To my weary readers - another bad night in Israel.
More than 85 rockets fired from Gaza
Report from Haaretz:
9:47 P.M. The rocket sirens that earlier went off in the Jerusalem area were false alarms. (Gili Cohen)I didn't hear the sirens that went off in Mevasseret and Abu Ghosh, they're too far away. And fortunately, they were false alarms.
9:37 P.M. Hamas claims responsibility for the rockets fired at Ashdod, Ofakim, Ashkelon and Netivot. (Jack Khoury)
8:59 P.M. Two Iron Dome batteries intercepted seven rockets above Ashdod and five above Netivot. (Gili Cohen)
8:40 P.M. One person is lightly wounded by shrapnel in Ashdod. (Haaretz)
8:32 P.M. Rocket sirens sound in Jerusalem areas of Mevasseret, Beit Shemesh and Abu Ghosh, and in the central Israeli cities of Rehovot, Nes Tziona and Yavne for the first time since recent clashes with Gaza. Sirens also go off in Ashdod, Ashkelon, Kiryat Gat, Kiryat Malakhi, Netivot and Ofakim. (Shirley Seidler and Yaniv Kubovich)
8:10 P.M. A barrage of some 20 rockets launched by Gaza militants strikes southern Israel. No injuries were reported at this time. (Shirley Seidler)
Israeli security cabinet decides to escalate fight against Hamas
Israel's security cabinet decided Monday after a three-hour meeting to escalate attacks against Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza. Senior officials in Jerusalem said that the ministers decided to refrain from a large-scale military operation for now, but ordered the army to prepare for significant expansion of the operation.
The Israel Defense Forces is preparing to call up some 1,500 reservists from two infantry brigades around the Gaza Strip as it prepares for the escalation, according to an IDF officer. The official in Jerusalem said the escalation was aimed at halting the rocket fire and would be expanded as necessary if the launches did not cease.
“The blows will be harder,” one of the senior officials said. “Each succeeding day will be harder for Hamas. We will escalate the attacks to make it clear to them that it is in their interest to stop the rocket fire. We are prepared to broaden the operation in case the rocket fire does not stop.”