Gazans renew fire; Hamas gathers intel

Posted: May 11, 2010 by Jonathan Boyko in Gaza, Hamas, IDF, Israel, Palestinians, Terrorism

IAF Apache assault helicopter firing in Gaza As Gazans renewed fire yesterday, by launching a Qassam rocket into Israeli city of Ashqelon, the IAF retaliated by bombing tunnels on Gaza-Egypt border:

Israeli aircraft attacked two targets in south Gaza late Sunday night in response to the firing of a Qassam rocket Saturday evening towards the western Negev region.

The army said hits were identified, but there were no reports of casualties.

Residents of Rafah reported hearing loud explosions near the underground smuggling tunnels situated along the Strip’s border with Egypt.

"The IDF holds Hamas solely responsible for what goes on in Gaza," the Israeli army said in a statement.

(Ynet)

IN THE MEANWHILE, Hamas authorities took further steps to both fight the growing resentment in Gaza, gather some intelligence on the Israelis and plug a few leaks:

After executing two Gaza residents last month, the Hamas government on Sunday announced a period of amnesty for Palestinians "who have collaborated with Israeli security forces" during which they can turn themselves in exchange for a pardon.

"We took the step after the two collaborators were executed after being found guilty. This is to ensure that all those who betrayed their people and homeland get on the right track. We know the malignant tricks Israel uses to blackmail collaborators and trick them," he added.

For the next two months, Gaza police stations and security service headquarters will be open 24 hours, Al-Ghussein was quoted by the Ma’an News Agency as saying. Those "who want to announce their repentance," he said, should go to their clan sheikhs and other local officials to coordinate with police and security services.

(Ynet)

It is still unclear whether the offer would eventually lead to mass execution or maybe Hamas officials are sincere in their offer. One thing is clear: feeling the pinch, Hamas wants to plug holes in its leaky structure. It also wants to find out as much information as possible regarding the Israeli Shin Bet (Internal Security Service). The ISS made significant progress in past two decades, gathering hundreds of agents and knowing every move of Palestinian officials and terror leaders. Hamas’ Ismail Haniyeh understands the next round vis-a-vis Israel could be near – within two years – thus he does his best to give Israel as little information as possible, while learning of ISS’ operational advantages.

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