Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip fired more than 30 rockets and mortars — with some Israeli media outlets reporting over 50 rockets — into southern Israel early Monday morning, causing damage to a residential building. Most of the shells landed in open areas and there were no injuries reported. However, one of the rockets landed in a petting zoo, killing two goats and wounding nine other goats, according to a Maariv report.Though we have not yet seen the source for the claim, Times of Israel adds that Hamas has taken responsibility for at least some of today's attacks and says it will hit back at Israel whenever Israel strikes at targets in Gaza. That's a reference to the IAF hitting two terrorists in an air strike on Sunday, killing one of them and wounding the other.
Channel 10 quoted a military official in the Southern Command as saying that the firing of such large numbers of rockets was made possible by the use of sophisticated launchers capable of shooting several rockets at once. According to the report, the launchers were remotely operated, making it unnecessary for the launchers to be present at the site and allowing them to remain hidden from the Israeli military’s sight.
Residents of the Eshkol Regional Council were instructed to remain in their safe rooms or shelters. After several hours, the IDF said the area’s residents could leave their shelters, but advised they should remain 15 seconds away from a secure area.
The latest exchange of fire between Israel and the Gaza Strip, according to some officials the most serious flare-up in months along that border, came after an Israeli Air Force strike in the Gaza Strip targeted a motorcycle bearing what the IDF said were two Palestinian terrorists, badly injuring both of them. Palestinian sources said one of the two subsequently died of his injuries... Gaza-based terrorists have fired over 500 rockets and mortars at nearby Israeli towns and kibbutzim since the beginning of 2012.
The last of the major Jewish festival days (Simchat Torah) of the High Holyday season ended in the past half hour, and we will be taking time later tonight to fill in some of the missing details here.