Israeli military chief AMAN chief Maj-Gen Aharon Zeevi again warns Sharon government: Al-Qaeda bases have sprung up in Sinai and Gaza

Terrorist weapons continue to flow into the Gaza Strip

DEBKAfile Intelligence

October 8, 2005

In further confirmation of DEBKAfile disclosures to the cabinet session Sunday, Oct. 9, Zeevi added the Egyptians have been trying to dislodge al Qaeda’s stronghold in Sinai for the sake of their own security. The jihadists, he said, aim also to destabilize Jordan. The massive smuggling of a complete terror arsenal into the Gaza Strip through the breached Philadelphi border strip has been going on since Israeli troops were pulled out a month ago.

As Egyptian and Palestinian police stand aside for the border rampage exposed by DEBKAfile from Day One, the Sharon government will Sunday, Oct. 9, hold a serious discussion on the security and customs arrangements Israel deems necessary for the Rafah border terminal. No one has thought to stem the dangerous flow of advanced weapons into Gaza in the meantime.

Foreign minister Silvan Shalom admitted Saturday Oct 8: Just as the Egyptians never corked the Palestinians’ weapons smuggling tunnels from Sinai, they have avoided stemming the heavy flow of advanced arms into the Gaza Strip since Israel’s pull-back.

DEBKAfile reveals the Palestinians have been allowed to top up their terror arsenal not only with shoulder-launched anti-air and anti-tank missiles, long-range Katyusha rockets, thousands of automatic rifles and three-quarters of a million bullets, but also a novel type of surface missile. Last Wednesday, Oct. 5, Israeli troops discovered in the fields of Nahal Oz near the Gaza border part of a new Qassam which explodes in mid-air over its target. It is especially lethal because of the falling shrapnel it releases, especially in built-up areas, even if it misses its target.

Regardless of the river of deadly war materiel reaching the waiting hands of Palestinian terrorists from Sinai, the Sharon government and security chiefs have come up with three extraordinary proposals:

1. To permit Egypt to give Palestinian security police a limited quantity of side-arms and ammunition to redress the imbalance created by the massive deliveries from Sinai to Palestinian terrorists.

This proposal does not address the AMAN-military intelligence report to a Knesset committee that the Palestinian Authority has purchased some of the smuggled weapons for cash.

Even foreign minister Shalom admitted Saturday that the demand for Israel to provide the Palestinian police with arms to deal with the terrorists was “only a pretext for their own indecision to come to grips with the necessity of breaking up the terrorist organizations. The last thing they are short of is weaponry.”

2. To post British security officers at the Rafah border terminal. DEBKAfile notes that this proposal ignores the fact that the entire Philadelphi border barrier has been breached. For $10-15, an Egyptian police officer will let anyone through, with or without documentation, with our without freight.

3. For the "nth time", Israel will submit the ridiculous demand for the useless Palestinian Authority and its chairman Mahmoud Abbas “to disarm the terrorist organizations.” It would have been a lot simpler if Israel had stepped in and prevented the heavy influx of armaments from reaching terrorist hands in the first place. In the 26 days since the IDF left Gaza, the territory has been stuffed to bursting with weaponry.