HA’ARETZ 1. TODAY: DESPITE POLICE BAN – SETTLERS WILL BEGIN LARGE-SCALE MARCH TO GUSH KATIF; CONCERN IN IDF OVER VIOLENT CONFRONTATIONS. Refusers: IDF soldier refused to block Gaza Strip following personal order he received from Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu. Escalation in Gaza: Security sources – Israel to refrain from wide-ranging in Gaza Strip to block Kassam and mortar fire for the time being. (.). 2. THEY CALLED HIM “TRAITOR” BUT COMPANY COMMANDER FROM GUSH KATIF INSISTED ON PARTICIPATING IN EVACUATION. 3. Neveh Dekalim: NINE-YEAR-OLD KIDS IN MORTAR NEIGHBORHOOD TREAT FIRING AS “CHILDREN’S GAME.” 4. NEXT US AMBASSADOR – DICK JONES. Kurtzer’s designated replacement has doctorate in statistics and is Middle East expert. HATZOFEH 1. Great restraint: More than 50 mortar rounds fired at Gush Katif and Sderot, seven people wounded: Yigal Kirschenzeft and Nagid Har-Noy moderately wounded, the rest – including four children – lightly wounded. And the IDF waits. TODAY: ORANGE MARCH GETS UNDERWAY. Police refuse to approve protest march on pretext that organizers did not meet agreements and that demonstration will, therefore, not be legal. Yesha Council: Police reneged on Sharon’s orders. 5,000 police to prevent marchers from moving towards Gush Katif. Hesder company to be disbanded because nine of its soldiers refused to expel Jews. Tension in Gaza Strip ahead of IDF assault. 2. IDF ADMITS: SABBATH DESECRATION AT ROADBLOCKS WAS IN CONTRAVENTION OF IDF CHIEF RABBI WEISS’S DIRECTIVES. MA’ARIV 1. Police: Marchers will be blocked near Kfar Maimon. ON COLLISION COURSE. Today: Disengagement opponents to embark on three-day march from Netivot to Gush Katif. Thousands of police to bar their way. 2. LAST NIGHT TOO: HARSH CONFRONTATIONS AT KISUFIM. YEDIOT AHRONOT 1. Settlers determined to hold march despite police ban. 20,000 SOLDIERS VS. TENS OF THOUSANDS OF MARCHERS. Will begin at 16:30 – Masses of disengagement opponents to gather in Netivot and begin to march. Goal: Reach Gush Katif and break in. Senior police officer: We will not allow them to get close to Gaza Strip. 2. Drama at roadblock. Mother of Kisufim company commander: “MY SON, RETURN HOME.” Friends from Gush Katif begged him to refuse order. His former teacher demonstrated in front of him. Settlers called him “Traitor!” and cursed him. But Capt. Asaf Yemini, resident of Gedid, did not break. He supported those under his command and continued to carry out his mission. His commanders: “In this tough leadership test, he won big.” 3. GRAVEDIGGERS UNIT REFUSES TO PARTICIPATE IN EVACUATION. BPI-info
SUMMARY OF EDITORIALS FROM THE HEBREW PRESS Yediot Ahronot comments on the history of the Disengagement Plan and suggests that, “Focusing on the unilateral nature of the withdrawal merely invited Hamas and Islamic Jihad to begin a series of attacks in order to prove that Israel is withdrawing from Gaza not because it was sick of the occupation but because the terrorist organizations made the occupation unbearable.” The editors believe that the success of the Plan now depends on Palestinian Authority President Abu Mazen and his cohorts putting down the renewed outbreak of terrorism: “If they do – Dahlan, et. al. will save Sharon’s plan. If not – the order will be given to open a wide-ranging IDF operation in the Gaza Strip that will postpone the implementation of the disengagement.” The paper suggests that if the disengagement is going to be carried out in any case, Abu Mazen has no leverage over the terrorist organizations, which will have no incentive to listen to him. The paper says that the very nature of the conflict works against unilateralness and calls for, “a return to the kind of negotiations with the Palestinians proposed by then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – ‘If they give, they will receive; if they don’t give, they won’t receive’.” Hatzofeh declares that, “Sharon promised that there would be no retreat under fire and he is not honoring that commitment.” Yediot Ahronot, in its second editorial, comments on the bankruptcy of a local supermarket chain.