The 2008 War between Israel and Hamas

The 2008 War between Israel and Hamas
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The 2008 War between Israel and Hamas

Facts & Data on Rocket Firing before, during & after the Cease-Fire

On 4 November 2008 Israeli forces attacked and killed six Palestinians inside Gaza, ending the four plus month old Lull Arrangement.

From 19 June 2008, until Israel’s 4 November 2008 strike, Hamas “was careful to maintain the cease fire.” The Lull reduced rocket launches into Israel from an average of around 380 per month to less than 9.

In September there were four attacks, in October only two and those launchers were arrested by Hamas. Of the small number of rockets and mortars launched during the Lull many, like Islamic Jihad’s 24 June launches, were in response to Israel’s killing of Palestinians on the West Bank.



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Nonetheless, Hamas continued to arrest Palestinian violators of the truce until the 4 November strike.

Despite the assertions from the Government of Israel that their invasion of the Gaza Strip will only stop when Hamas stops firing rockets into Israel, it wasn’t the rockets that provoked this latest military carnage. The Lull was working and Hamas rockets WERE NOT being fired into Israel. So why did Israel attack?

Well, Nov. 4, 2008 means nothing in the Middle East. But it happened to be a very important date in the United States. Election Day with Barack Obama leading the field and eventually winning.

Here is a chart of the actual rocket fire from Israeli sources, which exposes the lie. Israel didn’t attack because of rocket fire.

Rocket and Morgar shell fire into Israel during the Tahadiya (Lull) Arrangement
compared with the with the preceding months (as of 16 December 2008)

Chart of Actual Rockets Fired before, during and after truce

Chart source – Terrorism Information Center – Tel Aviv
The above chart is based on the information provided in the report prepared by
the Terrorism Information Center in Tel Aviv. Here is the link to the original report (PDF)
that also includes the chart above on page 10 of the report.

This is a Second chart from the Israeli Consulate in New York City
Which also shows the Number of Palestinian rockets fired in each month of 2008
(adapted from The Israeli consulate in NYC [pdf])


4 November 2008
Israeli Strike Is First in Gaza Since Start of Cease-Fire” – NYTimes 4 Nov ’08
Gaza truce broken as Israeli raid kills six Hamas gunmen” – The Guardian, UK
Heavy Blow to Ceasefire” – Xinhua (China) 6 Nov 2008
Cease-fire in Gaza Strip unravels” – Int’nat Herald Tribune 4 November 2008
Israeli strikes kill six in Gaza” – ABC News – (Australia) 4 Nov 2008
Google search – “ceasefire gaza 4 Nov 2008

19 June Lull Agreement
“The core elements of the lull arrangement are the cessation of terrorism from the Gaza Strip, the cessation of IDF counter-activities in the Gaza Strip, and the opening of the crossings between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The ceasefire along the Israeli-Gaza Strip border was also supposed to re-launch the Egyptian-brokered negotiations on the release of Israeli captive soldier Gilad Shalit (as demanded by Israel) and promote dialogue on opening the Rafah Crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt (as demanded by Hamas).
The lull in the fighting is valid for six months and only in the Gaza Strip (during that time, Egypt will attempt to extend it to Judea and Samaria as well).

During its first month, the lull arrangement resulted in a significant drop in rocket and mortar fire at Israel. A relative calm has settled over Sderot and Israeli population centers near the Gaza Strip, occasionally broken by rockets and mortar bombs fired by terrorist organizations which oppose the lull (mostly local Fatah networks, with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad violating the lull only on one occasion).”
Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Read More

Hamas Was Careful
A period of relative quiet between June 19 and November 4 : As of June 19, there was a marked reduction in the extent of attacks on the western Negev population. The lull was sporadically violated by rocket and mortar shell fire, carried out by rogue terrorist organizations, in some instance in defiance of Hamas (especially by Fatah and Al-Qaeda supporters). Hamas was careful to maintain the ceasefire. The IDF refrained from undertaking counterterrorism activities in the Gaza Strip, taking only routine defensive security measures along the border fence. Between June 19 and November 4, 20 rockets (three of which fell inside the Gaza Strip) and 18 mortar shells (five of which fell inside the Gaza Strip) were fired at Israel .

Six Months of the Lull Arrangement – IICC Report Dec 2008

24 June 2008
“Two Gaza rockets slam into southern Israel” – Agance France Press/Raw Story
“Rockets ‘violated Gaza ceasefire'” – BBC 24 June 2008

Hamas Enforced Lull
“Hamas members have arrested Fatah operatives who were involved in firing at Israel and confiscated their arms. ” – Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
“Hamas arrests Gaza rocket squad after two Qassams hit Negev” – Haaretz 30 July 2008
“Hamas arrests Gaza rocket squad” – BBC 11 July 2008

19 June 2008
“Truce Starts for Israel and Hamas in Gaza” – NYTimes 20 June 2008
“Israel-Hamas Truce Starts” – Al Jazeera 19 June 2008
Israel and Hamas reach Gaza truce deal – Agance France Press – 17 June 2008
Israel-Hamas Gaza truce goes into effect – China Daily – 19 June 2008
“Hamas Offers Israel 10-year Truce” – MSNBC 21 April 2008
Google Search – “Israel Hamas truce begins”

The Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center opened in 2001. It is part of the Israel Intelligence Heritage & Commemoration Center (IICC) , an NGO dedicated to the memory of the fallen of the Israeli Intelligence Community and it is located near Gelilot , north of Tel Aviv. It is headed by (Col. Ret.) Dr. Reuven Erlich .
The Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center focuses on issues concerning intelligence and terrorism. Via its website and e-mail bulletins it reports on:
• The Palestinian Authority and its policies regarding terrorism and terrorist organizations.
• Palestinian terrorist organizations and their activity during the lull in the fighting.
• Anti-Jewish and anti-Israeli incitement and hate propaganda.
• Terrorism-sponsoring countries (especially Syria and Iran ).
• Hezbollah.
• The global financing of terrorism .
• Links between Palestinian-Middle Eastern terrorism and global Jihad.
• Suicide-bombing terrorism and its source in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
• The involvement of women and children in Palestinian terrorism.
Learn more about the IICC

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).

Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at, and at, and at He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper,, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.

The managing editor of Suburban Chicagoland Online News website, Hanania's columns also appear in the Southwest News Newspaper Group of 8 newspapers.

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