Ashkelon — The New Sderot?

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Sixteen-year-old Liz Sheetrit and her family stand in their homes with shell-shocked expressions as they point to their burnt front yard and shattered kitchen window. “I can’t believe this happened to us,” Liz exclaims. A Grad rocket fired from Gaza struck the family’s street this past Saturday night, damaging four homes in their neighborhood, leaving a splattering of shrapnel holes, shattered glass, and pieces of metal stuck in the housing exterior.

Liz says she feels only slightly lucky. She and her family were thankfully not home at the time of the explosion but her dog, which was home at the time of the explosion, harbored some marks from the attack.

The Sheetrit family and the other neighborhood families are lucky for another reason too. They live in relatively new homes, all of which have bomb shelters. “Our neighbors entered their shelter as soon as the alarm went off. If they had been anywhere near the kitchen or living room, someone could have been seriously injured,” Liz’s father said.

More than fifty percent of Ashkelon’s residents live in older buildings that were built without shelters, according to a municipal spokesperson, Yossi Assoulin.

“But thanks to the Iron Dome, residents here, even during Grad rocket attacks from Gaza, haven’t lost their sense of security,” explains Assoulin.

The Iron Dome is a mobile air defensive system that was developed in Israel to intercept incoming Palestinian rockets through a special radar detecting system. Although the system has been criticized for its steep operating costs, it has become an important tool in defending Israeli civilians by successfully shooting down countless rockets. Israel plans to invest $1 billion in the Iron Dome missile defense system in coming years, of which the US Congress has approved to provide $205 million.

However, the defense system offers no guarantees.

On the same day that the Sheetrit family’s home was struck by rocket shrapnel, an Ashkelon man, Moshe Ami, a father of four, was killed in a rocket attack on his way home. The air raid siren, which gives Ashkelon residents about 25 seconds to find cover, went off as Ami was driving home in the heart of the city along Rabin Road. Unable to make it to the shelter in time, a piece of shrapnel from the rocket explosion mortally struck Ami and he later died of his wounds in Ashkelon’s Barzilai Medical Center.

In addition to Ashkelon, a city of over 120,000, the barrage of Grad missiles also struck Be’er Sheva, Ofakim, and Ashdod, considered major metropolitan areas of Israel’s south. The rockets hit an Ashdod school and caused extensive damage to countless buildings and homes in residential neighborhoods across the region. Twenty Israelis were hospitalized for shock and injury including a baby.

A total of 35 projectiles including Iranian-made Grads and mortar shells struck Israel this past Saturday.

Elad, an Ashkelon taxi driver, who was born and raised in the city, said that Saturday night was a nightmarish experience. “Working as a taxi driver during these kinds of terror attacks is the worst experience. While everyone else stays at home and in their shelters, we have to go out to make our living.”

“There’s no way we can make peace now,” the Israeli taxi driver continued. “There is no one to make peace with. How many more rocket attacks are needed to prove that?”

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  • LindaRivera

    In response to thousands of rockets, Israel surrendered up Gaza to Islam. 10,000 Gush Katif, Gaza Jews were ruthlessly ethnically cleansed from Gaza from land that NEVER belonged to Arabs. Muslim mobs celebrated by desecrating and destroying Gaza's sacred synagogues where the One Supreme G-D of the Universe was worshipped.

    The jihad is against the Holy One. The jihad has always been against the Holy One and His Holy Laws:


    Forced into poverty and homelessness, many of Gaza's evicted Jews lived in tents for a very long time. The rocket firing from Gaza increased. It was Jewish LAND IN RETURN FOR WAR. Greatly increased war.

    Israel's Jews in numerous cities live in daily fear of Islam's rocket attacks. The response of the US/EU/UK/UN and even Israel's Prime Minister is SURRENDER. Submit to Islam. Give Muslims EVERYTHING they demand. SURRENDER. And this is with the knowledge that every land surrender results in greatly increased war.

    What kind of leaders are leading the Free World? Leaders who believe only in submission and surrender to Islam, resulting in terrible suffering and eventual Muslim conquest of intensely hated infidels. And descent into hell on earth.

  • LindaRivera

    It is urgent that all Israelis discuss the extremism that created the Oslo Covenant with Death resulting in suffering, death and war. Many people believe that Rabin was assassinated because he planned to STOP Oslo. Read the following from IMRA:

    Dalia Rabin: My father might have stopped Oslo

    "Many people who were close to father told me that on the eve of the murder
    he considered stopping the Oslo process because of the terror that was
    running rampant in the streets and that Arafat wasn't delivering the goods.

    Father after all wasn't a blind man running forward without thought.

    I don't rule out the possibility that he considered also doing a reverse on
    our side.

    After all he was someone for whom the security of the state was sacrosanct.

    So they say that Oslo brought Arafat and gave them rifles and caused the
    intifada. But historical processes develop, change and flow. It is
    impossible to take a person murdered in '95 and judge him according to what
    happened in 2000."

    Dalia Rabin, daughter of PM Yitzchak Rabin
    Interviewed in the Seven Days magazine supplement of Yediot Ahronot
    8 October 2010

    [Translation by IMRA]

  • aspacia

    Obimbo is out globally schmoozing while our cities burn and Israel is attacked. What a worthless piece of dung.