Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

9 Tammuz 5766 - July 5, 2006 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Israel Working to Ensure no Supply Crisis in Gaza

by M Plaut and Yated Ne'eman Staff

Israeli authorities have been very careful to monitor the level of basic supplies in the Gaza area to ensure that there are adequate amounts of the basic necessities.

According to the most current data, the inventory of basic goods and medicines in the Gaza Strip is ample. At the beginning of the week, the flour supply in Gaza was expected to last for at least a month. The current estimated amount of fuel available at gas stations throughout Gaza was 1,300,000 liters.

In accordance with the decisions of the political echelon, the Karni goods crossing and Nahal Oz fuel terminal were opened on Sunday for the passage of food items and fuel into the Gaza Strip. They have been closed due to serious warnings of attacks on those installations.

Criminal Palestinian terrorists do not avoid threats and attacks on these passage points, despite the hardship that these attacks and the response to the attacks bring to the entire Palestinian population. The closure of these gateways prevents the export of Palestinian goods as well as the import of outside material. Gaza currently has no other commercial point of contact with the outside world.

At Karni crossing on Sunday, at least 50 truckloads of basic food items were transferred to Gaza including: wheat, corn, cooking oil, meat, fruit and milk. The transfer of medicines was also approved but was delayed, as the need for medical supplies was not deemed urgent by Red Cross officials.

At the Nahal Oz fuel terminal the following quantities of fuel and natural gas were transferred to the Palestinians: 1,000,000 liters of diesel fuel; 80,000 liters of gasoline; 200 tons of natural gas (for cooking).

Israel continues to supply both water and electricity to the Gaza Strip and in light of the current situation has increased the amount it supplies.

The Israeli defense establishment monitors the supply reserves in the Gaza Strip based on supplies entering Gaza through the various crossings. Israel has allowed the opening of the crossings despite the existing security threats to supply current needs and also to allow the Palestinians to build up reserves in order to prevent any future disruptions from causing unexpected shortages.

Because the Palestinian militants operate from within the civilian noncombatant population, the IDF operates in a cautious and measured manner to reduce the risk of harming the Palestinian civilian population. It continues its ongoing operation to secure the release of Cpl. Gilad Shalit and to target terror cells and terrorist infrastructure.

At the weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said, "My government has instructed the IDF and the security establishment to do everything in order to bring Gilad back home to his family safe and sound.

"We and the international community know that Gilad is being held by a bloodthirsty gang of terrorists who are causing us much suffering but who are mainly hurting the Palestinian population, which is bearing the results of this terrorist activity. The Government of Israel has no interest in harming the Palestinian population.

"We have no intention of capitulating to blackmail. Everyone knows that capitulating to terrorism today means inviting the next act of terrorism. We will not do this."

The Prime Minister expressed special appreciation for Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's efforts to bring about Cpl. Shalit's release.

The situation remained very murky. It is not clear who is holding Cpl. Shalit and there is no voice that speaks with authority on the Palestinian side. No proof has been given by anyone that his group is holding Cpl. Shalit and that he is alive.

Palestinian spokesmen couch all their pronouncements in conditional statements that in summary mean nothing. For example, Hamas spokesman Osama al-Muzaini said, "They [referring to those holding Cpl. Shalit] may kill him, take him to another country or may hide him. All options are open." Abu al-Muthana, a spokesman for the Army of Islam in the Gaza Strip, said on Tuesday morning, "Whether he will be killed or not killed, we will not disclose any information about the fate of the soldier. We will not kill the soldier, if he is still alive."

The statements all have no content, presumably by the design of the Palestinians who make them. But it means that their statements have no expressive power, and cannot be the basis for any dialogue.

The Cabinet approved a plan to reinforce educational institutions in communities near the Gaza Strip. The main points of the plan are: Two-thirds of schools will be reinforced ahead of the beginning of the 2006-2007 school year. The remaining one-third will be reinforced by the end of the autumn holidays. The IDF Home Front Command will supervise the implementation of the project, including an informational campaign among students, teachers, principals, parents and local council heads.


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