|Eilat - the hotel zone|
This is not happening in a vacuum. We (but not the mainstream media) have reported on a steady shower of Qassams, Grads, mortars and other projectiles fired by the terrorists of Hamas-occupied Gaza into anything Israeli over the past few days. [They don't care what or whom they hit, damage, injure or kill. This is exactly why they qualify to be called terrorists. There is no larger strategy.]
In the past few hours, several rockets evidently originating in Egyptian-controlled Sinai were fired in the general direction of the southern Israeli holiday resort of Eilat. Two (according to the Jerusalem Post) fell into the Red Sea; two more crashed into Jordan and did real damage; one landed in the vicinity of Eilat, fortunately in an open area just north of the hotels zone.
YNet is reporting that the one that reached Jordan landed near the Intercontinental Hotel in Aqaba. AFP says, quoting Jordan's interior minister, that it was a Grad-type rocket and that it injured four people, one of them seriously. Our readers will remember that a Grad was fired into Ashkelon this past Friday, narrowly missing a high-rise apartment complex. Grads are not so common in these parts, though it seems we had better start getting used to them.
Eilat, Israel's most popular tourist city, is hardly a stranger to terror attacks though the editors at the BBC give the impression that they think otherwise. In its inimitable style, BBC World is currently reporting that "Eilat, which is a popular tourist resort, has largely been spared from rocket and other attacks."
Well, not exactly. This past April, two rockets landed in Eilat and in Aqaba which abuts it. In 2005, a rocket fired from Jordan landed next to Eilat airport and two others missed a US Navy vessel docked in the port of Aqaba. Someone claimed credit in the name of "Al-Qaida", whatever that means, but the culprits have never been conclusively identified. A Palestinian bomber killed three men working at an Eilat bakery in January 2007. Both Islamic Jihad and the al-Aqsa Martyrs (one of Arafat's enduring contributions to the culture of the Palestinian Arabs) claimed the credit for that attack.