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Police Shocked - 5-Year-Old Seen with a M-16 on an Ashdod Street


Ashdod police were more than a bit surprised on Sunday when they spotted a 5-year-old walking a local street brandishing an M-16 rifle. The rifle was quickly determined to be real, but fortunately, unloaded. Police learned the boy's father, who was on leave from reserve duty, became intoxicated and did not notice his son walking out with the weapon. The man has been taken into custody.

Israeli Warplane Bomb Hizbullah in Lebanon

By VOA News

Israeli warplanes have bombed Hizbullah positions in southern Lebanon after cross-border artillery fire from the terrorist group killed an Israeli teenager and wounded four others. There were no immediate reports of airstrike casualties.

Israel launched the attack after it said Hizbullah anti-tank shells killed a 16-year old boy in the Israeli town of Shlomi. Hizbullah said it fired anti-aircraft shells at Israeli warplanes in Lebanese airspace.

A volley of seven Hizbullah mortar shells killed Haviv Dadon, 16. The shells hit an empty nursery in a residential area as well as a crowded street. Seven others, including an elderly couple that lived next door to the nursery, were treated for shock.

Dozens of family friends arrived at the Dadon home when word of his death became known. "He was a boy whom the whole neighborhood loved," his mother Miriam, said. "Who will return my flower to me?" His father Chananyah, who recently underwent a kidney transplant, passed out when he heard what had occurred, and was treated briefly in the hospital. Five older siblings survive Haviv.

He was the first Israeli to have been killed by a shelling attack at Israeli civilian targets in several years. Hizbullah terrorists have killed seven soldiers since the IDF's withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000. In addition, five civilians and an IDF officer were murdered when Hizbullah terrorists infiltrated Israel outside Kibbutz Metzubah in March 2002.

Knesset member Yuval Shteinitz, Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman, took a relatively extreme stance: "Israel must threaten Syria with all-out war," he said. Maalot Mayor Shlomo Buchbut said that deterrence means not only threatening but also actions.

In its official protest, Israel warned Lebanon and Syria that if they do not restrain the Hizbullah terrorists, Israel would be forced to take action to protect its citizens. Lebanese and Syrian officials justified the Hizbullah attack, and one of them even said that the fact that Israel is protesting to the UN is evidence that Israel cannot take military action. The last time Israel protested to the United Nations was following the double terrorist attack in Kenya last November.

U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan condemned Sunday's shelling. He also called on governments that hold influence over Hizbullah to deter it from further actions and urged Israel to exercise restraint. Both Iran and Syria back Hizbullah.

The incident follows artillery exchanges Friday between Israel and Hizbullah in the disputed Shebaa Farms border region. Shebaa Farms is occupied by Israel and claimed by both Syria and Lebanon.

The United Nations said the area belongs to Syria and that Syria and Israel should negotiate its future. Israel withdrew its forces from southern Lebanon in May 2000 following a 22-year occupation.

Israel to Continue Building Security Fence, Despite U.S. Opposition

By Ross Dunn (VOA) Jerusalem

Israel says it would continue building a security fence in the West Bank along its planned route, despite opposition from President George Bush.

Israel's foreign minister, Silvan Shalom, said Sunday that efforts are continuing to complete a security barrier in the West Bank in a bid to prevent Palestinians crossing into the Jewish State to carry out attacks. He was responding to criticism of the project by President Bush, who said Friday that the fence is a problem because it makes it hard to develop a contiguous Palestinian state.

Shalom told Israel radio he believes Bush also supports a security fence for a period in which there was terror.

At the same time, the Israeli foreign minister acknowledged that the U.S. administration is seeking a change in the route of the fence to prevent it from causing undue hardships for the Palestinians. Shalom said Israel would pursue talks with the United States with the hope of reaching a compromise over the issue.

He also said the current situation is intolerable following a threat by the militant Islamic group Hamas to punish Israel for raiding a bomb factory in a Palestinian refugee camp near the West Bank city of Nablus on Friday.

Two Hamas terrorists and an Israeli soldier were killed in the operation. A Palestinian stone-thrower was killed shortly afterward by Israeli troops. Thousands of Palestinians attended the funerals of the three Palestinians on Saturday. Masked gunmen fired in the air, and mourners waving Hamas flags vowed to avenge their deaths. The group's leaders, however, stopped short of saying the incident would destroy the ceasefire.

AP Calls Terror Organizations "Militias" Commentary by CAMERA (c) 2003

The Associated Press (AP) has adopted the word "militia" to refer to Palestinian terrorist groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades. Not only are Hamas and Islamic Jihad on both the U.S. and U.N. list of international terrorist organizations, but also all three share a platform of targeting and killing civilians.

This is not the function of a "militia," which the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language defines as: an army composed of ordinary citizens ... subject to call for service in an emergency. Hamas does not detonate bombs on crowded buses as "service in an emergency" but in the service of terrorizing a civilian population.

The AP has generally misapplied "militia" in recent months to refer to the three Palestinian terrorist groups that have signed a ceasefire, and to a step in the first phase of the road map calling for the dismantling of Palestinian terrorist groups, calling the groups "militias."

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