By Stan Goodenough - Jerusalem Newswire - December 2, 2005
Israelis were promised that withdrawing from Gaza would result in being able to drop the area as a major security concern.
But expected Palestinian Authority action against terror has not been forthcoming, the international community has not afforded Israel any meaningful understanding for its right to respond to and deter attacks on its citizens, and Gaza has instead become a thorn in Israel side.
So said Brig.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi, commander of the IDF's Gaza Division, in a message to Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz explaining that the number of terrorist incidents emanating from Gaza since Israel left the area “is enormous.”
The army has reported 75 incidents of small arms fire from Gaza, 130 Kassam rocket and mortar shell attacks, and at least 18 bombs planted along the border fence – the smallest one weighing some 40 kilograms – since Israel's “disengagement” from the coastal strip, according to Ynet.
“This isn't the border we intended” when Israel decided to relinquish Gaza under the directives of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Kochavi said.
Many security experts, including Likud leadership candidate Binyamin Netanyahu, are warning this is just the beginning, and that Gaza is likely to become the gateway for an unprecedented wave of Islamic terrorism against Israel's Jews.
Meanwhile, Senior Likud MK Yuval Steinitz issued a blistering attack against Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz Thursday for reneging on their commitment to protect Israel from any post-Gaza withdrawal violence by unleashing a most severe military response at the first sign of “Palestinian” aggression.
Instead, the IDF has been reduced to lobbing a few shells into open fields in retaliation for recent terrorist artillery attacks.
“I am sure the Gazans are laughing at us more than they are scared by our shooting at them,” Steinitz, who chairs the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, told Arutz 7.