In response to the incessant rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip – more than 700 have struck Israel since the beginning of the year, and more than 120 since Saturday – the IDF has launched a widespread campaign against terror targets in Gaza. The operation, called Pillar of Defense, has two main goals: to protect Israeli civilians and to cripple the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza.
This post will provide updates as they become available. All times are Israeli time (GMT +2). Times are approximate. Post last updated at 8:36 AM on Nov. 15.
Thursday, November 15th, 2012
09:17 AM: Three Israeli civilian killed by rocket fired from Gaza.
8:58 AM: Rocket from Gaza hits a house in southern Israel. 133 rockets fired from Gaza during the last 24 hours.
8:32 AM: Since midnight, the Iron Dome has intercepted 13 rockets fired from Gaza into Israel.
7:23 AM: This morning, the IDF dispersed leaflets above several locations in the Gaza Strip, warning local residents to stay away from Hamas and other terrorist organizations.
The contents of the leaflet:
“Important announcement for the residents of the Gaza Strip:
For your own safety, take responsibility for yourselves and avoid being present in the vicinity of Hamas operatives and facilities and those of other terror organizations that pose a risk to your safety.
Hamas is once again dragging the region to violence and bloodshed. The IDF is determined to defend the residents of the State of Israel. This announcement is valid until quiet is restored to the region.
Israel Defense Forces Command.”
7:18 AM: Overnight, approximately 100 medium and long range rocket launch and infrastructure sites across the Gaza Strip were targeted. The aim of this targeting is to impair the rocket launching capability of terror organizations in the Gaza Strip such as Hamas, and damage their future build up. Furthermore, IAF aircraft targeted several rocket launching squads while these were preparing to fire rockets into Israel, and tank shells were used to target several terror activity sites.
5:30 AM: So far today an additional seven rockets fired from Gaza hit Israel. Since the beginning of the operation, 54 rockets struck southern Israel — overall, 822 rockets in 2012. The Iron Dome system has successfully intercepted 28 rockets, while IDF forces have struck 105 terror targets throughout the Gaza Strip.
4:30 AM: Since the beginning of the operation, the IDF has struck approximately 100 terror targets, with the combined forces of the Israeli Air Force and Navy. So far the Iron Dome system has successfully intercepted 28 rockets.
12:30 AM: Iron Dome has intercepted 27 rockets fired from Gaza. Hamas continues to target Israeli civilians.
Wednesday, November 14th, 2012
12:00 AM: Overall, 47 rockets fired from Gaza hit southern Israel, while an additional 27 rockets were successfully intercepted by the Iron Dome system.
10:50 PM: Over the past few hours, the IDF has targeted dozens of Hamas’ medium range (up to 40km ) underground rocket launching sites and other weapons storage facilities.
10:00 PM: As of this time, the Iron Dome has intercepted 17 rockets fired from Gaza. Hamas continues to try to attack Israeli civilians.
9:55 PM: The IDF publishes an aerial photo of a long-range rocket launch site in the Zeitoun neighborhood of Gaza, meters away from a mosque and playground.
9:30 PM: The IDF publishes an aerial video of a long-range Fajr-5 rocket in Gaza.
8:35 PM: The Iron Dome has intercepted 13 rockets fired from the Gaza Strip.
8:30 PM: The Israeli Navy has struck terror sites in the Gaza Strip.
7:15 PM: The IDF publishes video of its pinpoint strike on Ahmed Jabri, the head of Hamas’ military wing in Gaza.
5:35 PM: The IDF has seriously damaged Hamas’ long-range missile capabilities (40 km/25 mi range) & underground weapons storage facilities.
4:30 PM: In the past hour, the IDF targeted Ahmed Jabri, the head of Hamas’ military wing, in the Gaza Strip. Jabri was a senior Hamas operative who served in the upper echelon of the Hamas’ command and was directly responsible for executing terror attacks against Israel in the past.