After a week of precision bombing by the IAF led to the shelling last night of Northern Gaza. This evening forces of the IDF entered Gaza. Their objective is to take control of the area where the majority of rockets are being fired from. The same area which Israel left in 2005.
Under International Law Gaza is no longer to be considered occupied (go tell that to the Moonbats on the left and the MSM)as Israel does not exercise effective control or authority over any land or institutions in the Gaza Strip. The fourth section of The Hague convention of 1907, Article 42 defines occupation as:
Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army.Israel relinquished all control over Gaza in 2005. It was also given assurance by President Bush and leaders of the Palestinian Authority that there would be no further attacks made on Israel.
The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised.
So much for assurances by leaders. The rocket attacks into Israel not only continued, but intensified to the point that even the boneheads in Jerusalem, the Kadima led government, could not ignore the suffering in Sderot, Ashkelon, Ashdod and the Western Negev. Thus the start of Operation Cast Lead a week ago and now the ground operation that has started.
For the first time since the start of Operation Cast Lead, the IDF sent ground troops into the Gaza Strip on Saturday evening.The objective is very simple, not the complete take over of the Gaza Strip, but the elimination of the launch pads from Gaza.
The IDF said that the purpose of the ground operation was to eliminate launching pads in northern Gaza from which specific long-range rockets had been fired into southern Israel.
Large forces from the army's infantry, tanks and artillery units are among those participating in the mission.
Several hours earlier, the army began to fire artillery shells into the northern part of the Strip.
According to reports, the artillery units were attacking targets in northern Gaza from where Palestinian terrorists had been firing rockets at southern Israel.
Warplanes, gunboats and artillery units blasted more than 40 Hamas targets throughout Saturday, including Hamas's central intelligence headquarters in Sha'ati, weapons storage facilities, training centers and Hamas leaders' homes.
3 senior officials in as many days. Already Hamas is boasting that they killed an Israeli soldier, but reports from the field show that fighting is light to moderate with the IDF losing no men. It seems that Hamas is waiting, biding its time, choosing the place it will actually fight, praying that the
The IAF also hit the home of senior Hamas commander Abu Zacharia Al-Jamal. A Hamas spokesman announced that al-Jamal was killed in the attack, which would make him the third senior operative in the group to be targeted in the past three days.
In addition, Palestinians reported four dead in an IAF strike in the Rafah area.
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told Channel 2 Saturday night, "We will do all that is necessary to provide a different reality for southern Israel, which has been under constant attacks for the past eight years."
In Saturday morning attacks, the army struck the homes of two Hamas operatives, saying the buildings were used to store weapons and plan attacks. Hamas outposts, training camps and rocket launching sites also were targeted, it said.
Hamas has boasted in the last week that they will fight as soon as troops entered Gaza. That every man, woman, and child will give up their lives for Hamas. And that the world will force Israel to leave.
So far they haven't come out to fight. We don't see thousands of Gazans blowing themselves up. And the world is on vacation until Monday.
What happens in the next 48 hours is critical. If Israel can achieve their objective by then, then a clear victory will have been made. If the world starts to demand a withdrawal, will Israel listen? Will the US have the balls to veto such a request? Will Hamas survive this latest assault?
The nation of Israel holds its breath, waiting to see what Hamas' and the World's response will be.