Israel Air Force Commander Grounds Warplanes
Israel Air Force Commander Maj.General Amir Eshel has grounded all warplanes for one day. The decision was made Sunday to ground all fighter jets and other military aircraft for one day, according to a military source, due to a recent near-collision by two fighter jets. No further details about the close call were made available to media.
Exceptions were made, however, for pilots flying defense missions. The Air Force was active as usual in targeting terrorist activity in Gaza in response to rocket attacks. Pilots foiled a terror attack early Sunday in a third counter terrorist air strike in Gaza within a 24 hour period.
The strike sent a clear message to Hamas, reminding the region's ruling terrorist organization that Israel will not tolerate attacks on its southern towns and cities.
Southern Israeli families were unable to properly celebrate the holidays of Sukkot (Festival of Booths), Hoshana Raba, Shemeni Atzeret and Simchat Torah due to sporadic rocket and mortar attacks fired from the region at western Negev communities.
The attacks continued into the period just following the holiday, when families usually celebrated the “Second Hakafot” of Simchat Torah in solidarity with their Jewish brethren who observe a two-day holiday in the Diaspora.
Although the United Nations Security Council swifly condemned Syria for shelling a Turkish border town earlier this month that left five people dead, the international body has yet to condemn Gaza for its incessant, deadly missile and mortar attacks on southern Israel.