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September 05, 2002

600 Kg Car bomb Is Arafat's Gift to Israelis for the Jewish New Year
(Ha'aretz) Security forces prevented what a senior police officer described as one of the biggest terror bombing attempts since the start of the intifada, when they intercepted a car in the early hours of Thursday morning filled with 600 kilograms of explosives near Pardes Hana, not far from Hadera. Two cars - an Isuzu van and a Golf - were captured at around 2 A.M. after they aroused the suspicion of civilian volunteers serving with the police, because they were traveling very fast at about two o'clock in the morning, on a winding dirt road leading from the West Bank into Israel. After police at a roadblock ordered them to stop, the cars continued driving for a short distance and the occupants then jumped out and fled. Police then discovered the explosives in the van, along with a cellular phone and two large containers filled with fuel and metal fragments.

The cellular phone was likely to be used to detonate the bomb and the second vehicle as a getaway car.
The two cars were headed in the general direction of the town of Hadera, where several Palestinian suicide bombings and shooting attacks have taken place in the past two years.

"This was one of the biggest (successes in) foiling an attack that we know of," said Borovsky. "We did not have any specific warnings, but our working assumption is that the eve of a Jewish holiday is a time when terror attacks are likely." David Baker, an official at the Prime Minister's Office, said the car bomb was the Palestinians' gift to Israelis for the Jewish New Year. "A New Year tragedy has been averted and many Israeli lives have been saved," he said.