IDF says Gaza´s Islamic Jihad severely damaged (JERUSALEM POST) By YAAKOV KATZ 03/18/12)
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Gazans fired a few rockets at Israel on Friday, but none on Saturday
as of press time. IDF sources said that Islamic Jihad was severely
beaten in the recent round of violence and that it would need time to
rebuild its capabilities.
The air force bombed more than 40 targets throughout the Gaza Strip
over the past week, including nearly 20 rocket squads, and several
weapons storage centers and underground long-range rocket launchers.
On Friday, one of the Kassam rockets hit in the Eshkol regional. No
one was wounded.
After a week when many schools in the South were closed, all classes
were expected to return to normal on Sunday.
“Islamic Jihad was hit hard in the recent round of violence but the
rocket fire continued since it needs to be able to have the last
word,” a senior IDF source said over the weekend.
On the other hand, the source said that the IDF was impressed by
Islamic Jihad’s ability to fire more than 300 rockets during the main
five days of hostilities, even though a significant number hit in
Gaza and close to 60 were intercepted by the Iron Dome counter-rocket
The IDF source said that by last Tuesday, Islamic Jihad was “begging”
Egypt to convince Israel to accept a ceasefire.
The source also said that Israel was satisfied with Egypt’s role in
brokering the truce, an indication that Cairo still had influence in
the Gaza Strip.
The IDF believes that Islamic Jihad refrained from firing its long-
range Iranian-supplied Fajr-5 artillery rockets that have the
capability to hit Tel Aviv.
Meanwhile on Friday, IDF Spokesman Brig.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai accused
Tehran of “pulling the strings” behind the rocket fire against Israel
from the Gaza Strip. As reported last week in The Jerusalem Post, IDF
Military Intelligence said that Iran was actively encouraging Islamic
Jihad to continue and even escalate its rocket attacks against Israel.
“The regime of ayatollahs in Iran continues to operate proxies in
Lebanon and Gaza and to support them with weapons and funds,”
Mordechai wrote on his Facebook wall. Next to the comment, Mordechai
has posted a cartoon of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad holding
puppets of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Hamas Prime Minister
Ismail Haniyeh. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post 03/18/12)
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