Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz made good on his pledge to “strike hard at our enemy Hamas” this week, in retaliation for a tank bombing that killed four Israeli soldiers. The militant group, a leading proponent of suicide bombings, had been operating in relative freedom, since it is based in Gaza and the Israeli crackdown has been concentrated in the West Bank. But Israelis crept into the Gaza Strip this week and launched a series of attacks that killed at least 10 Hamas members, including the No. 2 military leader, Riyad Abu Zeid. He was ambushed by Israeli commandos hiding in a vegetable truck. Hamas political leader Abdel Aziz Rantisi vowed revenge. He said the group’s military wing “now has the permission and authorization to commit any operation they like, at any time, in any way they like.”
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