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Jerusalem - IN PHOTOS: Israel Ready For Gaza Invasion

Published on: November 19, 2012 08:59 AM
By: Reuters
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 Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. EPA Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. EPA

Jerusalem - Israel is ready for a ground invasion in the Gaza Strip but prefers a diplomatic solution, a senior official close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday.

“We would prefer to see a diplomatic solution that would guarantee the peace for Israel’s population in the south. If that is possible, then a ground operation would no longer be required,” the official told Reuters. “But if diplomacy fails, we may well have no alternative but to send in ground forces.”

An Israeli soldier jumps down from his armoured tank at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier jumps down from his armoured tank at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers are pictured at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers are pictured at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers are pictured with their tank at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers are pictured with their tank at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers gather at a staging area in southern Israel, along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet on 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier from an 'Iron Dome' missile defence system crew runs pass in front of one of the launchers near Sderot, Israel, 19 November 2012. NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen during a meeting of the EU Defence and Foreign ministers in Brussels urged Israel to show 'restraint' in its defence against attacks from Gaza. 'Of course Israel has the right to self-defence, and attacks against Israel must end. But the international community would also expect Israel to show restraint,' Rasmussen said. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier from an ‘Iron Dome’ missile defence system crew runs pass in front of one of the launchers near Sderot, Israel, 19 November 2012. NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen during a meeting of the EU Defence and Foreign ministers in Brussels urged Israel to show ‘restraint’ in its defence against attacks from Gaza. ‘Of course Israel has the right to self-defence, and attacks against Israel must end. But the international community would also expect Israel to show restraint,’ Rasmussen said. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Religious Israeli soldiers pray next to their  APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at sun rise as a tank passes behind on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a soldier adjusts the canon of a Merkava tank. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Religious Israeli soldiers pray next to their APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at sun rise as a tank passes behind on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a soldier adjusts the canon of a Merkava tank. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleep next to tanks as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleep next to tanks as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier loads bullets into a weapon at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier loads bullets into a weapon at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers prepare for morning prayers after waking up at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers prepare for morning prayers after waking up at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier prepares for morning prayers at his APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier prepares for morning prayers at his APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleeping by their APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleeping by their APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
One Israeli soldier continues sleeping as members of tank crew break up after a briefing at sunrise at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)One Israeli soldier continues sleeping as members of tank crew break up after a briefing at sunrise at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier after waking up on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier after waking up on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers on their Merkava tank after waking up in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers on their Merkava tank after waking up in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Religious Israeli soldiers pray next to their  APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at sun rise on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a soldier adjusts the canon of a Merkava tank. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Religious Israeli soldiers pray next to their APC (Armoured Personnel Carrier) at sun rise on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a soldier adjusts the canon of a Merkava tank. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier counting a string of bullets as weapons are readied on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier counting a string of bullets as weapons are readied on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Behind, a group of religious soldier take part in morning prayers. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls pray at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldier check ammunition as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldier check ammunition as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleep in sleeping bags next to tanks, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleep in sleeping bags next to tanks, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier smoking a cigarette next to his tank, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier smoking a cigarette next to his tank, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleep in sleeping bags next to tanks, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleep in sleeping bags next to tanks, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldier cleaning the barrel of a gun on a tank, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldier cleaning the barrel of a gun on a tank, as the sun rises on a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls  praying at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls praying at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldier unload their rifles during a morning briefing at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldier unload their rifles during a morning briefing at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldier shaves by Merkava tanks in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldier shaves by Merkava tanks in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldiers checks his gun on a Merkava tank  at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldiers checks his gun on a Merkava tank at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls  praying at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldiers wearing prayer shawls praying at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldiers sleep on a Merkava tank at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldiers sleep on a Merkava tank at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleep on a Merkava tank at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleep on a Merkava tank at a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers brush their teeth in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers brush their teeth in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
Israeli soldiers sleep next to a Merkava tank in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence had caused 'significant damage' to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a 'heavy price' from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)Israeli soldiers sleep next to a Merkava tank in a tank staging area in southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. Reports state that the Israeli military is prepared to significantly widen operations against Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet 18 November 2012. He said Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defence had caused ‘significant damage’ to the missile arsenal that Palestinian militant groups were aiming at Israel, and had extracted a ‘heavy price’ from Hamas and other armed organizations. (Credit: EPA)
An Israeli soldier holding a Torah scroll as other soldiers in his unit attend a early morning briefing on a tank and armoured vehicle staging area n southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. (Credit: EPA)An Israeli soldier holding a Torah scroll as other soldiers in his unit attend a early morning briefing on a tank and armoured vehicle staging area n southern Israel along the border with the Gaza Strip, 19 November 2012. (Credit: EPA)

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1

 Nov 19, 2012 at 09:16 AM Anonymous Says:

god should keep our children safe

3

 Nov 19, 2012 at 09:45 AM Buchwalter Says:

Thank you for these pictures maybe this will change the mind of the tzionym haters on this website and the Jewish antisemites the Neturei Karta, an oxymoron

4

 Nov 19, 2012 at 10:02 AM Anonymous Says:

May god protect these very brave men...I see very frum along with others but they are all holy Tzaddikim.

My heart weeps....my eyes shed tears..

For those who pray..pray..for those who can donate funds..please do so..

Israel is not a wealthy nation..those Iron Dome Missiles are about 50K each.

5

 Nov 19, 2012 at 10:08 AM ChachoMoe Says:

Reply to #1  
Anonymous Says:

god should keep our children safe

Amen!!

7

 Nov 19, 2012 at 11:08 AM NeveAliza Says:

It's not any different than when we refer to around 50 or so people really learning in Kollel out of several thousand stationed there.

8

 Nov 19, 2012 at 11:42 AM Vasserman Says:

I don't see any kollels in the staging area holding guns and if they are doing the job then why are the rockets still falling?

9

 Nov 19, 2012 at 12:56 PM debbyspero Says:

Shame on you!!! the reason why there are only "50 or so people davening" is bcz the tens of thousands of other boys their age in EY who know how to daven are too chicken and too lazy to join them! they hide behind the mantle of our holy Torah but in reality they are the cause of the greatest chillul Hashem! in the words of Moshe Rabeinu, "ha-achichem yeitzu lamilchama v'atem teishvu po?!" May HKBH judge these delinquents Jews as only He can!

10

 Nov 19, 2012 at 01:30 PM Anonymous Says:

The rabbonim gave orders last week for the kollel yungerleit in the south to run and hide in shelters in the North until the threat from the rockets had passed. I haven't seen a single chareidi rav or askan coming forward and encouraging their tzibur to enlist in the IDF and help defend the medinah. Do they really believe the rockets will spare them when they come raining down on populated areas? Sadly, its going to take a direct rocket hit directly on one of the kollels or beis medrash with pictures of major chareidi casualties to convince their leadership that they have to become part of the solution, which in this case means joining the defense forces rather than simply saying tehillim in the safety of a shelter.

11

 Nov 19, 2012 at 01:33 PM schmaltzy Says:

Hey number 6..you make a great point. Why AREN'T there more than around 50 soldiers davening out of the thousands. Where are they when klal Yisroel needs every soldier.??

12

 Nov 19, 2012 at 01:45 PM TruthBeTold Says:

All these valiant Jews defending Israel are tzaddikim, especially the commanders who devote all their time and lives to the military defense of Eretz Yisrael. I don't believe the Chareidim can accuse them of violating Shabbos, since they are most likely PATUR from Shabbos because they are constantly dealing with PIKUACH NEFESH situations.

In this Tekufah HaGedolah, may Hashem protect these Jewish soldiers from all harm, and grant them courage and power to speedily obliterate from the Earth the evil Jew-hater Islamo-Nazi beasts.

13

 Nov 19, 2012 at 02:18 PM cowdoc Says:

I do not know how many do or do not daven. It is possible that not all can daven at the same time just as not all soldiers can eat or sleep at the same time due to the fact that there is a war. Some like my son,many times are only able to daven the basics byechidut due to army duties, so the pictures do not tell the complete story. However we should all remember that whether they wear tefillin or not or they eat what you or I would not, many have left wives, children, and jobs and they are of the most holy of Jews willing to give their lives for what we have wanted for 2000 years.

14

 Nov 19, 2012 at 02:22 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #9  
debbyspero Says:

Shame on you!!! the reason why there are only "50 or so people davening" is bcz the tens of thousands of other boys their age in EY who know how to daven are too chicken and too lazy to join them! they hide behind the mantle of our holy Torah but in reality they are the cause of the greatest chillul Hashem! in the words of Moshe Rabeinu, "ha-achichem yeitzu lamilchama v'atem teishvu po?!" May HKBH judge these delinquents Jews as only He can!

Uuu'mein v'Uuu'mein...(said with intense litvasher nusach)

15

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