Monday, 11 January 2010

Egyptian opposition activists protest against Mubarak's Gaza wall

From Earth Times
Cairo - Egyptian opposition activists on Monday protested the government's reported construction of an underground wall along the country's border with the Gaza Strip. Dozens of protesters gathered outside the Lawyers' Syndicate in central Cairo, carrying posters of former Egyptian President Gamal Abdel-Nasser and placards accusing Israel and the United States of being behind the construction of the barrier.

Others held signs accusing Egypt of isolating the Gaza Strip for the benefit of Israel.

The protesters chanted slogans calling on Egypt to stop building the wall and calling on Arab countries to stand with the people of Gaza.

Egyptian riot police surrounded the demonstrators to prevent them from spilling into the streets, but made no move to disperse the crowd. more

Resistance retaliates with rocket fire after killing of Islamic Jihad fighters

A Qassam rocket fired by Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip struck the Western Negev on Monday, a day after an Israel Air Force assault killed three Islamic Jihad men posed at a launching ground in the coastal territory. more
Hamas, which has been trying to rein in other resistance groups to being a halt to all rocket fire, is probably none to pleased with the escalating fighting.

Israel preparing for second Gaza war in move to take tunnel corridor

Stories today in the Jerusalem Post and Haaretz indicate that Israel is seriously considering another invasion of Gaza. This form the Post:
The IDF is prepared for the possibility that in a future conflict with Hamas it will be ordered by the government to take over the Philadelphi Corridor in the southern Gaza Strip, which is lined with hundreds of weapons smuggling tunnels, defense officials said on Sunday.

Plans for such an operation have been drawn up and would likely include the deployment of several units in the southern Gaza town of Rafah and along the 14-kilometer strip of land called the Philadelphi Corridor under which Hamas has dug several hundred tunnels that are used to smuggle weapons and explosives into the Strip.

Such an operation would be designed to prevent Hamas from rearming following the larger conflict. It would require troops to go house-to-house in Rafah to search for tunnels and to destroy them. There is also the possibility that following such an operation, the IDF would retain a presence in southern Rafah to prevent the re-digging of the tunnels.

The IDF believes that since Cast Lead ended in mid-January 2009, Hamas has significantly boosted its military capabilities and has obtained long-range rockets, mostly from Iran. One of these rockets was recently tested by Hamas and has a range of more than 60 km., which means it could hit Tel Aviv.

In addition, Hamas is believed to have obtained advanced, mostly Russian-made anti-tank missiles and shoulder-to-air missiles and is reportedly trying to get its hands on an anti-ship missile that would enable it to prevent the navy from attacking Gaza from the Mediterranean. more

And Bradley Burston over at Haaretz is worried. Under the headline 'The looming war in Gaza: Can Obama stop it before it starts?', he draws attention to the 'coolly terrifying analysis' by Yom Tov Samia, former overall Israeli military commander of the Gaza Strip and the adjacent Negev, referred to above.
If last year's brutal fighting is any indication - and there is every reason to believe that it is - a full-on drive to prevent the looming Israel-Hamas confrontation in the Strip belongs at the top tier of Obama's already staggering pile of priorities.

Another Gaza war, this one likely to be an even more bitter onslaught, could not only prove lethal to what is left of Israeli moral credibility, it could undermine and cripple Obama's military-political offensives in Iraq, Afghanistan and, slipping further down the slope, Yemen.

Fatwa against Egypt's steel wall as Israel announces new fence on Egyptian border

A Fatwa has been issued by the Islamic Brotherhood in Jordan against Egypt's steel wall being erected at the border with Gaza. Israel, not wanting to be left has announced that it too is building a wall, in addition to the apartheid barrier already under construction in the West Bank. It intends to build a fence along its border with Egypt to keep out migrants and arms from crossing the frontier.

Anger is rising across the Arab world at the open collaboration of the Egyptian dictatorship with the zionist regime.
"The Egyptian authorities are ...increasing the suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza by building the steel wall and closing the border crossings with Gaza," Hamzah Mansour, a member of the Shura Council of the IAF, told Xinhua Sunday. more

More Israeli airstrikes as three more resistance fighters killed

Another three resistance fighters killed by IDF on Sunday. The fighters were from Islamic Jihad and the organisation has since issued a statement calling for unity among the resistance groups.
After the airstrike, Muawiya Hassanein, chief of Gaza emergency services, said the bodies of three men were taken to a hospital in the town. They were all members of the militant group Islamic Jihad, he said.

The Israeli military said one of the dead, whom they identified as Awad Abu Nasir, was a senior Islamic Jihad field commander behind a string of attacks on Israel.

Islamic Jihad issued a call for all Palestinian “resistance factions to unite against the enemy.” more