Congratulations go out to Sedrot Mayor Eli Moyal.
He resigned in disgust at how the Israeli government was ignoring the problems in his town and how he couldn't protect his citizens, and he got results.
Good going Eli Moyal!
Now, let's get rid of those terrorist jerks.
Last update - 23:44 13/12/2007
Barak declares 'special situation' in Sderot
By Yuval Azoulay, Haaretz Correspondent and The Associated Press
Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided on Thursday evening to declare a "special situation" in Sderot and in other communities bordering the Gaza Strip, due to constant Qassam rocket attacks from the coastal territory.
The decision will go before the government for approval during its next meeting, and then before the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.
The declaration means that the Israel Defense Forces and the Home Front Command will cooperate in decisions pertaining to the management of Sderot and the other affected communities.
Barak recommended the declaration remain in effect until March 2008. A similar order expired roughly one month ago.
The declaration essentially transfers emergency authority from the state to the army. Therefore, the IDF Southern Command can determine whether or not schools will remain open, and the Home Front can order factories containing dangerous materials to close their doors.
Residents affected by the special situation are eligible to be compensated for damages suffered as a result of the declaration.
Barak's recommendation came a few hours after he convinced Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal to remain in his post, after the latter submitted his resignation the day before, according to sources close to him.
It also followed a Qassam rocket attack that struck the porch of a Sderot house on Thursday. A 40-year-old woman was moderately wounded from the impact of the strike, and taken to the Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon for treatment. Two other people suffered from shock.
Moyal announced he would step down after a barrage of at least 17 Qassam rockets struck the western Negev on Wednesday morning. He cited his inability to function as mayor in the difficult security situation as reason for his resignation.
Barak told Moyal that his responsibility and commitment to the people of Sderot takes precedence over every other consideration, and that replacing him at this time would not be possible. He also promised him that the defense establishment would make an effort to find a solution to the Qassam problem.
Before meeting with Barak, the mayor told Haaretz he was debating his next move. "If the Defense Minister tells me 'stay,' then from my end, that's like being called to reserve duty," he said.
In an interview with Israel Radio on Wednesday, Moyal blamed the government for an evasion of responsibility and helplessness against the threat from Gaza, saying he hoped his resignation would encourage a major military operation in the coastal territory.
"I cannot take the responsibility to manage a city that is under attack for seven years," he said. "If 20 children are killed tomorrow from a rocket, I will be asked, 'why did you open the kindergarten?' I have been deliberating matters pertaining to human life for years now, and I cannot continue," he said.
Moyal said later that "this is a decision I have been weighing for many years. A year ago I threatened to quit, and today I have reached a decision. For seven years no one has taken responsibility for what is happening here. It is unreasonable to start the morning with eight Qassams. I am not willing to take this responsibility. I was chosen to manage a city, and not this situation."
Incoming UN envoy denounces Qassam attack
The incoming UN Mideast envoy, Robert Serry, denounced Thursday's rocket attack in unusually strong terms after meeting with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni. "Let me be clear about this: We consider that to be terrorist acts," he said.
Earlier Thursday, militants fired three Qassam rockets toward the western Negev. Only one of the rockets was located. No injuries or damages were reported in the incident.