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Monday, July 24, 2006

New Updates: Day 13

7:36 PM: The IDF has confirmed that the 2 pilots that were involved in the helicopter crash near Tzfat this morning have died. The helicopter crashed after it electrical lines. The families have been notified, but the names of the pilots have not yet been released for publication.

Many pets were unfortunately abandoned as residents of Carmiel left the city to avoid Katyusha attacks. The organization, Carmiel Chai has taken up the job of locating the animals and ensuring their survival. The city of Carmiel is supporting this operation.

In their efforts to destroy terrorists' abilities to launch rockets from Gaza, the IDF destroyed a rocket warehouse run by Islamic Jihad.

7:13 PM: Since the start of fighting 13 days ago, more than 2,500 Katyusha rockets have been fired into Israel.

More than 100 Katyushas have landed in northern Israel since the start of the day.

6:32 PM: 2 people were injured after Katyusha rockets landed in Maalot. They are listed as being in serious and moderate conditions, respectively. 3 other people were wounded lightly.

The French FM that was sent to Israel was forced to take shelter as he was about to leave Haifa, as air raid sirens went off to signal an incoming Katyusha attack.

The fires that were set off by Katyusha rockets landing in the Kiryat Shmona are have already burned 2000 dunam of land as fire-fighters work dilligently to put them out.

5:39 PM: An Israeli apache helicopter crashed at the border. The IDF is investigating whether the helicopter was struck by a rocket. There are reported injuries, but nothing further.

Katyushas have fallen in Tiberias, Aco, Nahariya, and Kiryat Shmona. No reported serious injuries.

The rockets that fell in Kiryat Shmona have cause several fires to break out in the area. Fire-fighters are working to put them out.

There are heavy firefights going in on southern Lebanon between Hezbollah and IDF.

US Secretary of State Rice is expected to arrive in Jerusalem tonight, after spending the day in Lebanon.

4:25 PM: Katyushas have and continue to fall in the north. Among them, Kiryat Shmona, Aco, Nahariya, and Haifa. No reports of injuries.

3:24 PM: According to reports, 2 pilots and several other soldiers were wounded when a helicopter crashed about an hour and a half ago. There are no reports of fatalities.

One of Hezbollah's leaders said that they are using anti-tank weapons to fight off Israeli troops. He said, We have less destructive weapons than the enemy, but they have a larger impact. We have promised there would be surprises.” (*Ummm... this is not a surprise. Desperation mode... Ya think?!?*)

Malaysia is attempting to arrange an Islamic Conference to discuss the crisis in Lebanon.

At 11:00 AM tomorrow morning, the Knesset will hold a special session to update the entire cabinet on the security and policital situation.

IDF forces have killed at least 3 terrorists in Gaza a short while ago. They were hiding in a house as they fired at troops. In accordance with DM Peretz's instructions, the IDF is stepping up its operation in Gaza in order to stop rocket attacks into Israel.

What's happened today so far:
Maarive On-line is reporting that another helicopter crashed near Tzfat after hitting some electric lines. There are reports of injuries, but nothing definitive yet.

US Secretary Of State Rice has arrived in Beirut just a short time ago.

The Iranian Defense Minister has come out and stated that the US is responsible for the fighting in Lebanon. He said that it is US' way of gaining control of Middle East oil. He also says this is the real reason for US interference in the Middle East, not some attempt at obtaining peace in the region.

IDF Chief of Staff Halutz confirmed intelligence that says that Hezbollah has missiles in its possession that can reach Tel-Aviv and the Gush Dan region.

Northern businesses have lost an estimated 2 billion shekels from closure and damage. The entire country is losing 200 million shekels a day because of the fighting.

5 IDF troops were lightly wounded after they took control of Bint J'Bel. The fighting in southern Lebanon and Beirut continues.

Saudi Arabia has made a cease-fire proposal for the conflict. It includes: "Israel to release convicted Arab terrorists in exchange for its kidnapped soldiers, and withdraw from Shaba Farms, an area on the border claimed by Lebanon. In addition, the Lebanese army would take control of south Lebanon, while Hizbullah forces would move further north." (*This is so stupid, I have no idea where to start. Forget it, it's pretty self-explanatory.*)

MK Yuval Steinitz (Likud) said that it's necessary for the ground forces to temporarily take control of southern Lebanon in order to protect Israeli cities. He said that this war could not be won by the Air-force alone, and this is harms the IDF deterrent capability by hesitating to use the ground forces' effectively.

In his latest public statements, Nasrallah stated that a ground incursion will not stop Hezbollah from shooting their rockets. (*We'll see...*)

Late this morning, IDF forces arrested at least 20 terrorists operating in the Judea and Samaria area.

9 soliders were lightly injured this morning during clashes with Hezbollah.

Kassams continue to fall in the Western Negev. No reporter injuries.

The US and Germany said that they would support but not actively participate in an International peace-keeping force in southern Lebanon.

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