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October 5, 2016 12:40 pm

Report: Terrorized Israeli Children Cowered Under Desks, Recited Psalms, as Qassam Rocket From Gaza Struck Near Sderot School

avatar by Ruthie Blum

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The aftermath of the rocket-landing in Sderot on Wednesday, Oct. 5. Photo: Israel Police.

The aftermath of the rocket attack in Sderot on Wednesday, Oct. 5. Photo: Israel Police.

Hundreds of terrorized Israeli children recited psalms as they cowered under their desks on Wednesday morning, when a rocket fired from Gaza landed near their school, the Hebrew news site nrg reported.

According to the report, the rocket exploded in a residential neighborhood in the southern city of Sderot — and the only lucky thing about the otherwise traumatic incident was that it occurred just after the kids had returned to their classrooms following their 10 am snack break. In addition, nrg said, the children were well-versed in what to do in the event of such an attack, as they had undergone regular drills in their school, whose walls are fortified.

In the immediate aftermath of the rocket attack — which caused damage to buildings and cars in the vicinity, and sent a number of people to the nearby hospital to be treated for shock — educational psychologists went from room to room and spoke to the children about what had just happened. Some parents came to take their kids home before the end of the school day, the first after the Rosh Hashanah holiday.

One fourth-grader said, “Everyone was nervous. We all said the Shema prayer [‘Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one’].”

A mother whose three children all attend the school said, “It’s a routine that repeats itself, and each time it is difficult. I work outside of the city, and I immediately phoned to make sure everyone was all right.”

Her daughter, in sixth grade, recounted the terrifying moments of the attack. “I didn’t hear the siren,” she said. “Only a loud boom. I was really worried about my younger siblings. After that, we went outside and smelled burning. We were told that a Qassam had fallen next to the school.”

Another parent told nrg that her two kids called her up and were crying hysterically, but she had trouble getting to the school quickly, due to the traffic and many security vehicles.

One adult resident of Sderot, whose window exploded from the impact of the explosion, said he had been asleep at the time of the attack and therefore didn’t make it to the bomb shelter in time. “I lay on the floor, and then heard the very loud whistle of the rocket flying, and then it struck.”

The neighborhood is now attempting to return to its daily routine, nrg said, but residents — who have been through this many times before — are under no illusions about life going on in a normal fashion as long as attacks from Gaza loom.

In response to the rocket attack — in which a Qassam hit approximately 100 meters (329 feet) from the school and close to the home of Sderot Mayor Alon Davidi, the IDF retaliated by attacking targets in Gaza.

According to Reuters, a previously unknown group, “The Grandchildren of the Followers of the Prophet” — which nrg said is affiliated with ISIS — claimed responsibility for the attack.

The head of Israel’s office of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories said the terrorist group claimed the fire from Gaza was part of the ongoing jihad against the Jews, as well as a response to Thursday’s arrest by Hamas of four Salafist operatives in Rafah and another one in Gaza a few days later.

This was the latest rocket attack in what has become sporadic fire from the Gaza Strip since the end of Operation Protective Edge, Israel’s war against Hamas in the summer of 2014. The previous incident of this nature occurred on August 21.

Watch the rocket strike below:

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  • RobGinChicago

    Any confirmation of other reports that this was the first rocket to strike Israel that utilized a GPS system for tracking/guidance?

  • No Jew has the right to yield the rights of the Jewish People in Israel –
    David Ben Gurion
    (David Ben-Gurion was the first Prime Minister of Israel and widely hailed as the State’s main founder).
    “No Jew is entitled to give up the right of establishing [i.e. settling] the Jewish Nation in all of the Land of Israel. No Jewish body has such power. Not even all the Jews alive today [i.e. the entire Jewish People] have the power to cede any part of the country or homeland whatsoever. This is a right vouchsafed or reserved for the Jewish Nation throughout all generations. This right cannot be lost or expropriated under any condition or circumstance. Even if at some particular time, there are those who declare that they are relinquishing this right, they have no power nor competence to deprive coming generations of this right. The Jewish nation is neither bound nor governed by such a waiver or renunciation. Our right to the whole of this country is valid, in force and endures forever. And until the Final Redemption has come, we will not budge from this historic right.”
    at the Basle Session of the 20th Zionist Congress at Zurich (1937)
    “No country in the world exists today by virtue of its ‘right’.
    All countries exist today by virtue of their ability to defend themselves against those who seek their destruction.”

  • The Arab-Palestinian Terror and Violence must be stopped at all costs, no holds barred and zero tolerance r4
    Israel and the Jewish people must stand United against the evil terror and violence. This is no time to be selfish and score political points on the dead bodies of Jewish souls.
    The situation today with terror attacks on a daily basis is no different than July 2014 when Hamas – a recognized terrorist organization firing thousands of missiles against Israel’s population centers, which it keeps sporadic firing until today October 2016. Mahmoud Abbas’s organization the Fattah is no different, they just conceal their activities, while they incite violence.
    These are very difficult days. The escalating Arab violence and attack after attack carried out by Arab savage knife wielders and inhuman vehicular use and knifing as a weapon of terror are again putting to a test the spiritual strength and resolve of the Israeli people. Our enemies, both foreign and domestic, should know that we will never lose our will to live as a free people in our homeland, NEVER AGAIN, because we have no other home in the world. Israel is the only Jewish country for over 4000 years. We must defend it no matter what, damn the torpedoes, no holds barred and zero tolerance.
    The Arab countries have terrorized and expelled over a million Jewish families and their children who now reside in Israel. Jews who are not willing to grasp a sword will not be able to hold onto life, we will not let a Holocaust decimate us. We will not give up and we will not capitulate or cower to terror, threats and intimidation, because this is our mission in life. Weakness is not leadership and endless fruitless concessions that increase terror and violence do not constitute a vision.
    While we preach and pursue peace and coexistence, the Arabs are pursuing terror, death and violence. They, the Arabs clearly state in no ambiguous terms that they want to kill the Jews and destroy Israel.
    The Israeli government must send a clear and determined message and act with all the force necessary to put the murderous violence to a halt. This is war, and we have no choice but to win at all costs, if we want to live and prosper. “Let us all as a unified nation go up at once, and possess it; for we are well equipped and able to overcome it.”
    We have turned a desert into a flourishing country; we can and will defend our homeland at all costs.
    Chanukah, the holiday celebrating the Liberation of Jerusalem is a few months away. Chanukah is a time of renewal. Significantly outnumbered, the Maccabee’s succeeded against great odds by combining strategy, devotion to God and a willingness to sacrifice themselves in their unified battle against both assimilation and religious persecution. They returned to rededicate the ransacked and desecrated temple in Jerusalem with renewed faith and hope for the future. Today is no different, The Jewish nation is fighting for its survival, let us follow in the footsteps of our ancestors and with faith and perseverance we shall triumph.

  • marlene

    Where’s the video?