Hamas and allied terrorists attacked southern Israel with rockets and mortar shells at the rate of one every six minutes at dawn Sunday.
Islamic Jihad appeared to be behind most of the attacks over the past 48 hours, but Hamas has done nothing to stop the sudden offensive, one week after kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit was freed in exchange for 477 terrorists and security prisoners. An additional 550 are to be released in less than two months, and several political leaders also are demanding that they remain in prison because of the lethal missile attacks.
One person was killed, a baby was wounded, and dozens suffered minor injuries and shock. Several victims still are recovering in hospitals. Some school did not open their doors Sunday morning, but most classes were open.
The Iron Dome did not function properly except to down one missile on Saturday. The IDF explained that technical failures were to blame, and it downed two rockets Sunday morning.
The expensive system has been ballyhooed by Defense Minister Ehud Barak as a means to defend Israelis against rockets, but its cost and lack of availability to defend all regions have limited its dependability.
The IDF’s retaliation has been tit-for-tat and did not strike at the leaders of Gaza’s terrorist organizations or their headquarters, a move proposed Sunday morning by Shaul Mofaz, former IDF Chief of Staff and Defense Minister and a leading member of the Kadima party.