(Jerusalem) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel is at war.
Israel declared a "state of alert for war" in southern Israel this morning, where rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip in a surprise attack from Hamas. Palestinian militants have also crossed into Israel, and Israeli media have reported gun battles between Palestinian fighters and security forces. Over 250 casualties have been reported so far, and 22 deaths.
In a speech this morning, Netanyahu said Israel's first goal is to "cleanse the area of the enemy forces." The second goal is to "exact a huge price from the enemy."