Hamas marked the three year anniversary of Operation Cast Lead on
Tuesday, saying Israeli threats to launch another large-scale operation
in Gaza to root out terrorist infrastructure was nothing more than
"psychological warfare and propaganda."
"These threats do not
frighten the [Hamas] movement or the Palestinian people," the Ma'an news
agency quoted Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri as saying at a press
'We can't avoid another Gaza confrontation'
Cast Lead criminal probe still open 3 yrs on
Abu Zuhri referred to Israeli "war crimes" and "genocide" in the Gaza
Strip, stating that the international community should "deal with the
occupation as a terrorist entity, the most dangerous in the world."
The Hamas official cited the UN-commissioned Goldstone Report as
evidence of Israel's war crimes and called on Israeli officials to be
prosecuted for their part in Operation Cast Lead in the International
Criminal Court at the Hague.
Abu Zuhri deemed the Israeli operation and the siege of Gaza a
"failure," saying that the Palestinian resistance in Gaza had come to
serve as a model for Arab revolutions.
He added that Hamas remains committed to implementing the Palestinian
reconciliation agreement with Fatah as an expression of the unity of the
Also speaking on Tuesday, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz "expressed satisfaction with the high level of deterrence Israel gained from [Operation Cast Lead]," according to a statement on the IDF website.
"There will be no escape from conducting a significant operation [in Gaza]," Gantz contended.
"The IDF knows how to operate in a determined, decisive and offensive
manner against terrorists in the Gaza Strip," he explained, adding that
any military action would be planned and quick.