ,aims to destroy the infrastructure completely,to end up with no goverment no PA , no negotiations with palestinians,peace is not israel goal, israel is a colonial , racist regeime,hiding behind democracy.and its citizens security.

THE AIR RAID IS CONTINUING

posted by Mona_Elfarra at 3:00 AM | 18 comments

Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Gaza under large scale military attack
Dear freinds

i sent this email to my feind Hilary in the uk , i felt tense and wanted
to share what iam going through with her , i think i like to share it with
you too , and try to tell the world what is going on


in solidarity
Mona ElFarra


Dear Hilary

I am writing while the jet fighters are in the sky , with their horrible
sound , bringing death and horror,it is 10.30pm, I am still like everyone
waiting , i hope they will not go ahead with their operation into Gaza,
the outcome could be horrible ,the resistance movemet are going ahead with
their preperation too,but the balance of power is obvious to wich side
,any way Israel with resistance or no resistance is attacking us all the
time, but this time will be different ,and in the process many civilian
lives will be lost,iam listening to the local radio, it seems that the
operation started in khanyunis ,the artilary started shelling ,under the
cover of apachi heliocapters,and jet fighters , i am able to write now ,
do not know what will happen next,the power might cut off soon , few hours
ago , Mohammed and Sondos had a narrow escape during their way home , a
car exploded 150 meters from my home , close to the president home, one
person died and 4 injured, i cannot help feeling of worry, i am after all
a mother , ,



i shall stay strong , tommorrow iam going to the red crescent society
office, we are supposed to get some medications to be used at Alawda
hospital for the emergency department,that was stopped at the closed
borders , i am hoping to get it through with the help of WHO , i am not
sure if we shall receive them in time, but i shall keep trying.
the aeroplanes sound in the sky is geting louder .
i shall keep writing , it is big releif for me ,
love you all

Mona
ps Hilary is my freind in the Uk
Alawda Hospital is inside jabalia refujee camp, 2 weeks ago, it received
the Galia family children,who lost their parents during the beach
incident.



Mohamed and Sondos are my dear kids, i pray for the safety of all the the
children of the world,including israeli children

ALAWDA HOSPITAL MEDICTION SUPPLIES IS ENOUGH FOR ONE WEEK , OF ROUTINE
USE,IF THE OPERATION CONTINUE , AND CASULITIES NUMBERS INCREASE A HEALTH
DESASTER WILL FOLLOW IAM JUST WARNING

the operation against Gaza ,is continuing,it is 1.30 am,the gaza bridge
has been destroyed,the jet fighters are still in the sky hitting many
targets.

the gaza power plant was hit bt at least 7 missiles , i can see a big fire
from my window , and hear the sirens of emergency vans,the gun boats
started shelling too , i live by the beach .

,
this is updating in the morning ,28th of june 7 am last night , it was very dangerous for me to reach the computer the power was cut off , i stayed on the floor with my son and daughter, we did not sleep at all like all the residents in gaza strip.while trying to get some hours of sleep , we did not manage , the jet fighters sonic bombs started showering us , it is very loud and horrifying voice , they are continuing their attacks.

i contacted the hospital several times , no casualities yet, the operation
is going on in different parts of the gaza strip, but it is focused in the
south,rafah, i have no idea about the casulities


I WILL CONTINUE FURTHE UPDATES ON MY BLOG at  http://fromgaza.blogspot.com/

In Gaza, Seeking Shelter From Israeli Fire
Missile Strikes Set Interior Ministry Ablaze

By Scott Wilson
Washington Post Foreign Service
Friday, June 30, 2006

BEIT HANOUN, Gaza Strip, June 29 -- Fatin Shabaat left home here Thursday with her three hip-high children, looking for safety from a slow-moving Israeli military assault launched to free a 19-year-old soldier being held by Palestinian gunmen.

Israeli artillery batteries lobbed shells around this farming community in the Gaza Strip's northeastern corner throughout the day, after leaflets dropped from the sky warned residents to remain clear of Israeli military operations. Shells whistled overhead, slamming into the fields and dunes where Palestinian gunmen regularly fire crude rockets at the Israeli city of Sderot, a white smudge along a ridgeline three miles away.

Although she never received one of the written warnings, Shabaat clutched her children, ages 2, 3 and 4, and headed to her father's home in the town center, far from the dirt paths that have served in the past as routes for Israeli tanks. An Israeli airstrike had already left her without electricity, along with about 700,000 other residents of the strip, and artillery shells were falling close to her back yard.

"This is only going to get worse," said Shabaat, 25, who despite the impending clash favors keeping the Israeli soldier captive until at least some Palestinian prisoners are released from Israeli jails. "We will not get anything otherwise. And they are going to invade anyway. This soldier is just an excuse."

Shabaat's grim prognosis regarding the crisis over the captured Israeli soldier, Cpl. Gilad Shalit, was echoed in the West Bank, where the Israeli military arrested more than 60 officials from the governing Hamas movement in a pre-dawn sweep. The detainees included two dozen members of parliament and nine cabinet ministers, more than a third of the Hamas cabinet.

[Early Friday morning, Israeli military aircraft fired missiles at the Interior Ministry headquarters in Gaza City, setting the building ablaze. An army spokesman said the ministry, headed by Saed Siyam of Hamas, was being used "for the planning and carrying out of terrorist activities." Siyam's office was struck directly.

[Israeli airstrikes also hit several other targets Friday, including the headquarters of a new Interior Ministry militia dominated by Hamas members and a building that military officials said was used by al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the Fatah party's armed wing. Missiles also struck roads in the north and south of the strip, some landing near a key bridge that had already been hit this week. There were no immediate reports of injuries.]

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government holds Hamas responsible for Shalit's capture, which occurred Sunday during an attack on an army post just outside Gaza's southeastern corner that left two soldiers dead. The radical Islamic movement's armed wing was involved in the attack and is one of three groups demanding the release of 421 Palestinian women and minors in Israeli prisons in exchange for information about Shalit's welfare.

Israel has arrested elected members of the Palestinian legislature before, but never as many as it did Thursday.

Mark Regev, a spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, said the detained Hamas officials would be either charged and brought to trial or released in the days ahead. He said plans to arrest Hamas officials for belonging to what Israel designates a terrorist organization had been in the works since Hamas's armed wing ended a 15-month cease-fire with Israel after the June 9 explosion on a Gaza beach that killed seven members of a Palestinian family.

Regev denied speculation that the Hamas legislators would be offered in exchange for Shalit's freedom. "Hamas's involvement in terrorism is the reason for these arrests, nothing more," he said.

But Palestinian political analysts said they believed the arrests were timed to undermine a rare political agreement reached this week by leaders of the two leading Palestinian political movements, Fatah and Hamas.

The two parties have been at odds since Hamas's electoral victory in January over how to respond to the international economic sanctions that have choked off most of the government's funds. The United States and European Union also designate Hamas a terrorist organization, a classification that led to a freeze of most foreign aid.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who heads the secular Fatah movement, and Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas agreed in principle this week to a unified political program that would usher in a national unity government in the weeks ahead and endorse the creation of a future Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, territory occupied by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war.

Since it was founded nearly two decades ago, Hamas has called for an Islamic state across a far larger territory that includes Israel. Abbas and others had hoped the shift in Hamas's position would persuade Israel to revive peace talks, which have been dormant for more than five years.

"I don't think that, at a time ministers are in prison, a national unity government with Fatah can be established," said Ali Jarbawi, a political science professor at Beir Zeit University in the West Bank. "It won't have legitimacy with Palestinian public opinion. What Israel did through these arrests is interfere in a process that would stabilize internal Palestinian relations, thus allowing it to continue to claim that there is no Palestinian partner" for peace talks.

This town, which has been under the arc of Israeli military fire for months, readied itself in small ways Thursday for what many of its 30,000 residents feared was an imminent assault. But Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz later postponed a ground incursion into Beit Hanoun, which had been scheduled to begin Thursday evening, after Egyptian diplomats requested more time to negotiate Shalit's release.

A senior Israeli military official said Peretz did so after signs that Khaled Mashal, Hamas's political leader in exile, could be softening his position. Israeli officials and Egyptian diplomats say Mashal, who lives in the Syrian capital of Damascus, has been the most important voice inside the organization opposing Shalit's release.

"If he would change his mind and come around, he really has a lot of influence," the senior military official said. "We will try to wait as long as we can if we feel pressure is being put on him. We are not in a hurry."

But the official also said the operation here was not only about freeing Shalit but also about "weakening the Hamas government" and ending rocket fire into southern Israel. In that sense, the official said, Shalit's release through diplomacy may not be enough to guarantee "our strategy of making sure they know that there will be a very high price to pay for future kidnappings."

Before the operation was suspended, some residents here decamped to stay with relatives, while others prepared to retreat. Some accused Israel of using the capture of one soldier -- at a time when the Israeli government holds 8,503 Palestinians in prison -- to stage an attack that would do little to free him.

Others fired rockets toward Israel. Two of the missiles traced white contour trails against the blue sky during a brief lull in the Israeli artillery barrage.

"We have a plan to withdraw if the Israelis attack," said Hamada Abdullah Hamada, 31, a sergeant with the Palestinian national forces who was manning a makeshift outpost between the town and the Gaza border.

>From the five shipping containers that formed the post, Hamada could see flatbed trucks moving Israeli tanks along the border. The two rockets rose from behind a nearby agricultural school a quarter-mile from Hamada's concrete pillbox, and Israeli guns answered minutes later with steady, thumping fire.

Pointing to the tank movements, Hamada said: "Even before the soldier was kidnapped, the Israelis were doing this. They will come in."

Special correspondent Samuel Sockol in Jerusalem contributed to this report.

2006 The Washington Post Company

 http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article
/2006/06/29/AR2006062900432.html?sub=AR


2.

Major Israeli websites hacked

More than 750 Israeli websites hacked in recent hours. Among them: Soldier's Treasury Bank, Rambam Hospital, and Globus Group ticket center. Hackers: You're killing Palestinians, we're killing servers
Gal Mor, Ehud Kinan

Unprecedented number of Israeli websites hacked: Hundreds of websites were damaged by hackers in recent hours, following IDF activity in the Gaza Strip. The hackers are members of the Moroccan "Team Evil" group, responsible for most of the website damage in Israel in the past year. This is the largest, most concentrated attack on Israeli websites in recent years.



A Ynet investigation revealed that more than 750 Israeli websites, on a number of different domains, were hacked into and damaged in recent days. Prominent among them were the Soldier's Treasury Bank, Bank Hapoalim (not the main page), Rambam Hospital, the Society for Culture and Housing, BMW Israel, Subaru Israel, Jump Fashion, non-profit organization "Yedid," Kadima's youth website, and the Globus Group ticket center. Many of these sites have not yet returned to normal.

Hackers left the message: You're killing Palestinians, we're killing servers.

Early on Wednesday, the IDF began operation "Summer Rains" in Gaza: Forces entered the southern end of the strip, adjacent to the point of Cpl. Gilad Shavit's kidnap. The air force attacked a power station and blacked out areas of Gaza. Three bridges were bombed in central Gaza, in order to prevent movement of the kidnapped soldier.

Many Israeli websites are hacked every day - most of these are small sites, with inadequate information security. It is significantly different when the sites are ones of large companies, who have adequate defenses from this sort of attack.



Past success of Team Evil



In the past, Team Evil succeeded in hacking into several sites of medium-sized but recognized Israeli companies. In April, they hit tens of sites, including those of the "Shilav" children's store, "The Blue Square" supermarket and McDonald's.



The group's spokesman previously told Ynet that "we are a group of Moroccan hackers that hack into sites as part of the resistance in the war with Israel. We attack Israeli sites every day. This is our duty... hacking is not a crime."



Added another group member: "We want Israel to stop fighting. Stop killing children and we'll stop hacking." According to the spokesman, the group's members are all Moroccan youths, under the age of 20.



The increase in hacking of websites following military operations is a well-known phenomenon, in Israel and in the rest of the world. A similar increase was seen in attacks on both Israeli and Arab websites in the first days of the second intifada, pursuant to military operations that took place in Gaza, Judea and Samaria at that time.

 link to www.ynetnews.com

historical comment 01.Jul.2006 18:06

Uri Avnery

"The "kidnapped" soldier served as a pretext for an operation which must have been prepared a long time ago. The Israeli and international public has been told that the aim is to set him free, but in practice it has put his life in greater jeopardy. If the soldiers come near to where he is hidden, he could be killed in the cross-fire - as happened some years ago to the soldier Nakhshon Waksman, who was captured by Hamas. He was killed in the exchange of fire between the soldiers and the Palestinians. Waksman would probably be alive today, if there had been an exchange of prisoners instead."

The Qassam, a simple and inexpensive weapon, causes more panic than real damage, like the German V-rockets fired on London in World War II. It terrorizes the population, and that is its aim.




Agatha In The Rain
By Uri Avnery
7-1-2006

"Israel has declared war on the Palestinian people! The Palestinian people will answer in kind! The Palestinian rebellion will go on! The Palestinian fighters are steadfast in the service of the nation! Down with the Nazi-Zionist occupation! Out with the unclean infidels from the Holy Land! Destroyed Rafah - we shall build you anew! Long live the Palestinian revolution! Long live the State of Palestine!"

A Hamas leaflet of last week? Not exactly. With appropriate changes, this leaflet was published on July 2, 1946 - sixty years ago almost to the day - by the Haganah, after "Black Saturday".

Then, in the wake of a daring commando action by the Palmakh ("shock troops" of the Haganah), which blew up a number of bridges, the British government of Palestine decided to carry out a plan prepared well in advance. It was code-named "Agatha". On June 29, 1946, 17 thousand British soldiers fanned out all over the Jewish towns and kibbutzim to confiscate arms and documents and arrest the leaders of the Jewish community. The British government affirmed its determination to stamp out terrorism. In Jerusalem, the soldiers occupied the headquarters of the Jewish Agency, the de facto government of the Jewish "state within the state", and confiscated many documents that clearly established its close connections with the "terrorist headquarters" - the joint command of the Haganah, the Irgun and the Stern Group, which worked closely together at the time.

The soldiers broke into the homes of the political leaders of the Jewish community and arrested most of the Jewish Agency "ministers". The leaders were detained in Latrun. But the commanders of the underground organizations decided to continue fighting, in order to prove to the British that the arrest of the leaders had not silenced them.

"Black Saturday" was a milestone in the fight against the British. Within a year, they decided to leave the country.

The similarity between the British "Agatha" and the Israeli "Summer Rains" is striking. This shows that every occupation regime is condemned to repeat the actions of its predecessors, even when they have been proved hopeless. This does not mean that all occupiers are fools - only that the logic of occupation itself condemns them to do foolish things.

THE AIM of the present operation is, ostensibly, to free the soldier Gilad Shalit, who was captured by the Palestinian underground (consisting of several organizations), in an attack that even an Israeli military expert called "a daring commando action".

If our army had kept its high military standard, it would immediately have replaced all the commanders responsible for the debacle. 50 years ago this would have been done . But we have a different army now. Nobody was removed. The failed commanders just called the attack "a terrorist act", the fighters "terrorists" and the captured soldier "kidnapped".

The action proves, of course, an old military maxim: for every means of defense a means of attack can be found, and vice versa. The "security" fence that surrounds the Gaza Strip on all sides (except the sea), the like of which is now being built inside the West Bank, can stop thieves and people looking for work in Israel, but not determined fighters who will always find ways to cross it, whether from below or above.

The "kidnapped" soldier served as a pretext for an operation which must have been prepared a long time ago. The Israeli and international public has been told that the aim is to set him free, but in practice it has put his life in greater jeopardy. If the soldiers come near to where he is hidden, he could be killed in the cross-fire - as happened some years ago to the soldier Nakhshon Waksman, who was captured by Hamas. He was killed in the exchange of fire between the soldiers and the Palestinians. Waksman would probably be alive today, if there had been an exchange of prisoners instead.

The connection between the "kidnapped soldier" and the operation exists only in the realm of propaganda. The same goes for the second pretext: that the aim is to put an end to the launching of Qassam rockets at the town of Sderot.

True, this is indeed an intolerable situation. The Qassam, a simple and inexpensive weapon, causes more panic than real damage, like the German V-rockets fired on London in World War II. It terrorizes the population, and that is its aim. Its purpose is to break the devastating blockade that the Israeli government has been maintaining against the Gaza strip since the "disengagement". Until now, the army has not come up with a means to put a stop to the rockets.

But the Qassams, too, are not the real cause of the "Summer Rains" operation. Its character shows that it has a much wider aim: to destroy the elected Palestinian government (Israeli propaganda's "Hamas Government") and bring the Palestinian population to its knees. This is supposed to make it possible for the Israeli government to carry out the "Convergence" plan, annexing major parts of the West Bank to Israel and preventing the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.

A clear aim, which the operation is designed to attain by simple means: breaking the Palestinian population by the liquidation of its leadership, destruction of its infrastructure and cutting off of food supplies, medicines, electricity, water and sanitary services - not to mention employment. The message to the Palestinians: if you want to put an end to your suffering, remove the government you have elected.

CAN THIS succeed? Exactly like the the success of the British operation. "Agatha" achieved the very opposite.

Like all the failures of our army over the years, from the battle of Karameh in 1968, through the Egyptian crossing of the canal at the beginning of the Yom Kippur war, to the two intifadas, the reason lies with the abysmal contempt that the army commanders hold for the Arabs in general and the Palestinians in particular. The Shin Bet meets the Palestinians in the form of interrogated prisoners, who are ready to say anything at all under torture, and the despicable collaborators, who are ready to sell their cousins for drugs or money. The occupation commanders cannot imagine that the Palestinians could react like any other people, even - God forbid! - as we did in a similar situation. What, these pitiful Arabs are like us?

True, the British never behaved towards us as we do now towards the Palestinians. But on the other hand, the Palestinians' ability to suffer oppression is much greater than ours. It is based on the family structure that makes for much more effective mutual help, and on the experience of living for years in dire straits.

On "Black Saturday"' the Jewish community stood together behind its besieged leadership. The opposition from right and left rallied behind Ben-Gurion (who was abroad) and Sharett (imprisoned in Latrun). Experience shows that every people behaves like this when a foreign enemy attacks its leadership. Hamas is almost certain to emerge much strengthened from this test. The arrests prove to the Palestinian public that its is a fighting, loyal leadership, not corrupted by the amenities of power - contrary to their predecessors, some of whom were tainted by corruption.

The pretext for the operation - the release of the captured soldier - will only harden the attitude of the Palestinians. No issue is more important for them than the release of Palestinian prisoners - a matter that directly concerns 10 thousand Palestinian extended families, in every town, quarter and village. These families are prepared to suffer anything to secure their release.

THE SECOND victim of the operation is the "Convergence Plan", which has become ridiculous. In the eyes of the ordinary Israeli, it looks like this: We have left Gaza, and now we are returning. We dismantled the settlements there, and got the Qassams on Sderot in return. Sharon has failed, so Olmert will fail doubly.

That is true, but not for the obvious reasons. The withdrawal from Gaza has not brought security, because it was carried out without any dialogue or agreement with the Palestinians.

It has not brought peace nearer, because it was coupled with an open intention to annex large parts of the West Bank. And, no less importantly, we did indeed leave the Gaza Strip entirely, but have blockaded it and cut it off from the world. All this is even more true for the "convergence" of Olmert.

The "Summer Rains" may have washed it off the map.