Jerusalem – Amnon Rosenberg, 51, father of three, was killed and three wounded Thursday morning when a mortar fired from northern Gaza hit a manufacturing facility of the Nirlat Group on Kibbutz Nir Oz in the western Negev.
The mortar shell crashed into the kibbutz factory, claiming the life of Mr. Rosenberg, a member of the kibbutz since 1982.
Five other employees sustained shrapnel wounds and were evacuated to the Soroka Hospital in Beersheba for treatment.
Hamas, in a statement issued on its official Web site, at ww.alqassam.ps, issued a statement that its “Qassam Brigades launched a mortar shell at Nir Oz settlement” and that a “Zionist settler was killed.”
An IDF helicopter hit a Palestinian rocket launcher as he was attempting to fire another Qassam toward the western Negev region.
Abbas Reaches Out To Hamas
Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, with whom the Israeli government is conducting intense negotiations, reached out to Hamas on Wednesday, calling for renewed dialogue. Referring to the latest attempt to bridge the rift with Hamas, Mr. Abbas called for “a national dialogue … to end the internal division that harms our people.” In Gaza, Hamas spokesman Taher Nunu commended the call for talks. “We welcome this call by the President Abbas to launch a national dialogue, and we consider it a positive step,” he said.
For more than a year, Mr. Abbas had insisted he would talk to Hamas once it relinquished control of Gaza.
The premise for Israel and the U.S. allowing Mr. Abbas to arm his troops was an explicit understanding that Mr. Abbas would engage in military operations to crush Hamas. Instead, Mr. Abbas and Hamas are aligning themselves against Israel.
Israeli Arab University Students Turn To Radical Islam
The “Akra” student movement, affiliated with the Israeli Radical Islamic Movement, won the elections at the Israel Arab Student Union at Tel Aviv University after receiving about half of the votes cast.
This was the first time it ran at this university and joins the achievements in elections to Arab student unions in other universities. In the elections two months ago at Hebrew University, the “Rasala” party, made up of activists from the Islamic Movement, won seven out of 17 seats on the Arab Student Union. In Haifa, the chairman of the Akra party, Muadj Khatib, won as leader of the Arab Student Union after his party won five seats.
Bishara Believed To Be Recruiting For Hezbollah
Israeli Intelligence believes that Azmi Bishara, the former Israeli Arab Member of Knesset who defected last year, has been involved in recruiting activists into Hezbollah ranks.
This intelligence assessment was cited in a letter sent by Raz Nizari, an aide to the attorney general, to Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, which is funded by the Washington-based New Israel Fund, a group organized by Jewish Americans.
Mr. Nizari wrote that Mr. Bishara was wanted for questioning in light of his ties with Hezbollah. “According to the information in the possession of Israeli Intelligence Services, Bishara currently has ties with elements that are hostile to the state of Israel,” he wrote.
Israeli intelligence officials assessed that Mr. Bishara’s talks with people in Israel might be exploited to promote hostile purposes, including the recruitment of activists into Hezbollah ranks and the solicitation of other illegal activity.
Israeli Arab Parliamentarian Jamal Zahalka, chairman of the Balad Knesset faction, responded angrily to Mr. Nizari’s letter: “We will continue our relationship with Bishara. The allegation as if he constitutes a threat to Israel’s security is a desperate attempt at intimidation.”
David Bedein can be reached at Media@actcom.co.il. His Web site is www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com
©The Bulletin 2008