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Report El Fatah Trying to Establish Underground Cells in Israel-held Territories

July 19, 1968
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

El Fatah, the Arab guerrilla organization, was trying to establish underground cells in Israel-held territories because the method of bringing raiders across the river from bases in Jordan had proved too costly, a military spokesman reported today. An El Fatah courier, one of five arrested in Ramallah several days ago, was found to have money in his possession and instructions to set up El Fatah cells in the region.

Israeli patrols all along the cease-fire demarcation line have managed to halt most El Fatah sabotage and terrorist forays before they get started. Only yesterday 13 saboteurs were killed in a clash near Jericho a few hours after they crossed the Jordan River. El Fatah instructors at training camps in Syria were reported last week to be giving recruits special river fording exercises but apparently without much success. One recruit told his Israeli captors that he contracted arthritis from being immersed in cold water.

As El Fatah losses continued to mount, so have the accounts of their “victories” over Israelis. El Fatah announced a few days ago that they had killed 600 Israelis and wounded 300 in a single month. They also claimed to have destroyed or damaged every bridge in Israel. Israeli security officials dismissed these claims as “oriental daydreams.”

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