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The Tools of Terror

By Michael Freund
11/16/2004, 12:00 AM

It’s Thursday, the week isn’t over yet, but there has sure been an upsurge of anti-Israel violence in Gaza over the past few days:

* On Sunday, Palestinian terrorists killed five Israeli soldiers and wounded six others when they detonated a booby-trapped underground tunnel near a military outpost in Gaza. Upon hearing of the outcome of the attack, Palestinians in Gaza city celebrated by holding a march.

* On Monday, Palestinian terrorists launched seven mortar shells at various Jewish communities in Gaza, placed a bomb near an army position on the border with Egypt, and fired anti-tank rockets at soldiers based near the Gaza community of Atzmona.

* On Tuesday, Palestinians in Gaza fired two Kassam rockets at the Israeli town of Netiv Ha’Asarah in the southern part of the country, as well as at the Gaza Jewish community of Ganei Tal, where a foreign worker was killed and two others injured in the attack.

* On Wednesday, Palestinian terrorists again fired Kassam rockets and mortar shells at Jewish communities in Gaza and Palestinian gunmen wounded five Israelis in a shooting attack on the road from Kissufim to Gush Katif.

* Already this morning, Palestinian snipers opened fire on Israeli soldiers near the community of Nvei Dekalim, and mortar shells were fired at the Jewish community of Nisanit.

Under normal circumstances, a country that found its soldiers and civilians under a barrage of this sorts would respond forcefully and overwhelmingly, both to root out the terrorists as well as deter them from carrying out additional attacks. But Israel’s government, it seems, is far from normal, and its response to this onslaught of Palestinian violence has been remarkably feeble.

Basically, all that Israel has done is to bombard a Palestinian munitions factory in Gaza this past Monday which was used to manufacture weapons and explosives.

But this, of course, raises the obvious question: if the government knew about the existence of this factory beforehand, then why wasn’t it bombed previously? Why did they wait until after Sunday’s terrorist attack to go after it?

From the time Israel first learned of the factory’s existence, each day that passed was another day on which more tools of terror could be created for use against us. By failing to eliminate it immediately, the government was putting other considerations ahead of its most fundamental responsibility: protecting the people of Israel.

Worse yet, we have all become so accustomed to the Palestinian violence, and to the government’s lack of response, that we don’t even realize just how dangerous this situation is. For unless and until the terrorists are made to pay for their actions, they will have little reason to stop pursuing their lethal agenda.

14n_fatah_entlead__200x1600 It is time for all of us to raise up our voices loud and clear, and demand that the government take immediate military action to uproot the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza once and for all. Instead of talking about withdrawal, Israel should be fighting against the terrorists. That, after all, is the only way to bring about their defeat.