Over the Sabbath weekend, three rockets were fired towards Sderot and the Negev, causing extensive damage to a bank and apartment building. One person was lightly hurt by shrapnel, and five were treated for shock.
Four weeks ago, Abbas informed Olmert that all the Palestinian terrorist factions had agreed to stop all hostile Gaza-based activities against Israel, including tunnel-digging, suicide bombers, and of course Kassam rockets. Israel, in turn, removed its forces from Gaza and has not initiated anti-terror actions. This morning's 51st Arab rocket since then brings the daily average to nearly two a day.
Attacking Gov't's Restraint
Alon Shuster, head of the Shaar HaNegev Regional Council, sharply attacked the government's inaction. "The escalation is expected any minute, yet the government is detached from reality and is leaving thousands of residents without protection," he said.
Even MK Danny Yatom, a former head of the Mossad intelligence agency and a candidate to head the Labor Party, has now called for an end to government restraint. Speaking to Voice of Israel Radio this morning, he said that Israel must respond sharply so that the next time there is a ceasefire, the terrorists will not be so quick to break it.
Attacking Olmert's Gift-Giving
Residents in Sderot reacted with outrage to Olmert's gift last night of $100 million in tax revenues to Abu Mazen. "It would be more appropriate for the Prime Minister to rebuild trust with the residents of Sderot and the Negev than to give presents to terrorists in Gaza," said Alon Davidi, the head of the local Sderot struggle committee, told the NRG website.
Others attacked Olmert for giving gifts to the PA while it still holds an Israeli soldier in captivity. MK Aryeh Eldad says Olmert is collaborating with the enemy: "Olmert gave $100 million to the Palestinian Authority while the Palestinian government holds in its territory a kidnapped Israeli soldier and from where rockets are continuously fired at Israel. He is thus in violation of the law banning the funding of terrorism, and is collaborating with Israel's enemies."