Early this morning IOF soldiers made inqursions into Askar Refugee Camp, Nablus with the aim of arresting/assasinating leading HAMAS members. This IOF action resulted in the deaths of four Palestinians and the destuction of a four storey building.
The IOF began moving into Askar at approximately 3am. There were soldiers on foot, special forces, tanks and a bulldozer. Their attention was directed at the home of leading HAMAS activists Faiez Alsader and Khamees Abu Saleam. The IOF have stated that the purpose of their inqursion was simply to arrest these two men. However, it is clear from the presence of the bulldozer that they also intended to demolish the home, a four storey building, with no regard for the resisdents.
After exchanges of fire between those in the building and soldiers, the IOF launched at least one rocket at the building, causing its partial destruction, fire and numerous explosions. The result of this was the death of the two HAMAS activists Faiez Alsader, Khamees Abu Saleam.
The presence of the IOF in Askar, resulted in running street battles between the army and the Shebab armed with stones. It was during this David and Goliath contest that Mahmoud Altik lost his life.
Ambulances from the UPMRC were blocked from entering the area to aid the wounded, even after members of the International Solidarity Movement started to move with the ambulances. ISM activists remained in the area [monitoring the actions of the military and surveying and recording the rubble of the demolished home] until the IOF finally decided to withdraw, leaving the youth, whose only resistance are the rocks of their land, to wake to another sun filled Palestinian dawn.
So goodbye to the hudna. It seems almost certain that HAMAS will seek vengance for the deaths of two of their own in Askar this morning. All is left is to wonder, why the Israelis would undertake this action when an end to the hudna would be the resulting action? Is this a constructive path to peace? Is the road map dominated by concerns for Israeli security? Whatever the answers, it is clear that todays happenings were not implmented in the pursuit of peace, but in the name of security.