News / Middle East

Israeli Strike Kills Top Hamas Commander

People look at a wreckage of the car in which Ahmed al-Jaabari  was killed, Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
People look at a wreckage of the car in which Ahmed al-Jaabari was killed, Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
Scott Bobb
JERUSALEM — An Israeli airstrike in Gaza has killed the top military commander of Hamas with Israel warning other Hamas members not to "show their faces above ground" in the next few days.
 
An Israeli missile killed Ahmed al-Jaabari Wednesday as he drove in a car in Gaza City, shattering a tacit cease-fire that lasted less than a day. Israeli news reports say his son was also killed.
 
Who is Ahmed al-Jaabari?

  • Headed Hamas' military wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades
  • Most senior Hamas official killed in Gaza since Israel's offensive four years ago
  • Was at the top of Israel's most-wanted list
  • Israel held him responsible for all attacks from Gaza in the last decade
  • Israel blamed him for kidnapping of soldier Gilad Shalit in 2006
The attack was part of a wave of airstrikes against Islamic militants in Gaza which Palestinians say killed seven other people, including two children.
 
Israel's Shin Bet intelligence service said Jaabari was killed because of his "decade-long terrorist activity," including the kidnapping of Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit in 2006. He was one of Israel's most wanted men and is the most senior Hamas official to be killed since an Israeli invasion of Gaza four years ago.

Top commander of Hamas armed wing Al-Qassam brigades, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, front right, pictured in Cairo, Oct. 18, 2011.Top commander of Hamas armed wing Al-Qassam brigades, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, front right, pictured in Cairo, Oct. 18, 2011.
x
Top commander of Hamas armed wing Al-Qassam brigades, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, front right, pictured in Cairo, Oct. 18, 2011.
Top commander of Hamas armed wing Al-Qassam brigades, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, front right, pictured in Cairo, Oct. 18, 2011.
Exchanges of rocket fire and aerial bombardments between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza resumed Wednesday evening after the attack.

A new operation
 
The Israeli government announced that the killing is the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. Israel said it will be targeting sites in Gaza where mortars and rockets are stored.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel will keep doing everything necessary to protect its citizens, including expanding its operation in Gaza. Hamas militants frequently fire rockets into Israel from Gaza.
 
Hamas warned Israel that "the occupation has opened the gates of hell." Egypt, which borders Gaza, has recalled its ambassador to Israel and is calling for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council.
 
Television footage broadcast by Israel's government station showed Palestinian rescue workers struggling to extinguish flames engulfing a car on a Gaza street. The passenger compartment appeared to have been destroyed by the blast.
 
Gaza resident Mohammad Dawwas said the situation looks like a "war is starting in Gaza" with multiple air strikes sowing panic, people running home and a prevailing fear settling in.
 
"Airstrikes are everywhere, especially in Gaza City and the [southern and northern] Gaza Strip. People are running, going home, afraid of being injured, being shot, being hit," he said.

Ceasefire broken
 
Israel leaders and Palestinian militants in Gaza Tuesday had tacitly agreed to a cease-fire after four days of cross-border bombardments in which seven Gaza Palestinians were killed, and civilians in southern Israel were wounded.
 
Story continues below 
  • Smoke rises following Israeli air strikes in Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
  • People look at a wreckage of the car in which Ahmed al-Jaabari was killed, Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
  • Palestinians extinguish a fire after an Israeli air strike on a car carrying Hamas military chief Ahmed al-Jaabari, Gaza City November 14, 2012.
  • Palestinians surround the car carrying Ahmed al-Jaabari that was hit by an Israeli air strike, Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
  • A man holds a copy of the Koran after an Israeli air strike on a car of Hamas military chief Ahmed al-Jaabari in Gaza City, November 14, 2012.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak, visiting troops near the Gaza border on Tuesday, issued a strong warning. He said the matter has not ended and that Israel would decide how and when to act.
 
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, visiting wounded at a local hospital, had indicated the armed factions in Gaza would respect the cease-fire if Israel did.
 
Four days of cross-border rocket assaults and air strikes began Saturday when a rocket fired from Gaza struck an Israeli military vehicle near the border, wounding four soldiers.

Subsequent Israeli air attacks on Gaza killed three Palestinian fighters and four civilians.
 
Eight Israeli civilians were wounded as militants in Gaza fired more than 100 rockets into southern Israel over the following days.
 
Egyptian security officials reportedly had mediated the cease-fire.

Some Israeli officials had called for a resumption of assassinations of Hamas leaders or a military operation into Gaza in order to weaken the group that took power in Gaza five years ago.
 
Israel invaded the enclave nearly four years ago in an operation during which 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed.

You May Like

China May Be Biggest Winner From Ukraine Crisis

Missile sales, oil and gas shipments are among many areas that may drive Beijing and Moscow closer together in coming years More

Obama Faces Chaotic World, Limits of Power

Current foreign policy issues bring into focus challenges for US policymakers who are mindful of Americans' waning appetite for overseas military engagements More

SADC Meeting Lesotho Officials to Resolve Stalemate

Official says regional bloc has been engaged with leaders in Lesotho to resolve political disagreement that led to coup attempt More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ali baba from: new york
November 15, 2012 9:29 PM
Who got the blame and who got the praise ? the answer bot got the blame .hamas should not throw rocket on isreal. isreal should not attack civilan.


by: Waqas Amin Vicky
November 15, 2012 1:33 PM
My Question with obama that why he is favouring Israil all the time they are killing there innocent people,s children,s people are dieing there Why ? Now Obama once again choose I think he should stop them for killing


by: LeRoy Padmore from: Jersey City,NJ
November 15, 2012 12:36 AM
Israel as a sovereign nation has the full right and obligation to protect and defend its citizen against any aggression like any country will do.if any country or terroristic group fire rockets into Israel,Israel will do the same or much harder.Israel has to set an example,Israel has to teach them a lessen.Israel is not an occupied nation.even before may 14,1948 there has always been a nation called Israel,there has always been a people called Jews.This is the Jewish people home land,it has always been for the Jews and it will always be for the Jews.Historical Fact or true in AD 135 the Emperor Hadrian rebuild Jerusalem new wall and renamed the city Aelia Capitolina and he also renamed Judea from Judea to Palestine and he bans Jews from their own home land.(this is history) there presence of the Jewish people has always been there,there are Biblical,Koranic and Historical evidence that the Ancient home land of the Jewish people belongs to the presence day Jewish people Gen 12:1-8,God Bless Israel,Shalom Jerusalem


by: YAS from: Albany NY
November 14, 2012 8:25 PM
JNR ; If these rockets have been falling on your backyard in Wisconsin your attitude will be far different.


by: JNR from: Wisconsin, USA
November 14, 2012 5:12 PM
JKF; Israelis of course have a right to defend themselves regardless of this, but I'd like to point something out. These are mostly obsolete artillery rockets and mortars. You can "aim" in a general direction, but they are not accurate and the militants firing them have not been trained in their use. So to say they are being aimed at specific targets is giving their capabilities too much credit. The Palestinians have no political or military power to resist the Israeli occupation(and that is what it will always be to the Palestinians, regardless of what us westerners think.) So they can only struggle like trapped rats with whatever is available to them.

Also, as far as I've read, those 150 jerry-rigged old rockets killed exactly 0 people (in fact, I don't remember ever hearing of one of these rockets killing someone); Israel's retaliatory strikes killed several Palestinian civilians(and they pretty much always do.)


by: Jim Read from: Michigan
November 14, 2012 5:10 PM
Sensi....If hamas aren't the ones launching the rockets into Israel then why are they taking the credit for it and saying they are the ones doing it? I mean they convinced me, I think it's them....


by: SteveHC
November 14, 2012 5:02 PM
"Hamas militants frequently fire rockets into Israel from Gaza."

- "Frequently"??? Try all day long, EVERY day. In other words, Hamas fires armed rockets at southern Israeli citizens "24/7." Israel's response is both justifiable and LONG overdue.


by: Anonymous
November 14, 2012 4:44 PM
Incredible how this news source fails to mention over the past week hundreds of rockets have been fired into southern Israel, provoking this response. No skewing or taking sides by this fine upstanding news organization now, is there?


by: JKF from: Ottawa, Canada
November 14, 2012 4:16 PM
Once again Israel has been pushed into a defensive war; the Gaza terrorists have fired over 150 missiles into Israel in the past 4 weeks. I found it very surprising that Israel tolerated such a high number of missiles directed at its civilians; most of the missiles (rockets/mortars) fired by the terrorists were directed against civilian targets. Israel will have no choice but to retake the Philadelphi corridoer; it is clearly evident, that the naval blockade alone will not stop the flow of weapons to the Gaza terrorists. Once again, and as usual, civilians on both sides will suffer.


by: Sensi
November 14, 2012 2:15 PM
The warmongering israelis trying to divert the attention from the upcoming Palestinian recognition at the UN by opening a war front and escalating the conflict... The Hamas isn't the one launching crude rockets into Israel, other militant groups are responsible...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015i
X
Carol Pearson
August 30, 2014 7:14 PM
A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.

AppleAndroid