Listen to Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin’s latest analysis of the situation:
IDF Summary of Activity in Gaza
Over the course of the day, IAF aircraft continued to target dozens of terror sites throughout the Gaza Strip, including terror tunnels, rocket launching sites and several squads that were involved in launching rockets at Israel.
A short while ago in a joint IDF-ISA activity, a senior Hamas operative in charge of the terror organization's smuggling operations, and who was actively involved in its armament build-up was targeted in the southern Gaza Strip. Additionally, this morning, the senior member of Hamas' Air Defense Unit, Mohammed Kaleb, was targeted in the southern Gaza Strip.
In addition, a major Hamas base in the southern Gaza Strip was targeted.
Hamas, that controls the Gaza Strip, has turned it into a front line base for Iran, carrying out terror attacks and firing rockets at Israeli citizens, forcing them to live in unbearable circumstances.
Since the beginning of the operation more than 400 rockets have hit Israeli territory. Today, 5 civilians and 4 IDF soldiers were injured by rocket fire.
The "Iron Dome" Active Missile Defense System has intercepted a long-range rocket above the greater Tel- Aviv area, adding to more than 240 interceptions since the beginning of Operation Pillar of Defense.
The sites that were targeted have been positively identified by precise intelligence over the course of several months.
The IDF is determined to continue targeting terror activity sites that are used to carry out attacks against the citizens of Israel.
Overnight, the IDF targeted two Hamas operational communication sites that were identified by precise intelligence.
The first site was targeted at approximately 01:40 a.m. and was a part of Hamas' operational communications infrastructure, located inside a civilian building. As a result, and in order to minimize the damage to non involved persons, the IDF only targeted the communication devices which were located on the roof of the building, and not the operations room of Hamas that is located on one of the floors.
The second site was targeted at approximately 06:50 a.m. and was also part of Hamas' operational communications that was deliberately located on the roof of the building, in which several international media bureaus reside.
The IDF calls on international journalists and correspondents who operate in the Gaza Strip carrying out their duties, to stay clear of Hamas' bases and facilities- which serve them in their activity against the citizens of Israel.
11:35 a.m.: Hamas and terror organizations in the Gaza Strip have continued to launch an endless stream rockets towards Israel. However, not all the rockets launched reach Israeli airspace. Since the beginning of the operation, 98 rockets launched from the Gaza Strip have exploded within Gaza.
11:05 a.m.: Today, despite continued rocket fire over Israel, the Kerem Shalom crossing reopened to allow the transfer of humanitarian aid into gaza. 124 trucks of goods entered the Gaza Strip carrying medical supplies, food, milk, and gas.
10:40 a.m.: Confirmed, Iron Dome intercepted the rocket fired at Tel Aviv a few minutes ago.
10:35 a.m.: Moments ago, rocket alarms sounded in Tel Aviv, details forthcoming.
7:08 a.m.: Overnight, IAF aircraft targeted dozens of underground rocket launchers, causing severe damage to the rocket launching capabilities of Hamas and other terror organizations.
A short while ago, two sites in the northern Gaza Strip were targeted: Saraya – a Hamas primary training base and command center – and a communications antenna used by Hamas to carry out terror activity against the State of Israel. A number of training bases owned by Hamas were also targeted throughout the Gaza Strip. Additionally, Israeli Navy soldiers targeted terror sites on the northern Gaza shoreline.
The sites that were targeted were positively identified by precise intelligence over the course of months.
Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, has turned it into a front line base for Iran, carrying out terror attacks and firing rockets at Israeli citizens, forcing them to live in unbearable circumstances. The IDF is determined to continue targeting terror activity sites that are used to carry out attacks against the citizens of Israel.
6:19 a.m.: Correction: Since Operation Pillar of Defense began on Wednesday (November 14), nearly 500 rockets fired from Gaza have landed in Israel.
In addition, the Iron Dome Active Defense System has intercepted 267 rockets. The IDF has targeted over 1,000 terror sites in the Gaza Strip during the operation.
3:10 a.m.: A short while ago, Israeli Navy forces targeted several Hamas terror activity sites in the Gaza Strip.
2:16 a.m.: A short while ago, the IDF targeted two smuggling tunnels belonging to terror groups in Gaza.
12:45 a.m.: Since the beginning of Operation Pillar of Defense, over 500 rockets fired from the Gaza Strip have struck Israel. In addition, the Iron Dome Active Missile Defense System has intercepted 257 rockets, preventing them from striking populated areas.
Since the operation began on Wednesday (October 14), the IDF has targeted approximately 950 terror sites in the Gaza Strip.
> Visit here for the IDF updated video gallery: http://www.idf.il/1283-17594-en/Dover.aspx
NEWS REPORTS OF NOTE
Jerusalem Post: Live Blog, Day 5 of Operation Pillar of Defense
Welcome to The Jerusalem Post's real-time coverage of Operation Pillar of Defense, the IDF operation to root out terror in Gaza and reestablish deterrence. The minute-to-minute coverage includes breaking updates from our reporters, photographers and experts on the scene, as well as informational briefings, updates on rocket and military attacks, defense establishment and official comments and world reactions.
> Read full blog here: http://www.jpost.com/Defense/Article.aspx?id=291794
Wall Street Journal: Arab Leaders Scramble to Contain Conflict
The Middle East's emerging political forces mobilized in Cairo and in Gaza on Saturday to press for an end to the escalating conflict between Hamas and Israel.
In Gaza, hostilities continued, with Israeli airstrikes pounding the coastal strip for a fourth straight day and Palestinian militants firing dozens of rockets at Israel, including another two aimed at Tel Aviv. The toll reached 40 Palestinians dead and 345 wounded, and three Israelis dead.
There were hints that the pace of combat operations could be slowing, perhaps as a result of the Cairo-led efforts to mediate a cease-fire. In Gaza, the ferocity and number of airstrikes seemed to dip. Hamas said government institutions in Gaza would resume regular work hours on Sunday, a surprising decision given that Israel has targeted some government offices in the past 24 hours.
It was unclear whether the lull was a sign that hostilities could be winding down, or merely a periodic operational pause. Israeli ground forces, including 16,000 reservists called up in the past 48 hours, remained massed on Gaza's borders awaiting orders from Israel's political leadership.
> Read full story here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323551004578125163379949642.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_LEFTTopStories
Washington Post: Israel strikes media buildings in Gaza, expanding its range of targets.
TEL AVIV — The Israeli military struck two buildings used by journalists in Gaza early Sunday during the fifth day of a campaign against militants in the Palestinian enclave. Hours later, artillery rounds landed in southern Israeli cities and the country’s missile defense system intercepted a powerful long-range rocket over Tel Aviv, the second such incident in as many days.
Sunday’s strikes in Gaza suggested Israel is continuing to expand its range of targets after hitting almost exclusively military sites during the first few days of the operation, dubbed Pillar of Defense. On Saturday, an Israeli bomb demolished the office of Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh. The crossfire dimmed hopes for a ceasefire as Arab leaders led by Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi were set to convene in Cairo on Sunday to discuss a negotiated end to the conflict.
> Read full story here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/as-hamas-rockets-fly-israel-moves-toward-ground-invasion-of-gaza-strip/2012/11/17/a90a66d4-307f-11e2-a30e-5ca76eeec857_story.html?hpid=z1
The New York Times: Arms with a Long Reach Help Hamas
TEL AVIV — When Israel assassinated the top Hamas military commander in Gaza on Wednesday, setting off the current round of fierce fighting, it was aiming not just at a Palestinian leader but at a supply line of rockets from Iran that have for the first time given Hamas the ability to strike as far as Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
> Read full story here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/18/world/middleeast/arms-with-long-reach-bolster-hamas.html?hp&_r=0
The Times of Israel: Israel special forces on the ground in Gaza seeking out hidden rocket sites, British paper claims
The Sunday Times also reports fears that Hamas might resort to chemical weapons, and offers details on how Israel targeted Hamas commander Jabari.
> Read full story here: http://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-special-forces-on-the-ground-in-gaza-seeking-out-hidden-rocket-sites-british-paper-claims/
Hamas Recycles Pictures of Syrian Dead; And claims them as Palestinian dead
Details here: http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/116907/hamas-recycles-pictures-of-syrian-dead
B'nai B'rith Statement
B’nai B’rith International stands in solidarity with Israel and supports the country’s right to defend itself.
> Read the full release
Israel Emergency Fund Opened
B’nai B’rith International has launched an Israel Emergency Fund in response to events in Israel and the Gaza Strip. Its goal is to raise funds to assist Israeli residents who are dealing with a barrage of rocket attacks from Hamas. Funds could also be used to help with the personal needs of Israel Defense Forces soldiers.
> Make a donation today.
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