Beyond the Cusp

July 26, 2014

World News as Heard on Israel Radio

Before we get to the news, a little note about many Israeli radio stations; they are also connected to the government “Code Red” warning system where when a rocket or missile launch has been detected, the government warning is given over the music, news, commercials or whatever is being broadcast by the station without blanking out the station broadcast. Where you might think that such would make the warnings difficult to understand, trust when I tell you that you definitely will hear if your town, village, city, kibbutz or junction is called out for a possible strike. If you live in Sderot or the Kibbutzim and farms close to Gaza you have fifteen seconds to be in a shelter before the explosions might start. What is absolutely amazing is that even with that little amount of a warning the Iron Dome system is still capable of intercepting the projectiles with a better than 80% interception success rate. Tel Aviv has almost a full minute from the Code Red alarm to make it to a shelter. Imagine being on the twenty-third or, in the tallest skyscraper in Tel Aviv, fifty-third floor and hearing the Code Red and then what. So you have a shelter on your floor, what if it is one of the largest of Hamas’s rockets and it hits your building around the third floor taking out about two-thirds of that floor and the one above and below it. Your safe room prevents rockets from sending shrapnel and stop a direct hit but only for the smaller warheads, not the FADJR-5 (a 333mm rocket with a 90kg (200lbs) warhead and range of 75km (46 mile)) or worse the M302 (a 302mm rocket with a 150kg (330lbs) and a range of 150km (93.5 mile)) which are beyond the capabilities of most safe rooms and one is only safe from these in an actual shelter. Worse yet, should one of the M302 escape interception and strike in Tel Aviv, Ashdod, Haifa, Jerusalem, Be’er Sheva, Ashkelon, Hadera, Netanya or many areas of central Israel where many tall building have been constructed and have to rely on safe rooms hopefully on every floor, you are not protected from the building collapsing thus Israel is potentially one unintercepted rocket from potentially over a thousand deaths. With that in mind, let us get to the news of the world as heard on Israeli radio during this conflict.

The investigation and identification of those who died in the shooting down of Malaysian Flight 17 in the Eastern Ukraine continues today. The bodies are being loaded onto trains to be transported and put on flights returning them to their homelands. It is expected that the pro-Russian rebels will release the flight’s black boxes to (Code Red Sderot, Code Red Ashdod, Code Red Ashkelon) Malaysian investigators. While the black boxes are expected to reveal detailed data on the moments before Flight 17 was struck by the anti-aircraft missile, it is (Code Red Ashdod, Code Red Ashkelon, Code Red Tel Aviv) doubtful that much information about the exact events will be revealed as they would have basically not recorded anything after the strike.

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators rioted once again today in Paris attacking police with bottles and stones. Some of the demonstrators broke away from the area and marched on a Paris synagogue where they shouted anti-Semitic chants taunting congregants inside the synagogue to come out and fight. They also threw objects at the synagogue including one firebomb. The building did not catch fire and minimal damage was incurred as the demonstrators were eventually removed by the Paris police.

President Obama cancelled his scheduled appearance on Jimmy Kimmel’s program stating that (Code Red Tel Aviv, Code Red Hadera, Code Red Netanya, Code Red Herzliya) it would be improper for him to appear on a comedy show with world events as they are. The President spoke with the press on his flight between fund raisers he is attending while in California.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and United States Secretary of State Kerry met between trips to Cairo, Qatar, Tel Aviv and other stops during their efforts to put together a ceasefire which would be acceptable to both Hamas and the Israelis. Both men expressed regrets and concerns over the mounting civilian casualties within the Gaza Strip and called on Israel to show the necessary restraint to end the needless bloodshed. Secretary of State Kerry has been talking with Egyptian leaders trying to get them to agree to back and present conditions for a ceasefire which have been crafted by Turkey and Qatar. There has been a hope that a possible humanitarian ceasefire could be reached for over the weekend despite the fact that both Hamas and Israel have thus far refused to sign on to any proposal thus far.

Both the United States Federal Aviation Agency and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency set travel restrictions to and from Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport citing the rocket strike which demolished a home just over a (Code Red Sderot, Code Red Sa’ad, Code Red Qiiryat Gat)  mile from the busy airport. Both agencies said they would be taking precautions on a day by day basis with the determination based on the perceived potential of threats to flights at the Israeli international hub. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu expressed his dismay and concern over the ramifications and potential harm to the Israeli economy, especially the tourism sectors. There has been some hinting that the move was more political than safety oriented as there have been no such bans from flights in and out of other international airports which pose a much greater threat than at Ben Gurion. The commentary has revolved around the fact that at Pakistani international airports there have been attacks on aircraft using anti-aircraft missiles and the threat to flights in and out of Syria’s Damascus International Airport or Baghdad International Airport where anti-aircraft missiles have been employed by terrorist and rebel forces while the rocket which landed in the general area of Ben Gurion International Airport was not an anti-aircraft missile and there has been no anti-aircraft missile threats within Israel at all.

The weather report for Israel tomorrow (Code Red Sderot, Code Red Eilat, Code Red Be’er Sheva, Code Red Netivot, Code Red Rahat) it will continue to be hot in the south and pleasant along the coast with cooler temperatures in the north. Jerusalem will have a slight chance…

This should give one a taste of what Israelis have had to live with for the past seven plus weeks, almost three weeks before Israel launched their initial retaliatory airstrike. The Israelis living in Sderot and surrounding region have lived with the Code Red sirens for the past eighteen months. Many children in Sderot refuse to leave the shelters and others simply will not leave their rooms often even remaining in their beds. The numbers of cases of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) amongst children in these communities is so above normal, which is quite understandable, that the rates have startled the professionals and the severity of many of the cases has entered into new grounds. These cases of trauma will now be spreading further throughout Israel as the rockets are striking several times each day over seventy percent of Israel. Only the extreme northern towns such as Ma’alot, Nahariya, Safed, and surrounding towns and kibbutzim as well as the Golan Heights, which has its own problems with mortars and artillery from the Syrian civil war sometimes straying and other times more intentionally striking within Israeli territory. If not for the miraculous performance and ingenious engineering along with the professionalism of the soldiers manning the Iron Dome anti-rocket and artillery interceptor systems the death toll in both Israel and Gaza would have been astronomically higher. Without the Iron Dome Israel would not have had the luxury of giving the United Nations, European Union and United States the three weeks to attempt to intervene and force Hamas to cease raining rockets down on Israelis. Prime Minister Netanyahu made numerous pleas to the leaders of the United States, European Union and United Nations as did numerous other Israeli officials including numerous ambassadors throughout Europe and the world and both the Israeli United Nations Ambassador Ron Prosor and Representative of Israel to the United Nations in Geneva Ambassador Eviatar Manor trying to get anybody to apply pressure and find some way of forcing Hamas to cease the rocket attacks. Nobody succeeded and this led to the Israeli response. As mentioned, without Iron Dome the Israeli losses would have been horrific and comparable to the losses in Gaza. This would have forced Israel to react sooner and with far greater force and less delicacy of warning the Palestinians when and where the next strikes would be targeting. The warnings would still have been made but with less lead time making the ability to take many possessions near to impossible. As things stand with Iron Dome, there have been times that Israeli warnings were given the day before a strike and most often giving the Palestinians at least half an hour and more when possible. The times when short notice was given were in response to an actual impending rocket launch where the strike became time sensitive and the short time warning was thus necessitated. Still, the only side in the Hamas Israel conflict giving notice of where and when there are strikes is Israel and strangely enough, Israel is often giving the Palestinian in Gaza more lead time with the warnings than Israelis receive of the Hamas rocket launches. This is because Israel can only warn of Hamas rockets once they have been launched and are in the air on their way while Israel can provide the citizens of Gaza longer lead times in the warnings as Israel sends the warnings before the planes are even fueled up and armed. Many Israelis probably wish they could have the same luxury of often hours warning instead of anywhere from fifteen seconds in Sderot to as much as two minutes at the farthest reaches in the north of the Hamas rocket strikes.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

July 21, 2014

Israel Reports of the Expected and the Unexpected

Filed under: 24/7 News Reporting,Act of War,Administration,AFP,Air Strike,Air Support,al-Qaeda in Gaza,Amalekites,Anti Missile System,Anti-Israel,Anti-Semitism,Anti-Zionist,AP,Appeasement,Arab Appeasement,Arab League,Arab World,Arabist,Arabs,Armed Services,Associated Press,Attack,Ban Ki-Moon,BBC,Bedouin Tribes,Blood Libel,Cabinet,Children Crippled,Children Murdered,Civil Disobedience,Civilization,Condemning Israel,Conflict Avoidnce,Defend Israel,Demolitions,Demonstrations,Disengagement,Domestic NGOs,Egypt,Europe,European Council,European Governments,European Media,European Pressure,European Union,Executive Order,Fatah,Field Hospital,Forced Solution,Foreign Funding,Foreign NGOs,Fox,France Channel 2,Government,Government Controlled Media,Haaretz,Hamas,Haniyeh of Hamas,Hate,History,IAF,IDF,Internal Pressures,International Politics,Intifada,Intifada,Iron Dome,ISIS,Islam,Islamic Jihad,Islamic Pressure,Israel,Israeli Capital City,Israeli Interests,Jerusalem,Jewish Heritage,Jewish Home,Jewish Leadership,Jewish State,Jihad,Jihad,John Kerry,Judea,Judean Hills,Kidnap Soldier,Kidnapped Israeli,Mahmoud Abbas,Mainstream Media,Media,Media Bias,Media Censorship,Mediterranean Sea,Military,Military Intervention,Misreporting,Mortar Attacks,Murder Israelis,Muslim Brotherhood,Muslim World,Negev Desert,Netanyahu,NGO,Omission,One State Solution,Palestinian,Palestinian Authority,Palestinian Media,Palestinian Pressures,Political Talk Shows,Politicized Findings,Politics,Prime Minister,Promised Land,Protective Edge,Protests,Qatar,Recognize Israel,Reuters,Riots,Rocket Attacks,Samaria,Secretary General,Secretary of State,Security,Sinai Peninsula,Soldiers,State Department,Statehood,Support Israel,Talking Heads,Tel Aviv,Temple Mount,Terror,Third Intifada,Threat of War,United Nations,United States,United States Pressure,Victims,World Media,World Opinion,World Pressures,World War II,Zionism,Zionist — qwertster @ 3:20 AM
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With the likelihood that both United States Secretary of State John Kerry and entourage as well as United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and his squads of aids and experts will both be descending on Israel, it can also be expected that the numbers of reporters and bureau chiefs will be accompanying one or the other party and simply add to the cacophonous din of small bits of truth lost within voluminous tons of misinformation and broadcast throughout the world, especially in the Western nations of Europe, North America and Australia. Rather than bore you by repeating information you could just as easily learn by switching on the Television or radio news where you will probably hear stories about how one side or the other or both are being intractable and refusing to agree to any ceasefire, I will try to find a few precious pieces of information which you likely have not heard or come across after a short prediction on the coming blitz of the self-important arbiters of the enlightened manners of peaceful coexistence. There will be the commentaries about how Hamas is making some reasonable or ridiculous demands, depending on the network or the host or speaker you hear, and definitely there will be reports that Israel has refused even the smallest of the conditions posed by Hamas in order to reach a ceasefire. There might even be another hilariously insulting monologue from John Stewart which might go something like this, “Well, have you heard the latest from the Middle East? Israel is refusing to allow the Gazans to open their international airport in order to have a ceasefire. The airport? What next, not allowing them to swim in the Mediterranean? Oh, wait, Israel insists on continuing their naval blockade only allowing Gazans to swim and fish in the most shallow waters. This is preventing peace? Next they will be blowing up tunnels, oh, wait, they already have. So, let’s see if I have this correct, no airplane trips to take vacations, no swimming in the deeper waters and no tunnels, I’m surprised Israel doesn’t outlaw cars in Gaza.” John would do better as he has a dozen very funny writers and I don’t do comedy that well which is why I cover news as it is often amusingly ridiculous enough without my assistance.

 

Now for some news that either will be sparsely covered or simply concealed as it would be too revealing of some realities that apparently are too close to the truth which many prefer remain unspoken. The battle which has been being fought since early Saturday has revolved around the Gaza neighborhood of Shejaiya, east of Gaza City, and has been an extremely difficult going for the IDF. Shejaiya is the neighborhood where Hamas locates a large number of their rocket and weapons manufacturing facilities. It also is riddled with underground storage locations which are interconnected by tunnels which lace throughout the area with numerous entrances. This has made clearing the area difficult and probably somewhat reminiscent to military historians of the battle for Stalingrad during World War II and the difficulty of taking the central areas of town and the building referred to as the tractor works. In Stalingrad the sewer tunnels provided the defending troops easy access to supplies and the ability to appear as if out of thin air and ambush the enemy at close quarters. This is the same scenario which caught some members of the Golani Brigade in an ambush by Hamas which resulted in thirteen Israeli fatalities in that one encounter alone. The battle in the streets with door to door encounters within Shejaiya has apparently been so extremely costly for Hamas such that they requested a humanitarian ceasefire in order to remove the dead and wounded. Israel initially denied the request favoring their efforts to continue to push their advantage. Israel relented soon thereafter and not only agreed to a temporary ceasefire for three hours but also granted a two hour extension despite the fact that Hamas had continued launching rockets into Israel throughout the length and breadth of the ceasefire right out of the Shejaiya neighborhood. It is suspected that Hamas utilized the ceasefire to set up the positions with which they launched their ambush of the IDF troops of the Golani Brigade which included seriously wounding Golani Brigade Commander Colonel Raslan Alian. Hamas is using absolutely any advantage they can force or find in order to gain sufficient advantage and make Israel desire ending the carnage and cut their losses making Israel willing to make whatever concessions Hamas demands, or at least sufficient concessions such that Hamas can claim their victory and use such claims to gain an overwhelming victory in any Palestinian elections and thus gain control over Judea and Samaria in addition to Gaza and replace totally Mahmoud Abbas and Fatah making Hamas the sole Palestinian leadership. This would allow Hamas to finally attain their wildest dream of easy range and the advantage of the Judean Hills overlooking central Israel with the majority of Israeli industries, population, infrastructure and her international airport outside Tel Aviv.

 

There are some events revolving around the Erez Crossing in northern Gaza. The IDF is setting up a fully functioning field hospital which even has a delivery room. This field hospital is not for IDF soldiers or even for Israelis, it is for the Palestinians of Gaza, even if they are injured members of Hamas. Of course any Hamas member receiving treatment would not be returned to the fighting, Israelis are compassionate, not insane, though some might debate that with me. The field hospital will likely resemble the field hospital the Israelis constructed in Haiti after the devastating earthquake virtually destroyed that island nation. IDF medical soldiers were reported to have saved the life of a Hamas terrorist fighter. Soldier Daniel Albo was quoted in the Yediot Aharonot new service stating, “My team and I saved the life of a terrorist who tried to kill us because we are IDF soldiers and citizens of Israel. We saved him because we are human. I’m proud to serve in the IDF.” The building of this field hospital is just another facet of the IDF and Israeli government efforts to minimize the numbers and severity of civilian casualties which will treat those who either by choice or having been forced by Hamas terrorists to remain within the areas being contested in this conflict to serve as human shields, some with the hope of becoming martyrs. All the Israeli efforts to warn the civilians of Gaza, even when doing so also alerts Hamas terrorists to Israeli plans, of either imminent bombings, artillery fire or other military operations which would pose a threat to their safety have often proven to be ineffective due to Hamas instructing the Gazan citizenry that the Israeli warnings should not be heeded and they should remain in harm’s way in service of Hamas and to become martyrs. It was some such activities which resulted in the deaths of several relatives of Hamas commander Khalil al-Haya which was also claimed to be part of the reason Hamas requested Israel agree to a humanitarian ceasefire and allow their bodies and others to be properly tended and removed from the area of continuing combat.

 

Now for the one oddity which you are unlikely to hear about in your morning newscasts. You see, not all of the relatives of the Hamas leadership are in danger inside Gaza and are in somewhat less danger but in danger just the same and that danger for them is Hamas. While former Hamas and Gazan Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh may have stepped down from his position to permit the formation of the new Palestinian unity government and taken refuge safely far from the fray in Qatar, some members of his family remain endangered in the current fighting. These relatives are his three sisters, Kholidia, Laila and Sabah. All three married Bedouins and moved into Israel where they became citizens some thirty years ago. Bedouins used to take brides from amongst the Gazan Arab communities due to the lack of available women in their tribes, the Tel Sheva Bedouins. Salameh Abu Rukayek, the Bedouin who married Kholidia recently told an interviewer, “Our life is normal here and we want it to continue.” The three sisters live currently somewhere within the Negev Desert in an undisclosed location for their privacy as well as safety. The three sisters are far from the only members of the Haniyeh family which have received assistance from Israel. Both his mother in-law and granddaughter have received medical treatments over the past year all at the same time as their dear relative, Ismail Haniyeh, was swearing to have pledged to Israel’s complete and utter destruction.” Add to this that during the entirety of the three weeks when the rocket fire into Israel by Hamas was escalating and the two weeks of actual open conflict that Israel has continued to supply Gazans with truckloads measured in tons per day of food, medical supplies and other necessities. Israel has also continued to provide Gazans with much of their fresh water supply and close to two-thirds of Gazan electricity until one of the Hamas rockets damaged one of the high voltage lines transferring electrical power into Gaza. So far no technician has volunteered to attempt to repair the broken high voltage line supplying Gaza as the repairs would necessitate working within easy sniper range from Hamas snipers in Gaza. There has been a history of sniper fire being loosed on repair technicians working on electrical equipment which provides power to Gaza including an Arab employee who was murdered while attempting to repair similar damage during a period of relative tranquility. Relative tranquility does not mean complete absence of violence but rather under a couple dozen rockets per month and the taking of every opportunity to shoot at or murder by other means anyone within range from within Gaza. That included the firing of a guided antitank rocket fired into a school bus which resulted in the death of the last remaining young teen as the rest of the children had disembarked seconds and several yards at the previous stop preventing a larger tragedy.

 

With Secretary Kerry and Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon et al arriving in the near future within Israel we can expect them to pressure Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to cease all further IDF actions inside Gaza whether Hamas agrees to end the violence or not. One for the arguments will echo the protesters from around the globe who point to the facts that the Israeli casualty rates are far lower than that of the Gazans. The fact that without the building of hundreds of shelters and the Iron Dome extremely effective protective shell there would have been tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of Israeli fatalities and near countless casualties of all varieties and severity. There have been over one-hundred rockets intercepted by the Iron Dome, which because the system only launches to intercept those projectiles which by computations are guaranteed to strike within built-up areas. With the majority of those intercepted having been aimed at Haifa, Tel Aviv, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Beersheba, Jerusalem and the densely populated central areas of Israel the carnage would have been unimaginable. Imagine rockets pummeling central Tel Aviv or Jerusalem and exploding destroying the type of buildings found in most major cities. The people within these buildings would not have had sufficient time to escape the building and there could easily have been numerous large building collapses daily in the cities around much of Israel. The miracle of the Iron Dome is all which stood between the rain of Hamas rockets and the destruction of Israeli society from the threats of the steel rain falling over Israel exploding away lives as well as buildings and infrastructure. Those who continue to claim that Israel is using excessive force and military power may have another reality they are expressing in a coded manner, the desire to see more dead Israelis, more dead Jews. These are the people who were witnessed through media rampaging across Paris and who assaulted two synagogues and attempted to injure or kill the Jews inside those synagogues. The rioters in Paris are not alone in their desires as there have been numerous such riots and massive demonstrations across the Western world as well as the Arab and Muslim worlds all calling for the destruction of Israel for the benefit of mankind, an old canard which still refuses to quiet. A hunger which is warned about in the Passover service where it warns stating, “In each generation, there are those that rise up against us to destroy us.”

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

November 26, 2012

Iron Dome Success Will Make Israeli Defense Actually More Difficult

With the success of the Iron Dome interceptor system in the recent Operation Pillar of Defense the bar will be raised for Israel to engage in any future military operations in defense of the Israeli people. The rest of the world, especially the EU, the UN, the United States and the Muslim World will point to the lack of casualties as a reason that Israel will be able to live with any level of rockets being fired into their territories. Needless to point out that the huge cost differential where Israel is using as much as $50,000.00 each time they intercept rockets which range in cost from $25.00 to possibly as high as $500.00. Such a huge cost differential will pose a great challenge to Israel monetarily and most probably nobody will be willing to help defray the exorbitant costs.

Sometime in the future, once again, Israeli lives will be in the balance of what actions the world is willing to take, and do not think for a minute that the world does not equate Israeli lives with Jews despite their being a significant number of Israelis who are not Jews. It will be a case where Israel is being bombarded on at least two if not all sides by incoming rockets. These will be simple rockets with sufficient range to travel between a few kilometers to the length of Israel and the vaunted Israel rocket shield will be called upon to protect the people. Such a situation need not but does not preclude the use of longer range missiles from as far as Iran, Libya, Turkey or even Pakistan which will require Israel to bring every form of her defenses to bare to prevent certain catastrophe. Upon such an event Israel could soon be pressed to defend her people at the expense of her economic health and thus push Israel to the breaking-point. There will be meetings and hand-wringing but no relief while the bombardment continues until Israel literally is near to or out of defensive missiles to intercept the incoming rounds. This time there will be no world riding to the rescue as has been the case each and every time Israel has stood perched at delivering a decisive blow to her enemies. At best the world will prepare touching eulogies.

There is a path which would prevent such an inevitability, if only the world would be willing to accept the real truth and live up to their promises, even half of their promises. Israel has been promised more than once that the world will place forces in the Sinai Peninsula to prevent attacks on Israel from this front only to have them pulled at the first request by any Egyptian ruler. Israel was guaranteed that the UNIFIL forces in southern Lebanon would prevent the buildup of Hezballah and then reassure that the larger UNIFIL would be different and effective this time, but their efficiency was only improved at turning a blind eye and looking the other way. Israel was promised the world supported her if she would enter into the Oslo Accords and talk to the Palestinians. The world lied to all sides here as the life of the Palestinians took a turn for the worse with the return of Yasser Arafat and his kleptomaniacs masquerading as a government. When Britain decided that there was a need for a Palestinian Arab State in 1922 taken from the British Mandate Lands they along with the League of Nations and much of Europe and the rest of the world guaranteed the Zionists that this would be the final theft of their promises and if they were allowed to take 78% of the Mandate and form Transjordan (now Jordan) that every inch of the lands west of the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea that were within the British Mandate Lands would be used in its entirety for the Jewish State. This was the second denial of land pulled by the British who agreed to place the Golan Heights, originally to be part of the British Mandate, under the French Mandate thus leaving it for either Christian State of Lebanon or the Arab State of Syria.

All of this makes one wonder why Israel deigns to entertain any of the pleadings or even the demands of the rest of the world and they likely would not if not that Israel, as a whole, really desires above all else peace and acceptance, the two things most denied her. May the day not be necessary that with Israel forced by the world to return to borders closely resembling the 1949 Armistice Lines, the Green Line or 67 Line, and once again her neighbors and even their neighbors bring all their armies to drive them into the sea and miraculously Israel manages to survive the initial shock and is moving on Damascus, Beirut, Cairo, and/or any combination of such Capital cities of her enemies, may for once Israel not heed the worldly cries that the horrors and carnage of war and violence must stop and Israel just ignore their pleadings and demands realizing that were the battle to ever go against Israel the World would respond with silent smiles of contentment. I am not calling for that libelous “Greater Israel” to become a reality as much as I am calling on the world to finally honor any of their promises and bring peace to the slight little sliver of land huddled along the shores of the eastern edge of the Mediterranean Sea so that we can live in peace and simply bring innovations and miraculous cures into the world instead of bearing the brunt of the World’s ire.

Beyond the Cusp

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