Monday, June 26, 2006

2 Soldiers Killed - 1 Kidnapped - PM Olmert Convenes Political-Security Cabinet

(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)

The Political-Security Cabinet convened this afternoon (Sunday),
25.6.06, and made the following decisions:

1. Israel views the terrorist incident that occurred today with utmost severity.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) - the PA Chairman and the PA government - is
responsible for the event with all this implies.

2. Israel will take all necessary actions in order to bring about the
release of abducted soldier Cpl. Gilad Shalit.

This objective has top priority and, to this end, the Cabinet approves all the
preparations that were presented to it by the security establishment.

3. The PA will bear full responsibility for any harm to Cpl. Shalit.
No person or organization will have immunity at this time.

4. The Cabinet approves the security establishment's recommendations to prepare
and deploy the necessary forces in order to be ready for urgent military action
as obligated by the PA's actions and intentions.

5. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz will
decide to approve actions against targets among the terrorist organizations and
the PA according to the recommendations of the security establishment.

6. Contacts will continue with the international community in order to maintain
the international pressure on the PA leadership with the
objectiveof bringing about Cpl. Shalit's release.

7. Prime Minister Olmert's Media Adviser Asaf Shariv will coordinate
the media and the information campaign regarding both Cpl. Shalit's
abduction and actions designed to bring about his release (the Prime Minister's
Office, the Foreign Ministry, the Defense Ministry, the IDF and the security


Soldier kidnapped

Military sources say Corporal Gilad Shalit's bloodstained bulletproof vest was
found not far from the scene of the attack.
He was apparently wounded in the chest, and abducted by the Palestinian gunmen
who carried out the attack. The head of IDF Manpower, Major-General Eliezer
Stern, met his family in Mitzpeh Hila, and told them that Gilad had walked
against his will at the site of the incident.

Chief-of-staff Dan Halutz said that to the best of the army's knowledge, Shalit
is believed to be wounded but alive. Halutz told reporters that Hamas bears
responsibility for his fate, and the IDF is doing everything necessary via the
appropriate channels to bring about the soldier's release.
In response to questions, Halutz said that the army was unaware of the existence
of the tunnel used by the Palestinian gunmen to attack the outpost.

In addition to the missing soldier and the two IDF fatalities, six other
soldiers were wounded in the attack. One was listed in moderate condition, one
in light-to-moderate condition, and the others were lightly wounded.

The head of the Gaza battalion, Brigadier-General Aviv Cochavi, said that in the
pre-dawn attack, eight Palestinian gunmen reached the post through a 300-meter
tunnel dug under the border. The gunmen then split into three squads -- one
firing an anti-tank missile and grenades at an IDF tank, killing two soldiers. A
second squad fired a missile at the IDF observation post at Kerem Shalom. And a
third group blew up an armored personnel carrier, which was empty at the time.

IDF troops killed two of the gunmen in the ensuing clash. Palestinians said the
six other cell members returned safely to Gaza. Hours after the initial
infiltration, heavy IDF fire continue in the area as troops carried out searches
for the missing soldier. Soldiers entered Palestinian terroritory in the
southern Gaza Strip, where forces demolished several structures. An alert was
declared in the nearby Israeli communities of Kerem Shalom and Sufa. And the
border crossings to Gaza were closed.

Several armed groups claimed responsibility for the attack, including the
Popular Resistance Committees, which said members of the Hamas military wing and
a previously unknown group called the Islamic Army also took part. The armed
groups said the operation was in response to Israel's assassination this month
of Popular Resistance committees leader Jamal Abu Samhadana and air strikes
targetting Kassam rocket-launching cells in Gaza. Palestinian sources told a Kol
Yisrael reporter that the Damascus-based senior Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal
authorized the attack. The Hamas government said it had no information on the
kidnapped soldier, but urged any group holding him to treat him well. A Hamas
spokesman, speaking in Hebrew, also urged Israel not to move toward an
escalation of the situation.

The kidnapped soldier, Corporal Gilad Shalit, was the first to be seized by
Palestinians since the abduction of Corporal Nachshon Waxman, an American
Israeli who was also 19, in 1994. Waxman was killed along with three kidnappers
when IDF commandos stormed the safe house in which he was being held. Armed
groups have in the past captured soldiers, dead or alive, as bargaining chips
for the release of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.

Israel Radio 25.06.2006 21:41


Names of Two IDF Soldiers Killed Released
(Communicated by IDF Spokesperson)

The names of the two soldiers killed today are:

Lt. Hanan Barak, 20, from Arad and St.-Sgt. Pavel Slotsker, also 20, from

Lt. Barak will be buried at 8:00 p.m. Sunday night in Arad. The time of St.
Slotsker's funeral has not yet been released.


Two IDF soldiers killed, four wounded, and one missing in attack on army outpost

Two IDF soldiers were killed, four troops were wounded and one soldier
was missing Sunday in a coordinated attack by armed Palestinian groups
on an army post near the Kerem Shalom border crossing between Israel
and the southern Gaza Strip.

The condition of the missing soldier was not immediately known, and an
army search team entered Palestinian territory in the southern Gaza
Strip to look for him.

The Popular Resistance Committees claimed responsibility for the
attack, saying members of the Hamas military wing and a previously
unknown group called the Islamic Army, also participated. The armed
groups said the operation was in response to Israel's assassination
this month of Popular Resistance Committees leader Jamal Abu Samhadana
and air strikes aimed at Kassam rocket launching cells. Palestinian
sources told a Kol Yisrael reporter that the attack had been
authorized by the Damascus-based senior Hamas official Khaled Mashal.

In the pre-dawn raid, at least eight gunmen reached the IDF post
through a tunnel dug under the border. The gunmen split into three
squads, one of them firing an anti-tank missile at an Israeli tank. A
second squad fired a similar missile at the IDF observation tower in
the area. A third group blew up an armored personnel carrier, which
was empty at the time.

Two IDF troops were killed in the attack, and four others were
wounded, one seriously and one moderately. The two others were lightly
hurt. It was not immediately clear whether the missing soldier was
wounded or dead.

At least two Palestinians was killed in the raid. In the Gaza Strip,
the Hamas military wing said that six of the cell members had returned
safely to Gaza. It said the two gunmen killed belonged to the Hamas
military wing and the Islamic Army.

Hours after the initial infiltration, heavy IDF fire was continuing in
the area as troops carried out searches for additional terrorists. An
Israeli search team entered the southern part of the Gaza Strip to
look for the missing soldier.

An alert was declared in the nearby Israeli communities of Kerem
Shalom and Sufa, where residents were ordered to remain in the
community. The border crossings to Gaza and Egypt were closed.

The strike came days after Israel warned that terrorists were planning
an attack on the area. The alert caused the Gaza-Egypt border to be
shut down for several days last week.

Israel Radio 25.06.2006 13:41


"The soldier is alive" says IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz

IDF chief of staff says abducted soldier alive,2506,L-3266818,00.html

Soldier: Terrorists fired some 20 missiles at post,2506,L-3266979,00.html


Posted by Dr. Mike Cohen


Security Cabinet Delays IDF Retaliation

The ministerial security cabinet has authorized the prime minister and defense
minister to decide on the timing of a military retaliation. However, at this
point it was decided to focus on gathering intelligence on the whereabouts of
abducted soldier Corporal Gilad Shalit.

The US is putting heavy pressure on Palestinan Authority leader
Mahmoud Abbas to locate Shalit and see to his release. In the
meantime, the IDF is preparing for a large scale military operation.

Minister Benyamin Ben Eleazer said that the attack is an escalation of the
conflict. Minister Shaul Mofaz told the meeting that the IDF
should have retalitated against earlier attacks. Ministers Herzog and
Yishai believe that right now all efforts must be focussed on
gathering intelligence as to the whereabouts of the abducted soldlier
and free him.

Prime Minister Olmert asked the ministers to enable the return of
Gilad Shalit before any other decisions are made.

Israel Radio 25.06.2006 21:44


Al-Aksa claims biological, chemical capabilities
Khaled Abu Toameh, THE JERUSALEM POST Jun. 25, 2006

The Aksa Martyrs' Brigades group announced on Sunday that it its
members have succeeded in manufacturing chemical and biological
weapons to be used against Israel.

In a leaflet distributed in the Gaza Strip, the group, which belongs
to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah party, said
the weapons were the result of an effort that has lasted for three

The statment was a response to an Israeli Security Cabinet decision to
give the IDF the green light to prepare all the forces necessary for a
military operation against Gaza terror cells.

As of 9:00 p.m. a large contingency of Golani and Givati Brigade
infantry troops, along with elite units, were amassing on the Israeli
side of the Gaza security fence for a possible ground operation there
to rescue kidnapped soldier Cpl. Gilad Shalit.

According to the statement, the first of its kind, the group managed
to manufacture and develop at least 20 different types of biological
and chemical weapons.

The group said its members would not hesitate to add the new weapons
to long-range rockets that are being fired at Israeli communities
almost every day. It also threatened to use the weapons against IDF
soldiers if Israel carried out its threats to invade the Gaza Strip.

"We want to tell [Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert and [Defense Minister
Amir] Peretz that your threats don't frighten us," the leaflet said.
"We will surprise you with our new weapons the moment the first
soldier sets his foot in the Gaza Strip."


Suggested Reading: Will There Be a Palestinian Civil War? - Pinhas Inbari

The full text of the National Conciliation Document of the Prisoners

Prisoners' Document: Peace Plan or "Phased Plan"?


Posted by Dr. Mike Cohen