Sderot, less than a mile from Gaza, has borne the brunt of Palestinian rocket attacks since 2001, killing 13 people, wounding dozens, causing millions of dollars in damage, and disrupting daily life and ruining the economy. From mid-June 2007 to mid-February 2008, 771 rockets and 857 mortar bombs have been fired at Sderot and the western Negev.
Sderot lies one kilometer from the Gaza Strip and town of Beit Hanoun. Since the beginning of the Second Intifada in October 2000, the city has been under constant rocket fire from Qassam rockets launched by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Despite the imperfect aim of these homemade projectiles, they have caused deaths and injuries, as well as significant damage to homes and property, psychological distress and emigration from the city. The Israeli government has installed a "Red Dawn" (צבע אדום) alarm system to warn citizens of impending rocket attacks, although its effectiveness has been questioned. Citizens only have 15 seconds to reach shelter after the sounding of the alarm. Thousands of Qassam rockets have been launched since Israel's disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005.
In May 2007, a significant increase in shelling from Gaza prompted the temporary evacuation of thousands of residents. By November 232007, 6,311 rockets had fallen on the city. Yediot Ahronoth reported that during the summer of 2007, 3,000 of the city's 22,000 residents (comprised mostly of the city's key upper and middle class residents) left for other areas, out of Qassam rocket range. Arcadi Gaydamak has in recent years supported relief programs for residents who cannot leave. On December 12,2007, after more than 20 rockets landed in the Sderot area in a single day, including a direct hit to one of the main avenues, Sderot mayor Eli Moyal announced his resignation, citing the government's failure to halt the rocket attacks. Moyal was persuaded to retract his resignation.
A number of Palestinian Arabs from the Gaza Strip were resettled in Sderot beginning in 1997 after cooperating with the Shin Bet.
According to CBS, there are 14 schools and 3,578 students in the city. They are spread out as eleven elementary schools and 2,099 elementary school students, and six high schools and 1,479 high school students. 56.5% of 12th grade students were entitled to a matriculation certificate in 2001. Sapir Academic College and the Hesder Yeshiva of Sderot are located in Sderot.
Sderot shoppers: Nowhere to be found. No longer bombarded by missiles from Gaza, the border town is still impoverished financially
Sep 28, 2010; BENJAMIN JOFFE-WALT BENJAMIN JOFFE-WALT, The Media Line Jerusalem Post 09-28-2010 Sderot shoppers: Nowhere to be found. No...
In Israel, embattled Sderot comes back to life after rocket barrages of Gaza war; Sderot, Israel, was practically a ghost town a year ago, as daily rocket attacks from Gaza drove residents away. Today...(World GRAPHIC: http:/ / newsservice.csmonitor.com/ var/ ezflow_site/ storage/ images/ media/ images/ 1231-sderot-01-600x400/ 7168639-1-eng-US/ 1231-Sderot-01-600x400.jpg BY: Ilene R. Prusher/ The Christian Science Monitor CAPTION: David Bouskila)(the mayor of Sderot)(the town in southern Israel regularly hit by Qassam rockets leading up to the war in Gaza a year ago)(has a lamp fashioned from a rocket in his office. GRAPHIC: http:/ / newsservice.csmonitor.com/ var/ ezflow_site/ storage/ images/ media/ images/ 1231-sderot-02-400/ 7168735-1-eng-US/ 1231-Sderot-02-400.jpg BY: Ilene R. Prusher/ The Christian Science Monitor CAPTION: At the Chopin salon in Sderot)(hair designers tried to make light of constantly being under threat of rockets)(by turning it into a fashion statement.)
Dec 31, 2009; Byline: Ilene R. Prusher/The Christian Science Monitor CAPTION: David Bouskila, the mayor of Sderot, the town in southern...