10:42 PM Family in Kiryat Shmona stuck without infant formula/"materna". If you live in the area and have extra, please call 1220 from any Israeli cellphone provider. (Via rotter.net)
10:39 PM Two announcements from the IDF spokesman:
1. A little while ago, Hizbolla fired rockets at Israel -- and rocket impacts were located in the Western Galilee
2. In the continuing war against the Hizbolla, in the past hours, the IAF bombed 12 roads connecting Syria and Lebanon to prevent the transport of wepaons and terrorists from Syria. 52 targets were bombed today, including a vehicle for launching Katyusha rockets in the city of Zur (Tyre).
10:38 PM What weapons do the Hizbolla have? Here's one analysis:
Hizbollah's Iranian Rocket Force
July 18, 2006: It's been no secret that, for years, Iran has been shipping, through Syria, thousands of unguided rockets to Hizbollah in Lebanon. As far back as 2001, there were reports of 240mm Fadjr rockets arriving in Hizbollah controlled territory in southern Lebanon. Both 240mm and 333mm Fadjr rockets are normally mounted on modified Mercedes-Benz 2624 15 ton trucks (10 wheels on 6 axles). There are either twelve 240mm (900 pound) rockets or four 333mm (one ton) rockets. About a third of the weight of rockets like this are the explosive charge in the warhead. The 240mm rocket has a range of 43 kilometers, the 333mm one, 75 kilometers. The Fadjr rockets brought into Lebanon are believed to have come individually, to be fired from locally built launchers. If enough care were taken in the construction of these launchers, the Fadjrs stood a good chance of hitting large urban areas within Israel.
It the last five years, constant reports of Iranian rocket deliveries to Hizbollah indicate that over 10,000 such missiles were brought into southern Lebanon. Most of these rockers are the smaller 107mm and 122mm models. The B-12 is a 107mm, 42 pound, 107mm, 33 inch long, Russian designed rocket that is very popular with terrorists. This rocket has a range of about six kilometers and three pounds of explosives in its warhead. Normally fired, from a launcher, in salvoes of dozens at a time, when used individually, it is more accurate the closer it is to the target. This 107mm design has been copied by many nations, and is very popular with guerillas and terrorists because of its small size and portability.
The 122mm BM-21s weigh 150 pounds and are nine feet long. These have 45 pound warheads, but not much better accuracy than the 107mm model. However, these larger rockets have a maximum range of 20 kilometers. Again, because they are unguided, they are only effective if fired in salvos, or at large targets (like cities, or large military bases or industrial complexes.)
It is believed that fewer than a hundred of the 240mm or 333mm rockets arrived in Lebanon. There may be more of intermediate caliber weapons (160mm), but little has been said about those. Thus it appears that the majority of Hizbollah rockets are the smaller ones. This is important because Hizbollah has to hide these rockets from constant Israeli aerial and satellite surveillance. Moreover, once hostilities begin (as they have now), it's going to be difficult to move large rockets around. Even the 122mm rockets are nine feet long, and not easy to conceal. Source: Strategy Page
10:30 PM Update from a personal friend (this is totally legit)
The situation in Tzfat is desperate and there are families living with no electricity, who have absolutely no food at all! Even if they tried to buy some, most stores are closed. Ezer L'Shabbos is getting food from a supermarket on credit, but can't for much longer without paying. They also have to pay to have it delivered since most of their volunteers have left Tzfat. Sadly, the most vulnerable - large families with small children, Baali Teshuva without family support systems, are the ones left behind and are suffering. Please make checks out to Ezer L'shabbos and get them to Shloma Edelstein or drop them off in the mailbox or Pushka at Rabbi Twerski's shul (Ateres Shloime- corner of E29th & K).
You can also mail checks made out to Ezer L'Shabbos to: Tzfat Emergency Fund c/o Ordinal, 1412 Avenue M #2467, Brooklyn NY 11230.
9:50 PM Qassam Rocket falls on Levi Eshkol street in Sderot
9:20 PM Update from the Muqata:
IAF F16 jets just flew over the Muqata headed North, and I just finished watching another edition of Israel News Channels 10, 2, and 1. It's very different from CNN and FOX -- since every single story is a different aspect of the war going on. First to Haifa, then Kiryat Shmona, cut to the correspondant in Nahariya, the camera crew in the Magen David Adom underground bunker in Carmiel, and the reporter standing by in Tzefat.
After close to a week of this war, I think tonight was the most depressing as it slowly becomes obivous that this war is not going to finish for at least a few more weeks at best.
The reservists who received call up orders were all enthusiastic, and the country's Jewish population is 95% united in the war effort. The TV news reported that close to 100% of the reservists who were issued call up orders -- showed up, and the parking lots outside the army bases were full.
The residents up North are starting to feel the pressure of less food availablity, as they can't go out to stores as often to buy food, the supermarkets aren't as stocked, and food in general is not reaching all the northern communities. Elderly families are finding it difficult to obtain food in Tzefat and Nahariya. More and more residents of Haifa are leaving the city, going southwards.
I hope to provide a list of places to donate money to -- who will be trying to alleviate these problems in the coming days.
Since nightfall -- about 8:00 PM, there is a very tense quiet up north, and everyone is wondering when the next sirens will go off, where the next missiles will fall.
I'm running off to shiur now -- will be back in an hour.
6:10 PM - Muqata blog going offline for a few hours. Stay Safe.
6:04 PM Special Request via Rotter.Net
Nine year old child in Tzefat who is rather scared needs a ride down to Central Israel. If you are driving from Tzefat to central Israel in the near future and can help, please call 050-307-1719. (Note, this is a public request from rotter.net...I will be taking this message down within a few hours)
5:59 PM Since 5:00 PM, there have been over 30 Katyusha rocket strikes in the North. One confirmed fatality in Nahariya, One house completely destroyed in Kiryat Chaim.
5:57 PM Two explosions of Katyusha rockets heard in the Krayot (Haifa area)
5:56 PM Direct hit reported on house in Kiryat Chaim. No Injuries!
5:46 PM Elster reports: One of 4 Laguardia towers suffered a power outage. Though you should know that this cannot be connected to Hezbollah or Hamas (at this time) but rather to 97 degree heat.
5:44 PM Explosions of rocket's landing heard in Carmiel. Rockets confirmed hitting Avivim.
5:42 PM Channel 2 TV - Rockets land in Haifa. Air Raid Sirens in Carmiel.
5:41 PM Air Raid Sirens throughout Haifa...Katyusha rockets striking now. MDA responding.
5:37 PM Direct hit on house in Yesod HaMa'ala. Additional rockets in Maalot and Nahariya.
5:35 PM Live Update from Rock of Galilee - Nurse in Kupat Cholim
in Maalot had to duck out of the way of a Katyusha. (yikes!)
5:32 PM Reported power-outtage at LaGuardia airport in NYC. Can anyone there confirm? (Why am I reporting this?)
5:31 PM Channel 10 TV (Israel) reports that IDF ground forces are operating in South Lebanon to search and destroy Hizbolla rocket launchers (terrorists & hardware). Rockets land north of Akko.
5:24 PM Additional incoming rockets hit Tverya. Reports claim rocket hit a person directly in Nahariya(1 fatality). Additional Rocket in Nahariya directly hit a house; rescue crews searching for wounded. The house is on fire.
5:17 PM Reports of rocket strikes in Kiryat Shmona, 12 rockets have fallen in Haifa, rockets falling in Tverya, Explosion heard in Kiryat Chaim (rocket strike). Unconfirmed fatality in Nahariya.
5:14 PM Preliminary reports of wounded in Maalot as well. MDA responding
5:11 PM Reports of wounded in Nahariya, Air Raid Sirens still blaring in Haifa. Explosions heard in North Akko of incoming rockets.
4:50 PM Four rockets land in Akko. No reports of injuries.
4:45 PM Air Raid Sirens blaring throughout Akko, Haifa and the Krayot, continuing for over 20 minutes.
4:23 PM Katyusha rockets continue to rain down in the Western Galilee....air raid sirens continuing.
4:12 PM Three katyusha rockets land in Nahariya.
4:08 PM Explosion heard in Carmiel.
3:39 PM Estimates that 30% of Haifa's residents have left the city, with Nahariya closer to 90%.
2:52 PM Fire breaks out near Shlomi (Galil) as a result of rocket attack.
2:29 PM NewsFirstClass website published news 15 hours after it first appears on the Muqata blog special edition (10:41 PM yesterday)-- that 2 IDF soldiers are reportedly held in Iranian Embassy in Beirut. I'm not sure I believe the report.
2:20 PM Female IDF soldier stabbed down south in Mitzpeh Ramon, Weapon stolen. Arab attacker apprehended. story here (Soldier is in good condition)
2:16 PM As the IDF gives out "tzav-8" (emergency reserve call-up orders) to 3 infantry battalions (story here), I'm reminded of the song..."These Boots were made for Walking"
2:01 PM Jerusalem Museum allowing free admissions to all Northern Residents. (you just GOT to love Israel in the war-time)
1:50 PM: 7 Rockets land in Tzefat. No injuries.
1:42 PM: Israel's National Firefighter Department: Residents are ordered to turn off gas connections during attacks (or while running to bomb shelters) to prevent needless gas-related explosions.
1:40 PM: Air Raid sirens in Teverya.
1:27 PM Unexploded Katyusha rocket being dealt with my IDF sappers in Haifa.
1:25 PM Rocket lands at Meiron highway interchange.
1:07 PM Good News website getting lots of attention around Israel. This is the one webpage we keep waiting to happen...(satire of YNET in Hebrew...) Translated headlines:
Feature Story: Nasralla Killed in Beriut
- Additional Stories: 3 kidnapped soldiers return home safely.
- Iraninan PM Achmadjimdehad -- has a stroke and dies
- Israeli stock markets boom.
- Due to European Pressure on Iran: Rod Arad to be freed
- Mohammad Deif currently undergoing "investigation" in Shin Bet's basement.
- US forces capture Iranian Parliment
- Israeli scientists find cure for AIDS
- National Health Care medication "basket" -- "Never been Bigger"
- Poll: 98% of Israelis happy with life here.
- Israeli Films blockbusters around the world.
- Green Day and Kelly Clarkson to come to Israel next week
- Channel One TV sold -- to be commercial station.
- Yahoo & Google invest in Israel
- Microsoft opening additional development facility in Israel
- Israeli Cellphone providers reducing rates
- Unemployment down another 45,000 workers.
And more...we can dream, can't we? :)
(Reminder -- the above are not real news stories...please don't quote me saying "Jameel wrote...Nasralla's dead" (well, not yet anyway)
1:02 PM Roundup of past 14 minutes:
Rocket strikes Israel railroad trainyard in Haifa...again (Channel 2 TV)
Rocket strikes "Vered HaGalil" Chocolate factory in Tzefat (Channel 1 TV) [bastards!]
Rocket strike in Haifa -- one wounded by smoke inhalation, 3 in shell shock.
Rocket strike in Haifa causes fire in empty field.
12:48 PM Rocket strikes fuel tank in Tzefat industrial area.
12:45 PM Four explosions heard in Hafia area...
12:42 PM Air Raid Sirens in Haifa
12:32 PM Air Raid sirens in Tiverya (Tibereas)
12:26 PM Additional rocket lands in Tzefat -- No reports of injuries.
12:25 PM Four Katyusha rockets land in Tzefat.
11:00 AM: What was fired at Israel yesterday? The Iranian made "Zelzal" (Earthquake) Missile. Well...it was more like "mislaunched".
Zelzal Missile on display in Iran:
Hizbolla has dozens of these Iranian rockets...and they are aimed at Israel. Luckily, Israel's airforce targted a launch truck of these yesterday -- they were all destroyed except for one which mislaunched as a result, blowing itself up in midair and it's flaming wreckage landed in Beirut.
For the rocket and missile affecinados out there (like Treppenwitz) -- a bit about it:
That's a lot more than I really want to know. Here's to praying and hoping that the IAF can knock these out before they get launched.
The Zelzal missiles are short-range, road-mobile, solid-propellant systems, of which very little is known. The first evidence of their existence came from a number of reports in 1996 which indicated that Iran had three solid propellant missile development programs, called the Zelzal-1, Zelzal-2 and Zelzal-3. However, the liquid-fueled Shahab-3 is now believed to have been designated as the Zelzel-3, which contradicts previous reports.
The Zelzal missiles are most likely unguided or use a rudimentary inertial system. They have ranges varying from 150 to 400 km (93 to 249 miles) and all carry a 600 kg payload. The missile is probably intended as a cheap alternative to importing better systems from China and will replace many of the Scuds that Iran has used against Iraq. The complete lack of a guidance system makes the system only useful as an artillery system to bombard a general area or a large target. As there is no guidance system, the angle and direction of launch will determine the ability of the missile to fly straight, and thus its accuracy. When properly launched, the Zelzal is accurate within several kilometers of its target. Source: MissileThreat
10:52 AM: 70 families from the northern city of Carmiel arriving in Gush Etzion today to be hosted there.
10:18 AM: Palestinians Fire 2 Qassam rockets at Sderot in Southern Israel from Beit Hanoun in the Northern Gaza strip. IDF returning fire with artillery.
10:09 AM Last night, 30 Israelis were wounded by Hizbolla Katyuzha rockets in Northern Israel -- one moderately, and the rest lightly. Rockets landed all over the north including; Rosh HaNikara, Nahariya, Rosh Pina, Afula, Tzefat, Haifa, Beit Hilell and others.
10:00 AM Good Morning Blogworld!
Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael