Gazans cower under fire, anger at Israel mounts
Updates toll, paragraph 9)
By Nidal al-Mughrabi
GAZA, March 1 (Reuters) – Under the most intense Israeli bombardment in years, the people of Gaza took cover on Saturday, some comforting children caught in the firing line, many saying the onslaught may bolster support for Israel’s Hamas enemies.
“We are living in the middle of the battle zone. We wanted to flee the house but we’ve been trapped since last night,” 21-year-old Rami Mohammed Ali said by telephone from his home in Jabalya town as explosions and gunfire thundered outside.
“Rockets and missiles are whistling by all the time and the building has been shaken by mines the Palestinians are setting off against the Israeli soldiers who are invading,” he said.
“My little nephews have been crying the whole time.”
The area, in the north of the Gaza Strip, has been at the heart of ground combat between Israeli troops and Islamist militants who have continued to fire rockets from around Jabalya into Israeli towns — the reason Israel says it is attacking.
Mohammed Ali, who lives with his brother’s family and sister, said: “We’ve had a dilemma over which room is safer. In the end we all squeezed into the inner hallway, like sardines.”
It is an experience Israelis say has been shared by thousands of their citizens for months in border towns like Sderot and, since Hamas began using longer-range rockets, has now started to disrupt life in the city of Ashkelon.
Palestinians and critics of Israeli tactics say the response to random rocket fire that has killed three Israelis in a year — the most recent on Wednesday — is disproportionate.
In the past four days, 95 Gazans have been killed, dozens of them civilians, including children as young as six months. On Saturday alone, 30 civilians were among 60 people killed in the bloodiest day since a Palestinian uprising began in 2000.
This is one of the most frustrating aspects of politics for those of us on the Right. Gaza and the PA elect Hamas, a declared terror organization, to represent them in government. Being a terror organization, and being that a leopard cant change its spots, Hamas launches rocket attacks into Israel and then hides among the citizenry, most of whom are at least complicit by their silence. Israel has enough and goes after the terrorists, only to be besieged in the press, and from the Left. Israel caves and withdraws and the terror continues. In my lifetime, I hope to see Israel secure once and for all, and if that means absorbing and taking over the territories and deporting those without Israeli passports, so be it. Deported to Saudi Arabia who has plenty of money and space. To Syria, who supplies the PA and Hamas with terror weapons. To Sudan and Somalia to join the other rock throwers and tire burners. Harsh? Maybe, but enough is enough. Its time Israel to solve this problem once and for all.