Day 16 of Operation Protective Edge

As we enter Day 16 of this bitter Israel-Hamas conflict, British carrier easyJet has just become the latest airline to cancel flights to Israel in light of the threat of rockets from the Gaza Strip.

American carriers, as well as Turkish, Lufthansa, KLM, and other airlines have also suspended flights.

An Army Radio report says that Israel may open its minor international airport at Ovda, located 60 kilometers north of Eilat in the Negev Desert and at least 150 km from the Gaza Strip, as an alternative point of entry for international flights to Israel.

A rocket hit near Ben Gurion International Airport earlier on Wednesday, prompting many international carriers to cease flights to Israel for the next 24 hours, and for the FAA to bar US flights to Israel as well.

A couple of hours ago, meanwhile, Israeli planes bombed the home of Hamas military commander Muhammad Deif in Khan Younis.

Deif has been in hiding for years, and no longer lives in the building.

Bound to a wheelchair after losing his arms and legs in a July 2006 Israeli Air Force strike on a Gaza home where he was hiding — and an eye in a helicopter strike on his car in September 2002 — Deif still officially commands Hamas’s military apparatus from his hiding spots. He is a top Israeli target.

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