Daily Israel Report

Seven Kassam Rockets; Sderot Woman to Hospital

Sderot residents protested this morning, after Kassam rockets smashed into a child's bedroom and near a school this morning. "How long can we rely on miracles?" they ask.
By Hillel Fendel
First Publish: 6/6/2006, 4:09 PM / Last Update: 6/6/2006, 10:46 AM

Sderot municipal spokesman Yosef Cohen told Arutz-7's Kobi Finkler, "The rockets today were especially powerful, and their blast was heard clearly throughout the city. Children are frightened, people are panicking, and the IDF has no answer."

A Kassam rocket damaged a house in Sderot
The rocket that hit the house lightly injured a woman, who was treated by emergency forces on the spot and was then taken to Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon. The second Kassam, near the school, damaged several parked cars, and several people were treated on the scene for shock.

Several other rockets, for a total of seven today, landed harmlessly in the western Negev.
Upset mothers react to the most recent Kassam rocket attack in Sderot outside the house of the defense minister

Town residents, infuriated by the inaction of the military and governmental authorities, held signs reading, "We have no children to spare" and "Sderot = Gaza's Target Practice; Tel Aviv = The REAL Target; Why wait?"

Recent Kassams towards Sderot damaged two vehicles in a parking lot (Saturday), smashed into a home neighboring that of Defense Minister Amir Peretz (May 31), and blasted into the roof of a classroom as the students were outside waiting to get in (May 21). The IDF has responded with artillery fire towards Gaza, but mainly towards the open areas from which the rockets are fired.

One of the protesting Sderot residents later spoke with IsraelNationalRadio's Yishai Fleisher about the situation in her town. Click here to hear the interview, or here to download it.
"Kassams Kill!" Residents protest these daily Kassam attacks

Peretz has said that Israel would respond sharply and would even hurt the civilian population - but at this week's Cabinet meeting, he and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert refused to entertain Public Security Minister Avi Dichter's recommendation to "turn Beit Hanoun into a ghost town."

Dichter said at the time that the IDF should enter Gaza with massive ground forces, but Olmert and Peretz negated the idea.

Cabinet Minister Rafi Eitan (Pensioners Party), a former intelligence officer who recruited and was the handler of Jonathan Pollard and is now a member of the security mini-cabinet, discussed various aspects of this issue with Arutz-7's Yigal Shok.

"Kassams will not stop in the next 5-50 years," Eitan said, "unless we stop them with force." However, he said, international considerations restrain this force. He also said that technological means are available and effective, but they have not yet been discussed in the government, as "this is still a young government." He ruled out a military ground offensive in Gaza because "Kassams are not that efficient and have not cost any lives - whereas a ground entry into Gaza will cost lives." Finally, he said that in the end, Dichter's advice might be the right idea.
One resident was simple and to the point : "Stop the Kassam"

Prof. Moshe Sharon, of Tel Aviv University's Asian Studies Institute, told Arutz-7's Hebrew newsmagazine that the only explanation for Olmert's and Peretz's decision is political. "There is no military logic to the conception that rejects large-scale action against the Kassams," Sharon said, "unless the political calculation is taken into account. The ministers sense that the army's re-entry into Gaza would be an admission that the Disengagement plan they supported, and whose continuation they wish to effect in Judea and Samaria, was a failure."
Even the youngest of children attended this protest