Hamas: Gilad Schalit may become Ron Arad 2

Hamas, other groups readying for "Israeli assault" on Gaza, hold exercises simulating kidnapping of IDF soldiers.

Gilad Schalit 248.88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Gilad Schalit 248.88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
"If the enemy continues with its stubborn attitude, Gilad Schalit will become a second Ron Arad," a spokesman for Izzadin Kassam, Hamas's armed wing, said Wednesday, after the group held a large-scale drill on the site of the ruins of the former Gaza settlement of Netzarim. Schalit has been held captive in Gaza for over two years. Arad is an IAF navigator who parachuted into Lebanon in the 1980s and was captured by the Amal Shi'ite group, but went missing some years later. His fate is unknown. Izzadin Kassam spokesman Abu Obeida also accused Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and PA Prime Minister Salaam Fayad of putting spokes in the wheels of a deal that would release Schalit in return for Palestinian prisoners. "Abbas and Fayad do not want the Resistance to achieve a respectable deal as they do not believe in the way of resistance. They only believe in the way of negotiations and begging to the enemy and succeed only in releasing prisoners who were anyway approaching their release date," Abu Obeida said. He also stressed that kidnapping IDF soldiers would continue to be a strategy of his organization, as long as Palestinian prisoners were being held in Israeli jails. Other groups, like the Islamic Jihad's Al Quds Brigades and the Sallah a-Din Brigades of the Popular Resistance Committees, have also held large-scale exercises in anticipation of what they termed the "coming Israeli assault on the Strip." On Saturday, Sallah a-Din held its own exercise, simulating the abduction of a soldier. 50 of the organization's men reportedly participated in the drill.