I was awakened early this morning by a series of window-rattling explosions, interspersed with rapid machine-gun fire. It reminded me eerily of the days of the Jabaliya seige, when Israeli forces battered the northern Gaza Strip refugee camp. Though we live in the middle of Gaza City, on quiet mornings we could hear the merciless pounding of tank shells and Apache missiles. But today, there was obviously no seige on Jabaliya, thank God. Hopefully those days will soon end, at least for Gazans.
That leaves open the question of those mystery morning explosions. I learned later that Hamas held late-night training for its fighters in Jabliya. Since I see no reason why they need to train fighters right now, I interpreted this as a show of force to the PA's corrupt security forces-that they are not going anywhere, anytime soon. Still, the training did not take place in the morning, at least I don't think, and would defniitely not have caused such loud explosions. In the end, my guess is that structures were perhaps being demolished in the nearby Netzarim settlement. But for now it will remain a mystery.