Sderot Hit By 60 Rockets and Mortars
Most of the rockets fired from Gaza are made there and are able to reach Sderot in Israel. Two of the 60 fired Wednesday are the imported Katyusha rockets that can reach Ashkelon, which is 10 miles north of Gaza, which as been hit this year. Ashkelon is quite a large city and has the hospital that is used by both Israelis and Gazans. The rockets that hit Sderot fell in the yard of a house. They also hit the water park in Ashkelon, an Israeli factory at Nir Oz near the Gaza border, and hit a house outside the town of Netivot in the Western Negev, which was a rare occurance. Adults and children alike were treated for shock in the area.
It was reported at a meeting that Hamas terrorists had used the six month cease fire to improve their weapons and could now reach the outskirts of Beersheba and Ashdod, a port city. The government is still practicing the policy of restraint, but knows they cannot go on like this forever. They realize that a military invasion into Gaza would cost lives on both sides and would not guarantee an end to rocket fire.
Hamas is using the excuse for the attacks on "Israel's aggression in Gaza and the West Bank and to the embargo Israel has on Gaza. " I supposed that means they are complaining about opening the border crossings to allow trucks into Gaza. The border was sealed in November when the truce broke down. Israel was going to let 40 trucks into Gaza on Wednesday, but cancelled it because of the heavy rocket and mortar fire. Israel has closed the crossings only when they are attacked, which has been more than 3,00 rockets since the beginning of the year. When there has been a lull, they have allowed trucks to enter.
Report is that the attack started because Israel caught terrorists planting explosives along the border and killed three. The terrorists retaliated because they were caught in their terrorism.
Israel finally as reacted. They struck from the air and killed one terrorist who had just fired more mortars at Israel. Two others were wounded who were part of the group. One wounded was a Hamas TV cameraman.
Resource: The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/25/world/middleeast/25mideast.html?_r=1&partner=is