After Rocket Salvos From Lebanon, Syria, Israel’s Northern Residents Wonder Where to Hide
by Dave Bender
An unexpected volley of rockets fired from Lebanon and Syria late Saturday had some Israeli residents wondering where to take cover, Israel’s Channel 2 News reported on Sunday.
Some 25 Israelis were treated for shock and minor injuries when rockets hit villages in the western Galilee, among them, that of Nadir Ammar.
“We were sitting in the courtyard outside our house and there was no alarm or warning,” Ammar said. “We heard the Katusha’s distinctive ‘whistle’ and immediately heard a boom that shook the entire area. Pictures fell off the walls and chairs were shaking; the children were very scared.”
While there were no serious injuries, the rockets sparked a brush fire in one area, and downed a power line in another, police said, but didn’t specify locations.
“Now, all in all, we’re fine,” Ammar said, although he, his wife and three children who suffered traumatic shock, were evacuated to Nahariya’s Western Galilee Hospital.
Many residents of Ammar’s village, which was not named by Channel 2 in order not to help terrorists’ improve targeting in possible future strikes, serve in the IDF.
The attacks came as many of the residents of Israel’s south have been fleeing rocket attacks from Gaza as Israel’s Operation Protective Edge aims to stem the threat. In recent weeks over 3500 projectiles have been fired by Gaza terrorists into Israeli cities mostly those near the coastal enclave.
“If there is an escalation in the north it would be too much, We are very experienced, having suffered 121 such attacks in the past,” Ammar said, adding that he hoped “there will be no more events like this, here, for us or the neighbors. We had a lot of injuries this time, and many families suffered traumatic shock.”
Jackie Hagian, an area resident said that although the barrage caught his family while they were sleeping, they figured something like this would happen, sooner or later.
“It was a scary night, but it’s the second time we are going through something like this in recent months. Three months ago, the alarm also sounded, and the rocket hit – just that this time it was closer.”
“Where can we run to now?” he asked rhetorically, answering his own question: “There is no safe place. We are part of the Land of Israel. We are on the frontlines, and get hammered here, too, as everywhere else,” Jackie said.
“The army did not respond this time but will respond later. Every time we took fire from Syria, the army did what it needed to do, and we trust them.”
In a number of incidents of mortar, rocket and deadly gunfire from Syrian and Lebanese areas over the past year, the IDF replied with exact artillery bombardments at the point of the outgoing fire.
The IDF said that Israel sees the Syrian regime as responsible for any shooting from its territory, and that it would bear the consequences. Likewise, Israel views the Lebanese government responsible for any firing from its land. So far, however, Israel has not responded to the two northern cross-border rocket strikes.
A Lebanese army spokesman said that military forces found and confiscated the rocket launcher used in the strike from that country, and transported it to a nearby base.