Tonight, Israel is on the brink of launching a ground attack into Gaza to destroy enemy positions being used to launch rocket attacks into Israel. Today, a rocket attack was launched against Jerusalem itself, the first time since 1970 that Jerusalem has been targeted. Israel is calling up 75,000 reserve troops to prepare for a possible ground offensive into Gaza:
NEW YORK TIMES: Emboldened by displays of Egyptian solidarity and undeterred by Israel’s advanced aerial firepower, Palestinian militants under siege in Gaza broadened their rocket targets on Friday, aiming at the holy city of Jerusalem for the first time, sending a second volley screeching toward Tel Aviv and pushing the Israelis closer to a ground invasion.
Israel’s government more than doubled the number of army reservists it could call to combat if needed in the increasingly lethal showdown with Gaza’s Hamas fighters and their affiliates, after they fired more than 700 rockets into southern Israel over the last year. The escalation has raised fears of a new chapter of war in the intractable Arab-Israeli conflict.
The Israeli military closed some roads adjacent to Gaza in anticipation of a possible infantry move into the territory, which would be the first Israeli military presence on the ground in Gaza since the three-week invasion of 2008-2009. The Israeli military chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, went south to brief regular forces and reservists.
“We are here tonight on the eve of a possible ground operation,” he said. . . . Read More
WH: Prime Minister Netanyahu called the President today to provide an update on the situation in Israel and Gaza.— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) November 16, 2012
What Barack Obama glowingly called “Arab Spring” is about to become a very long dark night of Winter for millions of Egyptians.
Here is video of Foreign Policy expert James Jatras talking about the rapid movement of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood President, Mohammed Moris, to consolidate power and move the nation toward Islamization. Jatras said their ultimate goal should come as no surprise to anyone – “strict enforcement of Sharia and re-creation of the Caliphate.” The Muslim Brotherhood has called for “Jihad to recapture Jerusalem,” and Morsi has been silent in response to that call.
Jatras believes that ultimately Egypt will not continue to honor their Peace Treaty with Israel as it pursues taking Jerusalem away from the Israelis.
Here is Gov. Mitt Romney during an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer saying he recognizes Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel. He also said he would be willing to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jersualem if that lines up with the desire of the Israeli Government.
During his outstanding speech in Jerusalem today, Gov. Mitt Romney said what President Barack Obama’s Press Secretary Jay Carney was unwilling to say the other day – that Jerusalem is the Capital of Israel.
Here is complete video of Gov. Mitt Romney delivering a strong speech in Jerusalem in support of Israel. Romney plainly called out Iran as a threat to the continued existence of Israel, and said “any and all means necessary” should be used to prevent Iran from obtaining Nuclear Weapons. Romney said the U.S. will always stand strong with Israel, and warned Iran is watching to see “who will object and who will look away” from their threats against Israel.
More Jay Carney today at the White House. This time he’s asked point blank what the Obama Adminstration considers to be the Capital of Israel. Carney absolutely refuses to say! He only will say, “Our position has not changed.” The U.S. Embassy is in Tel Aviv, but Israel recognizes Jerusalem as their Capital.
Back in 2008 when he was running for President, Barack Obama was far less shifty in his answer. He just came out and said “Jerusalem will remain the Capital of Israel and it must remain undivided.” Jay Carney was not willing to say that today.
Statement by the President on Bombing in Jerusalem
“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the bombing in Jerusalem today, as well as the rockets and mortars fired from Gaza in recent days. Together with the American people, I offer my deepest condolences for those injured or killed. There is never any possible justification for terrorism. The United States calls on the groups responsible to end these attacks at once and we underscore that Israel, like all nations, has a right to self-defense. We also express our deepest condolences for the deaths of Palestinian civilians in Gaza yesterday. We stress the importance of calm and urge all parties to do everything in their power to prevent further violence and civilian casualties.”
H/t: Weasel Zippers
UPDATED 2:40 PM ET: Added a more recent report that gives additional details on the bombing. While the report does not say it, I have seen other reports that indicate 1 person has been killed in the bombing.
A bomb has exploded near a Jerusalem bus stop today, reportedly injuring at least 25 people – some of them seriously. Initial reports that it was a suicide bomb are now unclear, with later reports saying it was a bomb planted near a bus stop. More as details emerge. . . .