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Dear President Clinton,

As you must be aware of by now, at dawn this morning I ordered six F-15 fighter planes to bomb and strafe the southern Lebanese villages Yarun, Rumaysh, and An Naqurah in retaliation for yesterday's Hizbullah murder of five Israeli soldiers on patrol and the kidnaping of fifteen more.

Coming right after the momentous step forward made by the signing of the Hebron Treaty, in part made possible by your encouragement, I cannot doubt that the Hizbullah assault was intended to derail the peace process.

Israel's response to this incident may be misinterpreted as equally aggressive, and counter-productive. America, especially, may feel betrayed, as the Hebron Treaty was signed at Camp David. However, I feel that our actions this morning were completely justified, and once you understand our position, I believe you will, too.

Massad has long suspected these villages as training grounds for Hizbullah terrorists, and intelligence sources have all but confirmed that these villages housed, among other things, the Hizbullah members involved in yesterday’s attack.

Especially after this most recent incident, Israeli security necessitated the measures taken in retaliation. At the moment, we are, in fact, waiting for the official confirmation of the deaths of at least three internationally operational terrorists.

Any apology I offer for the lost lives of civilians would be purposeless and in vain. But despite the regrettable fact of civilian casualties, I could not compromise the safety of my own people by allowing possible terrorist activity to continue.

While this will hardly do anything to propel the peace process, I do not foresee it as a major deterrent, either. Israel still wants peace, and would never commit such an act as this morning s were it not in our own safety s interest.

We will continue to work with the Palestinian Authority towards a final agreement.

With regards,

Binyamin Netanyahu


News Release


By: Danny Feldman

Monday was a day that Hizbullah terrorists will not soon forget. On Monday afternoon at approximately 1400 hours a group estimated at 30 Hizbullah members in jeeps attacked a unit of Israeli troops patrolling the Southern Lebanese border in the Israeli security zone.

Five of the soldiers were killed and fifteen others were taken hostage. Five were taken to the Arab camp of Me'ratiki, and the other ten were thought to have been held in the town of Shimabob, but were later found to have actually been in Ma'radooda.

Because of the incident, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered action against the Hizbullah. Benjamin Netanyahu said at a press conference on Monday "Our stance on terrorism is non tolerant. We will not back down from these terrorists and we will strike back."

Following the press conference, Netanyahu ordered the Israeli Air Force to seek out and bomb Schimabob and Me'ratiki. Several aircraft including the F-15 and the F-14 were sent on the mission.

Israeli intelligence located a secret terrorist training camp near there and it has been said it was destroyed but no official word has been said yet. Both bombings were successful although because of the incident, the five soldiers in Ma'ratiki were executed 20 miles south of Ma'ratiki.

Their bodies were dumped near Israeli base #42 inside the security zone. The ten soldiers that were being held in Ma'radooda were later released and are now currently receiving medical care.

Before entering the hospital, Sergeant Saul Merscher said "I fully support [Prime Minister] Netanyahu's decision to bomb the two towns." He was released Tuesday along with nine others after being held for 23 hours without food, water, or even medical attention in the camp of Ma'radooda.

All the soldiers sustained minor injuries. During the bombings, only 27 civilians were killed and nearly 145 Hizbullah were killed as the IAF bombed the terrorist camp near Schimabob, called Nescha'matuba, which translates into "Kill for the good of us." There are mixed reactions to the Israeli's strikes around the world, with the Belgians condemning the action, while President Bush was quoted as saying, "Israel has every right to defend itself against terrorist attacks."

In Israel there is some anxiety about Hizbullah reappraisals.