Skip to comments.Hamas gunman hit by IAF in Gaza after IDF soldier killed
Posted on 01/27/2009 10:08:05 AM PST by Nachum
The Islamic Hamas movement said one of its members has been wounded in an Israeli airstrike in the southern Gaza Strip.
The airstrike comes hours after a roadside bomb along Israel's border with Gaza killed an IDF soldier and wounded three others.
Hamas said the man was struck as he was riding a motorcycle in the southern Gaza town of Khan Younis. Residents said Israeli tanks and bulldozers have also entered the area where the roadside bombing took place and were leveling some farmland.
Before noon Tuesday, an IDF non-commissioned officer was killed when a roadside bomb planted by Gaza operatives along Israel's border with the Strip detonated under the army vehicle he was traveling in.
Another officer was seriously wounded and two soldiers were lightly hurt in the incident near the Kissufim crossing, the army said.
The casualties were evacuated to Soroka Hospital in Beersheba.
The family of the fatality requested that neither his name nor his photo be published.
Following the incident, the IDF fired at several targets inside Gaza and IDF soldiers briefly crossed the border in search of the attackers.
IAF helicopters hovered in the air firing machine gun bursts, Palestinian witnesses said. An IAF jet set off a loud sonic boom over Gaza City not long afterward, possibly as a warning.
Palestinians reported that several people were wounded when IDF tank shells hit residential buildings in the Strip.
It was not clear if the bomb had been planted after the cease-fire took hold, or whether it was an older device.
There was no claim of responsibility for the attack, but Mushir al-Masri, a Hamas leader, said Israel was to blame for continuing to fire into Gaza. Al-Masri said his group had not agreed to a full cease-fire but only to a "lull" in fighting.
"The Zionists are responsible for any aggression," he said.
Israel closed its crossings into Gaza to humanitarian aid traffic after briefly opening them Tuesday morning. Gaza border official Raed Fattouh said Israeli officials informed him the closure was due to the attack.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak convened top security officials to discuss a response to the incident.
During a tour of the Ze'elim base in the South, he called the incident "severe" and promised an Israeli response. Barak would not say what the nature or extent of the response to the attack would be.
The defense minister told reservists that despite the "massive hit" suffered by Hamas during Operation Cast Lead, there was still a constant threat of attacks along the border with Gaza, "or even an incident that we will have to respond to."
An IDF official told Army Radio that until a long-term truce agreement was reached, Hamas would continue to try and attack soldiers.
In related news, the army said Tuesday that Hamas fired a Kassam into the sea on Sunday to test the range of rockets still in its arsenal.
The morning's incident marks the first clash between troops and Gaza gunmen since the IDF completed its withdrawal from Gaza on Wednesday.
However, it wasn't the first time Palestinians had launched attacks from the Strip since Operation Cast Lead ended over a week ago with Israel's unilateral cease-fire last Saturday followed by a truce declared by Hamas the next day.
Last Tuesday, Palestinian gunmen opened fire on IDF soldiers in two separate incidents near the Gaza border, and eight mortar shells were also fired at southern Israel. No one was wounded and no damage was reported in the attacks
Praying for Israel to be victorious in this—they don’t have a choice—they *have* to finish this!!
Waiting for the MSM to start the ‘disproportionate response’ crap in 3...2...1...