Israel woke up to a fresh new post-Road Map peace-is-just-around-the-corner Sunday morning, and learned that four Israelis had been murdered by Palestinian terrorists. The three major Palestinian terrorist organizations shared responsibility: one terrorist murderer from each of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Abu Mazen's Fatah.
In yet another murderous attack this afternoon in Hevron, a terrorist who had been hiding in the Machpelah Cave opened fire and killed an Israeli. This brought the number of Israeli terrorist victims in the days since the Aqaba summit to seven.
The first attack happened early this morning at an IDF outpost near the Erez Checkpoint in northern Gaza. Arutz-7's Kobi Finkler reports that the three Palestinian terrorists arrived at the Erez industrial zone some time before 5:30 AM, arousing no suspicion in their stolen IDF uniforms. Thousands of Arab workers who pass through the checkpoint daily on their way to work in pre-1967 Israel were already there. Suddenly, when the first checkpoint soldiers started to approach, the terrorists began firing and throwing shrapnel grenades. Four soldiers were killed on the spot, and four others were wounded before IDF troops responded with gunfire and killed the terrorists. Heavy fog in the area contributed to the immediate confusion. The four wounded soldiers, including one with "moderate" injuries, were evacuated to Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon.
Security sources later said that the Arabs may have originally planned to abduct a soldier. This assumption is based on the fact that together with their rifles and eight magazines each, the terrorists also had handcuffs and masking tape.
The names of three of the four victims have been released:
* Sgt. Boaz Emet, 23, from Beit She'an. His funeral was held this afternoon.
* Sgt. (res.) Udi Eilat, 38, of Eilat
* Assaf Aberjil, 23, of Eilat - for whom this was his first reserve duty stint
This was the worst attack since Bush's euphoria over his "achievements" at the Aqaba summit in having Ariel Sharon promise to dismantle civilian outposts and grant territorial contiguity to a Palestinian state - but it was not the first attack. Just in the past two days alone, Palestinian gunmen fired at an IDF post protecting N'vei Dekalim in Gush Katif, wounding no one, and a terrorist was killed while trying to infiltrate Gush Katif near Kisufim last night. Palestinian Authority terrorists fired several mortar rounds at Jewish communities in Gush Katif, causing property damage. Other very recent terrorist attacks are detailed below.
IDF Southern Command O.C. Gen. Doron Almog said today that Israel gave the PA a list of wanted terrorists last week, but that the PA had done nothing to stop their terrorist activities.