Hamas Has Started a New Phase of Its War with Israel https://mosaicmagazine.com/picks/israel-zionism/2021/05/hamas-has-started-a-new-phase-of-its-war-with-israel/

May 12, 2021 | Yoav Limor
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After a prolonged period of sporadic unrest and acts of terror, the situation in Israel has erupted this week. Almost nonstop rocket fire from Gaza began on Monday, with Hamas firing some 100 rockets at Tel Aviv in a short span of time last night, leaving at least three dead. Meanwhile riots have broken out in several cities, and an Arab mob in the city of Lod burned three synagogue and two schools, amidst other damage to persons and property. Yoav Limor, assessing the situation, explains that Hamas has renewed its ongoing war on the Jewish state:

Since the start of Ramadan, Hamas has been systematically building its case with regard to Jerusalem, in an attempt to seize ownership of the unrest [already going on there]. It began by launching rockets at the Gaza envelope communities two weeks ago, and continued with warnings sent last week by [the commander of its military], Mohammad Deif. The ultimatum issued by the organization on Monday—the removal of all police officers from the Temple Mount and [the Jerusalem neighborhood of] Sheikh Jarrah—which was backed by the rocket fire, was the climax. By doing so, Hamas sought to heat things up in the city, and also to signal to Israel and the entire region: we make the calls in Jerusalem. Any damage to it will also see a response from Gaza.

This is an equation that Israel cannot live with. Not only because the residents of the Gaza envelope (and beyond) must not be made hostage to Hamas’s whims, but because the organization never had nor should have any status or ownership in Jerusalem. Its efforts to become the patron of the Palestinian cause and of Jerusalem—part of which lies in the cancellation of the elections for the Palestinian Authority—are a tangible danger. If left unchecked, they could end up accelerating the organization’s attempts to take over the West Bank as well.

Therefore, Hamas leaves Israel no choice but to respond—and to respond disproportionately. The IDF had already wanted to respond forcefully two weeks ago, but was stopped by the political echelon that then preferred the attempts to calm the area, in the hope of getting through Ramadan in peace. Now, . . . Israel has no choice but to exhaust [military] efforts as much as possible.

Read more on Israel Hayom: https://www.israelhayom.com/opinions/hamas-declaration-of-war/

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