Day Three of Gaza Op: Israelis in Bomb Shelters


JERUSALEM, Israel -- Israel entered the third day of its Operation Protective Edge. So far, its air force struck nearly 500 targets to stop the Hamas rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, millions of Israeli citizens are taking cover in bomb shelters as Hamas continues its rocket and missile bombardment out of Gaza. The terror group has fired over 200 rockets into Israel since Monday, a situation Israel's ambassador to the United States told CBN News is intolerable.

"We've got about three quarters of our population that had to go into bomb shelters," Ambassador Ron Dermer explained. "Put that in American terms and you're talking about over 200 million Americans that would have to go in bomb shelters."

"Now, what do you think the American people would want their government to do, the American military to do, if they were faced with rockets attacks from a neighboring country, where 200 million people are running into a bomb shelter?" he challenged.

CBN News Middle East Bureau Chief Chris Mitchell talked more about the Gaza rocket crisis on The 700 Club, July 10.

Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile defense system has reportedly had a success rate of near 90 percent so far in shooting down those Hamas missiles.

On Thursday, Israel continued its campaign to destroy Hamas rockets and the infrastructure to manufacture those rockets. The IDF (Israel Defense Forces) reported more than 100 underground missile launchers were hit and a number of houses used by Hamas leaders.

One senior security source said not a single Hamas brigade commander has a home to go back to.

In Gaza, more than 50 Palestinians have died so far in the conflict. Yet in its effort to avoid or at least reduce civilian casualties, Israel employs a policy of warning Gazans by phone and/or leaflets in Arabic. They call it "the knock on the door," urging residents to leave a home or area before they strike.

The leaflets also urge them not to allow their homes to be used as a cover for smuggling tunnels or weapons storage.

Hamas, on the other hand, sometimes calls people to the home as human shields -- the way they did during the last conflict in 2012.

On the diplomatic front, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called a number of world leaders and said no other government would tolerate this kind of rocket fire. Both Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said the operation will not be over quickly.

Meanwhile, more reservists are being called up as Israel prepares for a possible ground invasion.

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