A PowerPoint Presentation by Justus Reid Weiner delivered to members of the Norwegian Parliament, students at Harvard Law School and Yale College. This PowerPoint is based on a Briefing Paper prepared with Professor Abraham Bell. The authors wish to express their appreciation to Avi Sutton, Julie Feinberg, Betty Igdalski Lawler, Benjamin Fisher, and Monica Kugelmass for their assistance.
INTERNATIONAL LAW AND THE FIGHTING IN GAZA Justus Reid Weiner
Accusations based on international law have again been on the upsurge since the outbreak of Israel’s war against Hamas.
The two dominant principles in the law of war are the rules of distinction and proportionality . The rule of distinction requires combatants to aim all their attacks at legitimate targets. Attacks deliberately aimed at civilians are war crimes. A corollary of the rule of distinction is a ban on the use of weapons that are incapable of being properly aimed. The rockets used by the Palestinian attackers cannot be aimed at specific targets and are launched at urban areas. This means that the very use of these weapons violates international law.
Each one of the 6,000 rocket and mortar attacks by Palestinian terrorists on civilian targets in Israeli towns is a war crime. Both the terror squads carrying out the attacks, as well as their commanders, bear criminal responsibility . Under the rules of command responsibility, senior Hamas leaders such as Khaled Mashal , who ordered a continuation of the rocket attacks, are among the parties guilty of war crimes.
A consortium of Palestinian terrorist groups have held Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit incommunicado and out of reach of the International Committee of the Red Cross since 2006. This is a clear violation of international law concerning prisoners of war.
The Palestinian attacks must be seen as terrorist attacks under the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings , which makes it a crime to bomb public places (such as city streets) with the intent to kill civilians. Under this Convention, the Palestinian attackers are considered international terrorists and Israel is required to assume criminal jurisdiction over them.
UN Security Council Resolution 1566 requires states to deny safe haven to “any person who supports, facilitates, participates or attempts to participate in the financing, planning, preparation or commission of terrorist acts or provides safe havens.” Thus, all Palestinian governing authorities in Gaza, whether directly involved in terror attacks or not, are terrorists under international law , by virtue of their willing provision of safe haven for terrorists.
In carrying out their attacks on Israeli Jews as part of a larger aim to kill Jews, as demonstrated by the Hamas Covenant, many of the Palestinian terrorists are also violating the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide.
Every Hamas rocket attack against Israeli civilians is an armed attack against Israel under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, which authorizes member nations to respond militarily with force to armed attacks against it
2. Hamas attacks from civilian areas and infrastructure including mosques, homes, and hospitals. As to proportionality , it is difficult to apply it intelligently. If Hamas missiles hit three Israeli hospitals and two nursery schools, should Israel respond precisely in kind?
3. Misuse and abuse of humanitarian symbols for purposes of launching attacks is called the perfidy principle , that includes using ambulances to transport weapons
4. Hamas Covenant calling for the destruction of Israel – Incitement to Genocide prohibited by a Geneva Convention
EXAMPLES OF ISRAEL’S HUMANITARIAN AID TO GAZA DURING THE WAR 1,365 truckloads of humanitarian aid that have been delivered through Israeli crossings into Gaza since the beginning of Operation Cast Lead, including basic food commodities, medication, medical supplies, blood units and donations by various governments. 440,000 gallons (1.7 liters) of fuel conveyed through Israel's Nahal Oz fuel terminal and Kerem Shalom goods crossing. 980,000 leaflets disseminated by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to Gaza civilians instructing them to stay away from terrorists and weapons storage sites . 30,000+ telephone calls made to Gaza residents warning them of impending air-strikes. 33,580 tons of aid transported into Gaza at the request of international organizations, the Palestinian Authority and various governments since the beginning of Operation Cast Lead. The World Food Program informed Israel more than two weeks ago that it would cease shipment of food to Gaza because warehouses were at full capacity .
HAMAS ROCKET AND MORTAR ATTACKS: APRIL 2001- JANUARY 2009 10,000+ rockets and mortars fired from Gaza since 2001 . 3,200+ rockets and mortars fired from Gaza in 2008 alone . 6,500+ rockets and mortars fired from Gaza since Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005 . 538+ rockets and mortars fired from Gaza into Israeli territory during the ceasefire from June 19 to Dec. 19, 2008. 796 rockets and mortars fired from Gaza into Israel since Dec. 27 2008, when Operation Cast Lead began, and until Jan. 17 when Israel announced a ceasefire. 28 deaths caused by rockets and mortars fired from Gaza into Israel since 2001 . The dead include Israelis, Palestinians and foreign workers.. 294 Israelis injured by rocket and mortar fire since Dec. 27 2008. 1,000+ Israelis injured from rockets and mortars fired from Gaza since 2001 , including Israelis, Palestinians and foreign workers.
HAMAS ROCKET AND MORTAR ATTACKS: APRIL 2001- JANUARY 2009 70+ Fatah members murdered by Hama s forces since Dec. 27 2008. 20,000 Hamas terrorists Israel targeted as part of its defensive operation. 1,000,000 Israeli civilians within range of Hamas rockets 15 seconds Israelis living in Sderot have to get to a bomb shelter once a warning siren has sounded. 8 years Israel has endured rockets and mortar fire from Gaza. 9+ mosques in Gaza used as weapons , ammunitions and explosives depots that were struck by the Israel Defense Forces during the operation in Gaza., often causing secondary explosions.
Egyptian Foreign Minister Abu al-Ghait criticized Hamas at a press conference broadcast by Egyptian television ( December 27, at 1300 hours). Al-Ghait said that Egypt had repeatedly warned Hamas that it would have to bear responsibility, and could not blame others. He angrily noted that Hamas had fired 60 rockets in an attempt to sabotage Egyptian efforts to reach a ceasefire. WHO IS AT FAULT: APPORTIONING THE BLAME
During the war, Osama Bin Laden released a new audio tape urging young Muslims to “carry out the duty of jihad against the Zionist-Crusader alliance and against its agents in the region [i.e., pro-Western Arab regimes]…”
POLITICAL LEADER OF HAMAS, KHALED MASHAAL, MEETS AHMADINEJAD THE HAMAS DELEGATION WITH IRANIAN LEADER ALI KHAMENEI
KHALED MASHAAL (LEFT) AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEHRAN
IRANIAN-MADE WEAPON SUPPLIED TO HAMAS ROCKET PROPELLED GRENADE (RPG) BEARING EMBLEM OF THE IRANIAN ARMY
CONTRARY TO WIDESPREAD ALLEGATIONS, ISRAEL WAS NO LONGER OCCUPYING GAZA; HAVING UNILATERALLY WITHDRAWN (AT A HIGH PRICE) IN AUGUST 2005 100% percentage of the Gaza Strip evacuated and handed over to the Palestinians. 300 square miles of the West Bank evacuated. 21 Israeli settlements uprooted in the Gaza Strip. 4 Israeli settlements uprooted in the West Bank. 9,000 approximate number of Israelis , including 1,700 families, who lived in Gaza and the northern West Bank . All of them were moved out as part of the withdrawal. 38 synagogues dismantled in the Gaza Strip. 42 daycare centers that were closed in the Gaza Strip. 36 kindergartens that were closed in the Gaza Strip. 45,000 Israeli soldiers and policemen who participated in the Gaza withdrawal .
CONTRARY TO WIDESPREAD ALLEGATIONS, ISRAEL WAS NO LONGER OCCUPYING GAZA HAVING UNILATERALLY WITHDRAWN (AT A HIGH PRICE) IN AUGUST 2005 (CONT.) $1.7 US billion the approximate cost to the Israeli government for the withdrawal. 10,000 people who were employed in agriculture and related industries in Gush Katif, including 5,000 Palestinians lost their jobs . 3.5 million square meters of greenhouses abandoned in Gaza. 70 percentage of Israel's organic produce grown in Gaza – another economic resource forfeited in the evacuation. $870 US million approximate cost for Israel to facilitate the resettlement of former West Bank and Gaza residents elsewhere in the country. $500 US million amount of money Israel's security establishment spent to relocate Israel Defense Forces bases outside the Gaza Strip and build new border crossing facilities. 1.2 US million Arabs who remained full and legal citizens of Israel . All Israeli citizens – Christians, Muslims, and Jews – have freedom of speech, religion, press, and the right to vote. 1 Israeli remaining in Gaza. The kidnapped Staff Sgt. Gilad Shalit
Reem Riyashi (1982 – 2004) was a Palestinian mother of two from Gaza City who killed herself and four Israelis at the Erez crossing on January 14, 2004. Her suicide bombing was jointly claimed by Hamas and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (the militant faction of Fatah). When she reached the metal detector at the Erez checkpoint , Riyashi pretended to be crippled and claimed to have metal plates in her leg which would sound the alarm. Riyashi asked to have a body search instead. After being taken to an area where a group of soldiers and policemen were checking bags, she was told to wait for a woman to come and search her in a cubicle. It was then that she detonated the explosive device. Seven Israelis and four Palestinians were injured. THEIR MOTHER: REEM RIYASHI
TO THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE Your life is being harmed by irresponsible elements who exploit you by firing missiles from in between your houses at the Israeli settlements. These missiles backfire on you causing only destruction and loss of your source of living without leaving you any road to hope. Be aware !!! that firing missiles from your area will compel the Israeli Defense Forces to act in your area and to hit missile-launching elements in any place they act from. Get rid of terror which leads you to the bottom. Follow the road of hope. Do not allow the terrorists to come close to your area. WARNING LEAFLETS
“ Human Shield” – The deliberate use of civilians and public infrastructure to protect Hamas military assets from IDF strikes.
The use of civilians as “Human Shields,” violates international laws of warfare and is a complete disregard for human life . Hamas employs this illegal and terrorist tactic for defensive and offensive purposes in the Gaza Strip.
ROCKETS FIRED IN TO ISRAEL FROM DENSELY POPULATED RESIDENTIAL AREA OF BEIT LAHIYA CIVILIANS GATHERED ON TARGETED ROOFTOP TO SERVE AS “HUMAN SHIELDS” AND PREVENT IDF STRIKE CIVILIANS AS “HUMAN SHIELDS”
According to Hamas’ English website, Nizar Rayyan , a senior Hamas military commander, first used “Human Shields” in the Gaza Strip two years ago. Gazan residents were round up and strategically placed on the rooftops of buildings containing terrorists that feared being targeted by Israel Air Force strikes. The use of “Human Shields” became the official Hamas method of operation . Nizar Rayyan and two of his four wives were killed in an IAF strike during Operation Cast Lead after refusing to leave his house despite warnings that an attack was imminent. NIZAR RAYYAN LAUDED THE USE OF “HUMAN SHIELDS” AS THE HAMAS METHOD OF OPERATION
Shifa Hospital serves as a hiding place for Hamas militants
Central command of Hamas’ northern police force was relocated to Kam’el Adwuan Hospital
5 GRAD ROCKETS LAUNCHED NEARBY MOSQUE
Hamas militants have relocated several of their military command stations to mosques
Mortars and rockets are launched nearby mosques
This often results in secondary explosions if Israeli attacks
HAMAS OPERATIONS IN PUBLIC AREAS II
Rockets Launched from Elementary Schools ROCKETS FIRED FROM UNWRA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL IN BEIT HANOUN ROCKETS FIRED FROM ELEMENTARY SCHOOLYARD HAMAS OPERATIONS IN PUBLIC AREAS III
2 1 3 Rockets Manufactured inside Residence in Northern Gaza Strip Tunnel Opening in Floor of Residence HAMAS OPERATIONS IN CIVILIAN RESIDENCES
Hamas Militant Gunfire from U.N. Ambulance HAMAS OPERATIONS IN HUMANITARIAN AID VEHICLES
TRANSLATION: THE SHAHEED COMMANDER MUHAMMAD SALAMAH HALLAS, SENIOR MEMBER OF " ARIEAH SHEJERIA” SPECIAL FORCES UNIT Aslam Shahuuan, Ministry of Interior Spokesman for Hamas (1/5/09): “Men in uniform have been declared targets for air strikes. As a result, while outside in the terrain, uniforms are to be discarded and civilian clothes are to be worn.” Hamas Militant in Civilian Clothing Launching Rocket from Residential Area HAMAS OPERATIONS IN CIVILIAN CLOTHING
Senior Hamas militants use women and children as “Human Shields”.
Their purpose is to protect Hamas military structures that are potential targets for IDF strikes. If they refuse, they are subject to physical harm, even death.
ENTRENCHED GUNMAN FIRING SURROUNDED BY CHILDREN ROCKET LAUNCHED IN SITE SURROUNDED BY A GROUP OF CHILDREN WOMEN AND CHILDREN AS “HUMAN SHIELDS”
“ HUMAN SHIELDS” AS OFFICIAL HAMAS POLICY Fahhi Hammed – Hamas spokesman, explaining the policy of Hamas to deliberately use the Palestinian population as “Human Shields” in the fight against Israel. (March 2008)
HAMAS ADMITS TO DESIRING DEATH WHEREAS ISRAELIS SEEK TO PRESERVE LIFE * *Click on title above
ROCKETS FIRED AT ISRAEL FROM DENSELY-POPULATED AREAS
HAMAS OPERATIVE SHOULDERING A HOME-MADE AL-YASSIN ANTI TANK MISSILE LAUNCHER
ROCKET LAUNCHING POSITION NEAR A MOSQUE IN THE SHA'ATI REFUGEE CAMP IN THE NORTHERN GAZA STRIP Mosque launching pad 18 meters
IED AND ROCKET LAUNCHING POSITION NEAR MOSQUE IN GAZA CITY Mosque launching pad IED adjacent to electrical wire 14 meters
IED DETONATION POINT SITUATED IN A MOSQUE ON THE ROAD SOUTH TO KHAN YANIS IN THE GAZA STRIP Mosque IED on road IED cable connected to Mosque
FORTIFIED POSITION ON ROOF OF HOUSE IN THE HEART OF A CIVILIAN NEIGHBORHOOD IN BEIT LAHIYA Nawaf Feisal Attar , a Hamas terrorist operative from Al-Atatra in the northern Gaza Strip , was detained on January 11, 2009 . During interrogation he admitted that Hamas regularly launched rockets from near schools. As examples he gave the Sakhnin school in the Abu Halima neighborhood and another in the Al-Mal neighborhood, saying that rockets were fired from both. He said that was because Hamas operatives knew Israeli aircraft would not attack a school. civilian home fortified position
GRAD ROCKETS LOADED ON TO TRUCK * *Click on title above
Identification of a launcher that was fired during a ceasefire
THE ISRAELI AIR FORCE DID NOT ATTACK THE LAUNCHER BECAUSE OF ITS PROXIMITY TO SCHOOL BUILDINGS . Identifying a launching site between two schools school school
LEFT TO RIGHT: A LARGE BOOBY-TRAPPED MANNEQUIN, A CAMOUFLAGED IED, AND A DETONATOR
Unlike the 2006 War in Lebanon the high command was careful to follow its detailed contingency plans , step by step.
No Israeli aircraft was shot down although they made more than 1,000 sorties -- a very impressive record.
They hit their targets with a high percentage of accuracy . Compared to dozens of other wars, the casualty total in the Gaza War was astonishingly low .
Israel, like every military in the world, has used phosphorous to mark targets. Although dangerous, it is absolutely legal . The International Committee of the Red Cross has confirmed that Israel didn’t improperly use phosphorus in Gaza.
Although the full statistics are yet to be released the evidence suggests that, with the exception of some friendly fire deaths, the ground forces ably completed their missions according to the planned stages.
As is customary for the IDF, the post-war review of military operations will determine whether, or to what degree, avoidable collateral damage occurred.
Hamas had thousands of short range Kassam ground to ground rockets. The Katyusha (Grad) rockets are a 122 mm Russian-design - although they are made in many countries including Iran and China: they have a range of 10-40 KM ; the Katyushas fired from Gaza landed as far as Beersheva, Israel’s fourth largest city.
Hamas succeeded in making civilian life difficult in Southern Israel. Thousands of rockets hit Israel during the war -- which was a success for Hamas. They forced about 1,000,000 Israelis to put their normal lives in standstill for almost a month, frequently running to the nearest bomb shelter with only seconds to spare when the alert siren sounded.
However, life for Israeli civilians would have been much worse if Israel did not have sirens and bomb shelters which were constructed over the decades in response to the various threats.
Imagine how this war might have ended differently if Iran already had a nuclear umbrella to protect Hamas .
I visited some civilians who were living in the shelters and took some photos:
The only way to win a war against terrorists and guerilla fighters is to have control of the ground .
Israel was successful when it entered Gaza on the ground; every mission that was assigned was fulfilled .
Hamas had to move its rocket launchers and it became easier to spot and destroy them before or immediately after they were launched.
A big issue overriding all these is whether Israel has regained “deterrence.” To have deterrence you need three things:
1) a military capability, and
2) a willingness to use your military capability, and
3) the enemy must believe that you have the will to use your capability .
For years now Hamas has concluded that Israel did not have the willingness to use its military capability ; that it was soft and couldn’t or wouldn’t accept casualties and the political risks of armed conflict.
In the year 2000, Israel withdrew from Lebanon unilaterally. Since then it absorbed repeated cross-border shelling and raids by Hizbullah .
In 2005 Israel withdrew unilaterally from Gaza ; giving up the homes of some 9,000 civilians and even afterwards did very little in response to repeated Palestinian raids (including a soldier kidnapped ) and thousands of rockets and mortars .
The leadership of the new Israeli political party Kadima offered further withdrawals .
That Israel was restrained in response to the bellicose threats of Ahmadinejad of Iran and young Bashar Assad of Syria; and Khaled Mashal .
It began to look as if Israel had no red lines ; that fatigue had set in.
Now every state and terrorist group in the region is on notice that Israel does have some red lines ; and if Iran, Syria or the Palestinians cross these red lines there will be consequences .
Lets look at the even wider picture -- from the perspective of fighting terrorism around the world this war was very important .
This is because it reveals the connection between Hamas and Iran and Syria -- terrorist groups and sovereign states.
Hamas received weapons and training from Iran and Syria which invested heavily in Hamas during the past 10 years.
Many people don’t want to believe that an international web of terrorism exists.
Could we Israelis convince the Americans of this before 9/11? Could we convince Egypt of this before the bombings in Sinai? Could we convince the Jordanians before the bombings in Amman? Nor could we have convinced India before the bombings in Mumbai.
Hamas' attempt to create a narrative of victory is clearly drawn from Hezbollah's success in the Second Lebanon War, despite the considerable difference between the Lebanon War and the Gaza War.
According to the Qassam Brigades spokesman Abu Obeida, 48 of its operatives were killed in the fighting against the IDF (the actual number of operatives from Hamas and the other terrorist organizations killed during the fighting amounts to hundreds ). Additionally, it was claimed that more than 80 IDF soldiers were killed, including 49 soldiers killed in direct clashes with the terrorists. In reality, ten soldiers were killed during the operation, including four who died as a result of friendly fire .
Abu Obeida described events that did not actually take place : hitting four helicopters, destroying 47 tanks , bulldozers, and APCs, taking two IDF soldiers prisoner , and dozens of actions behind enemy lines, etc.
January 20, 2009). THOUSANDS OF GAZANS MARCH TO EXPRESS THEIR JOY AT THE “VICTORY OF THE RESISTANCE” (AL-AQSA TV)
On January 29, 2009 Hamas arranged “victory parades” throughout the Gaza Strip, attended by thousands of civilians. Were it Israel’s intent to kill civilians , this would have been the ideal opportunity .
The marchers were told that the “resistance” had won the war and that Israel had advanced by killing women and children and destroying houses “after failing to fight the resistance.”
Ismail Radwan, who gave a speech to the participants of one of the parades , boasted of the victory over the mighty Israeli army and asked his audience, “Did the Hamas leadership fall? Did the Hamas movement fall ? Did Israel stop the rocket fire?” Every time the crowd shouted “No!”
It will take Hamas about 2 years or longer to recruit and train replacements for their fighters who were killed. They know the truth about how serious a blow they suffered.
“ VICTORY” (CONT.)
HUMANITARIAN AID DELIVERED BY ISRAEL TO THE GAZA STRIP
Since the beginning of Operation Cast Lead through February 25, 2009, approximately 161,400 tons of humanitarian aid crossed into the Gaza Strip. In addition, more than 13,200,000 liters of fuel were delivered through the Nahal Oz fuel terminal and the Kerem Shalom crossing.
For example , on January 19 , 2009, the delivery of humanitarian aid continued through the crossings from Israel into the Gaza Strip:
195 trucks carrying 5,000 tons of aid from international agencies and donations
from Jordan and Egypt were delivered through the Kerem Shalom and Karni crossings.
About 540,000 liters of diesel fuel and 200 tons of cooking gas were delivered
through the Nahal Oz fuel terminal.
Ten ambulances from Judea and Samaria went into the Gaza Strip in coordination
with the Red Cross.
33 Palestinians left the Gaza Strip through the Erez crossing for medical treatment in Israel.
TRUCKS WITH HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE CROSS INTO THE GAZA STRIP
According to a Fatah supporter, “The aid goes into the Hamas storehouses and they sell it to the poor civilians…who are forced to wear green berets [signifying affiliation with Hamas] to be able to buy. If you don't wear a green beret, you won't get anything to eat or drink in Gaza.”
The residents who go to receive their money are forced to listen to political speeches made by Hamas activists, who boast that the Israeli “military machine” was defeated and that the Gaza Strip will be rebuilt by Hamas .
Hamas also prevented wounded Palestinians from reaching the Erez crossing for medical treatment in the field hospital set up there by Israel.
THE HUMANITARIAN CRISIS IN GAZA: IN PERSPECTIVE
The Palestinians are the largest per capita recipients of foreign aid worldwide . In addition, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy has pointed out that as of 2002, based upon contemporary prices, Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza had received “$161 per person per year compared to $68 per person annually under the four-year Marshall Plan, meaning the Palestinians have gotten more than twice as much aid for twice as long as Europe received under the Marshall Plan .”
In fact, classic indicators of the standard of living place Gaza in a reasonably strong position . Life expectancy in the Gaza Strip is 72 years , higher than Russia (66), India (69), Ukraine (68) and Glasgow East (in Scotland), where male life expectancy is 69 years. Similarly, Gaza has a much lower infant mortality rate (21 deaths/1,000 live births) than Angola (182), Iran (37), India (32), Egypt (28) and Brazil (27). Perhaps the most astonishing fact, in light of the sensationalist media coverage damning Gaza’s chances for a better future, is that literacy in Gaza stands at a staggering 92 percent , far higher than India (48), Egypt (59), and even wealthy Saudi Arabia (71).
THE HUMANITARIAN CRISIS IN GAZA: IN PERSPECTIVE (CONT.)
Likewise, contrary to common mythology that the Gaza Strip is “the most densely populated territory in the world,” Gaza is less densely populated than an array of other locales around the world , including a number of economic success stories. According to the Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2004-2005 , the population per square mile in the Gaza Strip was 8,666, while Monaco had a population density of 41,608, Singapore, 17,751, Gibraltar, 11,990, Hong Kong, 17,833, and Macau had a population density nearly ten times that of the Gaza Strip (71,466) in 2003.
Alan Johnston BBC Kidnapped 03/12/2007 OLAF WIIG AND STEVE CENTANNI FOX NEWS KIDNAPPED 08/14/2006 JOURNALISTS KIDNAPPED IN GAZA:
On January 8, 2009 the United Nations approved Security Council Resolution 1860 which called for an “ immediate and durable ceasefire .”
On January 21 , 2009 Israel Defense Minister Ehud Barak declared that the IDF completed its withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and ended its military operation against Hamas.
6 European leaders met with Prime Minister Olmert to show their commitment to prevent Hamas from smuggling arms into Gaza . This included British PM Gordon Brown, French President Nicolas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi, Spanish PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and Czech PM Mirek Topolanek.
Would any other democracy, anywhere in the world, have accepted even one rocket strike on its sovereign territory?
The short amount of time which has passed since the end of Operation Cast Lead has illustrated only too well how shaky the ceasefire in the Gaza Strip is.
Despite Hamas's agreement in principle, and despite the fact that the IDF forces withdrew from the Gaza Strip, the terrorist organization does not implement the ceasefire.
Almost every day , they carry out sporadic rocket and mortar shell fire , or terrorist attacks directed against IDF forces near the border security fence (shooting with light arms, detonating IEDs).
The most serious violation occurred on January 27 , when an IED blew up north of Kissufim in the central Gaza Strip, killing one IDF soldier and wounding three others. No casualties were incurred in the other attacks.
Israel continues delivering humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip through its border crossings, despite the daily violations of the ceasefire. During the past week an average of 200 trucks entered the Gaza Strip every day through the Kerem Shalom and Karni crossings, and fuel continued flowing into the Gaza Strip through the Nahal Oz fuel terminal.
CEASEFIRE VIOLATIONS Number Date Event Organization Claiming Responsibility Israel's Response Notes 1 Jan. 20 Terrorists opened fire at an IDF force south of the Kissufim crossing. There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 2 Jan. 20 Terrorists shot at an IDF force near the border security fence in the central Gaza Strip. The IDF force returned fire. There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 3 Jan. 20 Eleven mortar shells were fired at IDF forces and into Israeli territory. There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 4 Jan. 25 A terrorist squad tried to carry out a rocket attack against . One rocket was fired and fell inside the Gaza Strip. PFLP The Palestinian media reported that Hamas prevented the rocket fire. 5 Jan. 27 An IED was detonated to attack an IDF patrol north of Kissufim. A network linked to the global jihad. The IAF struck a motorcyclist in the Khan Yunis area and weapons smuggling tunnels in Rafah. A soldier was killed and three were wounded, one of them critically, two sustaining minor injuries. 6 Jan. 28 A rocket fell in Israeli territory near the southern Gaza Strip. Fatah and the PIJ The IAF attacked a facility for weapons manufacture in Rafah. There were no casualties and no property damage was reported.
7 Jan. 29 A rocket fell in an open area near the city of . There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 8 Jan. 31 A rocket fell south of the city of . There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 9 Feb. 1 Three rockets were fired at western towns and villages. There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 10 Feb. 1 Armed Palestinians shot at an IDF force in the Kissufim area in the western . There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 11 Feb. 1 Four mortar shells fell in the western . There were no casualties and no property damage was reported. 12 Feb. 1 At 1530 hours five mortar shells were fired at towns and villages in the western . Two IDF soldiers sustained minor shrapnel injuries. 13 Feb. 3 A rocket fell between two buildings in the city of . Several vehicles were damaged.
ACTIVITY IN THE SMUGGLING TUNNELS UNDER THE EGYPT-GAZA BORDER Hamas will work as fast as it can to restore the tunnels damaged or destroyed during Operation Cast Lead. The tunnels play an extremely important role in the restoration of Hamas military infrastructure , since they make it possible for large quantities of weapons to flow regularly. into
Israel has learned from this War; actually we have relearned what we forgot in recent years -- that we can’t let groups like Hamas build up their capabilities . We may have to act in preemptive self defense - anticipatory self-defense is not a curse word.
The War has implications for Iran too; from a military standpoint it was a costly failure ; but they succeeded in drawing attention away from their problems regarding sanctions at the U.N. Sec. Council regarding their rogue nuclear weapons program .
Significantly Iran and Syria did almost nothing during the war to help their client Hamas; people around the Middle East will remember that -- they looked weak and undependable ; Iran "fought" to the last Hamas fighter; Syria too did almost nothing other than engage in verbal threats -- and they are now aware of Israel’s red lines .