Palestinians Prepare New, High-explosive Warheads for Qassam missiles
The Palestinians have smuggled in from Sinai to the Gaza Strip what military sources have told debkafile‘ is “a monstrous amount” of high explosives, to improve the precision and effectiveness of the Qassam missiles fired across the border against Israeli towns and villages.
Our sources reveal the new, lethal explosives come from military production factories in Slovakia and Serbia.
Egyptian special border forces supposed to police the Philadelphi route border have permitted the illicit supplies to roll past them in the last few days without lifting a finger. Once inside the Gaza Strip, the explosives are going straight into Palestinian workshops working around the clock to fit the military-grade TNT and Semtex on their Qassam missiles in place of the home-made, hit-or-miss warheads. These workshops have not been bombed by the Israeli air force for some weeks. The powerfully upgraded Qassam missiles with boosted destructive capabilities are therefore expected to start flying shortly.
In the last three months, some 300 Qassam missiles have been fired from Gaza against Israeli civilian locations, an average of three per day. While disrupting lives and keeping their victims on edge, most have flown wide of the mark, causing no casualties and little damage. Many fall short on the Palestinian side of the Gazan border. In the last two weeks, Palestinian missile crews have become more ambitious and aimed at strategic targets in the Ashkelon area and a big military base south of the city. Four Israeli soldiers were slightly injured last week and that was the sum of the damage.
But once the homemade primitive warheads are replaced with military-grade explosives, the Palestinian terrorists can hope to inflict death and destruction on an entirely different scale. Israeli officers in the southern command have warned the Sharon government that the new explosives not only place the big power station and oil port installations of Ashkelon in great peril, but arm Palestinian suicide bombers with more powerful bomb vests and can be used in car bombs for assaults on a level previously unknown in the Palestinian war against Israel.
debkafile‘s counter-terror sources add that the smuggling of wholesale quantities of war materiel to Gaza was a high-cost operation. Agents purchased the merchandise in Slovakia and the Balkans, underground networks freighted it across the Mediterranean to Sinai and there, more accomplices transported the explosives up to the Gazan border.
Unlike the Karin-A shipment arms cargo seized by Israeli commandos exactly four years ago, no Israeli hand stepped in to snap the chain bringing new tools of war into terrorist hands in the Gaza Strip.