The Recent Terrorist Attack in Be’er Sheva Didn’t Happen in a Vacuum

On Tuesday, a Bedouin citizen of Israel drove his car into one person and stabbed several others in the Negev city of Be’er Sheva, leaving four dead. The perpetrator was unusual in that he hailed from neither eastern Jerusalem nor the West Bank, and his sympathies lay with Islamic State (IS) rather than Palestinian organizations. But, writes Nadav Shragai, this should not be treated as an isolated event:

[T]his was not the first time an IS sympathizer killed Jews in Israel. [Such] terrorists, however, also do not fit the usual profile of the “lone wolf.” Most of them are over thirty, married with children, and hold respectable jobs, making them more financially secure. Many of them have become radicalized after falling under IS’s spell on social media or in mosques.

However, we should not be fooled by the fact that Tuesday’s terrorist attack was carried out by an IS terrorist. . . . The success of one attack spurs extremists in other organizations to stage similar attacks, known as copycat or inspiration attacks, and this phenomenon is of great concern for the defense establishment.

Israel has experienced seven stabbing attacks over the past three weeks. . . . Waves of terrorism are not created in a vacuum and they have the potential to evolve into a full-blown intifada. This is the terrorist groups’ way of employing the “reap what you sow” method, by which what is sown in terror is reaped in negotiations; and the harder you hit the Israeli home front, the less resolve we can show in negotiations.

We cannot be fooled again. We must remember that no good can come of making goodwill gestures during waves of terrorism and that there is little if any room to show consideration for sectors that breed terrorists, be they from the West Bank or the Negev.

Read more at Israel Hayom

More about: Bedouin, ISIS, Israeli Arabs, Palestinian terror

An American Withdrawal from Iraq Would Hand Another Victory to Iran

Since October 7, the powerful network of Iran-backed militias in Iraq have carried out 120 attacks on U.S. forces stationed in the country. In the previous year, there were dozens of such attacks. The recent escalation has led some in the U.S. to press for the withdrawal of these forces, whose stated purpose in the country is to stamp out the remnants of Islamic State and to prevent the group’s resurgence. William Roberts explains why doing so would be a mistake:

American withdrawal from Iraq would cement Iran’s influence and jeopardize our substantial investment into the stabilization of Iraq and the wider region, threatening U.S. national security. Critics of the U.S. military presence argue that [it] risks a regional escalation in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Iran. However, in the long term, the U.S. military has provided critical assistance to Iraq’s security forces while preventing the escalation of other regional conflicts, such as clashes between Turkey and Kurdish groups in northern Iraq and Syria.

Ultimately, the only path forward to preserve a democratic, pluralistic, and sovereign Iraq is through engagement with the international community, especially the United States. Resisting Iran’s takeover will require the U.S. to draw international attention to the democratic backsliding in the country and to be present and engage continuously with Iraqi civil society in military and non-military matters. Surrendering Iraq to Iran’s agents would not only squander our substantial investment in Iraq’s stability; it would greatly increase Iran’s capability to threaten American interests in the Levant through its influence in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon.

Read more at Providence

More about: Iran, Iraq, U.S. Foreign policy