Iran Is Responsible for the Latest Round of Violence in Gaza

Oct. 30 2018

Last week, it seemed that the ongoing attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip were finally winding down, as Egypt seemed close to brokering a cease-fire between Hamas and Israel. But the weekly demonstration at the Gaza border fence again turned into a deadly riot, and IDF border guards returned fire, killing five. Islamic Jihad, a Gaza-based and Iran-backed terrorist group, then responded by launching a barrage of rockets at Israeli town and villages—to which Jerusalem responded with some 80 airstrikes on Hamas military installations in the Strip. Now calm has returned. Yoni Ben Menachem argues that Iran was directly responsible for the attacks:

Iran is bankrolling all the activities of Islamic Jihad in Gaza and the West Bank and providing it with new weapons. Islamic Jihad is the second-largest organization in the Gaza Strip after Hamas, and there is a very high level of coordination between both groups. According to sources in Gaza, [the group’s leader], Ziad Nahlah, received instructions from Iran to sabotage the understandings with Egypt. . . . Additionally, on a personal level, he is angry with the leaders of Egyptian intelligence because they ignored his new initiative for internal Palestinian reconciliation, and for this reason he is not participating in the talks on reducing hostilities with Israel. . . .

[Another] reason for Iran ordering Islamic Jihad to escalate the situation in Gaza is connected to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Oman on October 26. The Iranians are concerned that Oman will mediate between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and will help President Trump implement his new diplomatic plan for a solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict. . . .

Iran intends to drag Israel into an extensive military conflict in the Gaza Strip through provocations from Islamic Jihad, thus burying any chance of Omani mediation in the political process and keeping the IDF and Israeli air force occupied on the southern front instead of in the north, where Iran is building its military presence in Syria.

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Read more at Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs

More about: Egypt, Gaza Strip, Hamas, Iran, Islamic Jihad, Israel & Zionism, Oman

Condemning Terrorism in Jerusalem—and Efforts to Stop It

Jan. 30 2023

On Friday night, a Palestinian opened fire at a group of Israelis standing outside a Jerusalem synagogue, killing seven and wounding several others. The day before, the IDF had been drawn into a gunfight in the West Bank city of Jenin while trying to arrest members of a terrorist cell. Of the nine Palestinians killed in the raid, only one appears to have been a noncombatant. Lahav Harkov compares the responses to the two events, beginning with the more recent:

President Joe Biden called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to denounce the attack, offer his condolences, and express his commitment to Israel’s security. Other leaders released supportive statements as well. Governments across Europe condemned the attack. Turkey’s foreign ministry did the same, as did Israel’s Abraham Accords partners the UAE and Bahrain. Even Saudi Arabia released a statement against the killing of civilians in Jerusalem.

It feels wrong to criticize those statements. . . . But the condemnations should be full-throated, not spoken out of one side of the mouth while the other is wishy-washy about what it takes to stave off terrorism. These very same leaders and ministries were tsk-tsking at Israel for doing just that only a day before the attacks in Jerusalem.

The context didn’t seem to matter to some countries that are friendly to Israel. It didn’t matter that Israel was trying to stop jihadists from attacking civilians; it didn’t matter that IDF soldiers were attacked on the way.

It’s very easy for some to be sad when Jews are murdered. Yet, at the same time, so many of them are uncomfortable with Jews asserting themselves, protecting themselves, arming themselves against the bloodthirsty horde that would hand out bonbons to celebrate their deaths. It’s a reminder of how important it is that we do just that, and how essential the state of Israel is.

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Read more at Lahav’s Newsletter

More about: Jerusalem, Palestinian terror