March 7, 2021

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09-Oct-17: Behind those incoming rocket alerts
We originally published this November 2012 Cameron Cardow cartoon here 3 years ago [Image Source: The Cagle Post]

It’s a rainy Monday morning in Jerusalem. But last night and the night before, both of them balmy and conducive to relaxation during a holiday week (Tabernacles, or Sukkot in Hebrew), in-bound missile alerts (emanating from Israel’s advanced Tzeva Adom or Color Red warning system) were sounded in large swathes of southern Israel. These were barely reported outside Israel.

The Saturday night alarm was soon explained by the IDF as a technical error. So, for a while, was Sunday night’s. But about an hour after families rushed to their shelters with sleeping children in their arms, the IDF provided a fuller explanation. Here’s how Times of Israel conveyed it:

A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip failed to reach Israeli territory, the IDF said Sunday night, upending its earlier statement on the incident and confirming retaliatory Israeli artillery fire on a border post… [The] rocket aimed at the Jewish state exploded inside the Gaza Strip. Earlier on Sunday night, the military had said a rocket fell in an open area in the Eshkol region of southern Israel… The would-be rocket strike was the first projectile fired from the coastal enclave in two months. While no group immediately claimed Sunday’s rocket attempt, Israel holds Hamas responsible for all fire emanating from the Strip…  Earlier Saturday, Hamas said it had arrested four senior Islamic State members, including the group’s leader in the coastal enclave. The attempted rocket fire comes as Hamas and the Palestinian Authority are engaged in reconciliation negotiations to see the PA resume civil control of the Gaza Strip… [Backpedaling, IDF says rocket from Gaza failed to hit Israel“, Times of Israel, October 8, 2017]

A Gazan terrorist rocket fired at Israelis but which crash-lands in Gazan territory is a “fell short”, and they fall short often though this is rarely reported either by the Hamas regime which rules Gaza or by the major news agencies [see “18-Nov-12: Fell short? Not just the Hamas rockets but the ethics of the journalists covering them“]. Click here to see other past posts of ours where “Fell Short” is one of the index terms: there are currently nearly 80 of them.

What’s especially interesting about Fell Shorts is that these often crash not just onto Gaza’s territory but onto Gazan heads and homes. On a visit we made a couple of years ago to an IDF installation close to Gaza, we learned about serious injuries caused to hapless Gazans just a few days earlier. These had been reported nowhere – because political considerations cause Gaza rulers to hush up the Arab-on-Arab fall-out resulting from self-inflicted Fell Short explosions. Living under the Hamas jackboot has never been easy.

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