To Help Israel, the U.S. Should Extradite Hamas’s Leaders

One reason that it will be hard to destroy Hamas in the Gaza Strip is that the highest echelon of the group’s leadership is directing the war from the comfort of hotel suites in Qatar, where they live under the protection of a U.S. ally. Other senior figures in the movement reside in Lebanon. If Washington really wants to help Israel, and score victories without putting civilian lives at risk, it should demand that these countries turn over these masters of terror. David Levy explains how:

The United States designated Hamas as a terrorist organization in 1995. If extradited, U.S. federal charges against Hamas leaders could include conspiracy to murder Americans overseas. This charge was brought against Ibrahim Suleiman Adnan Adam Harun, who was sentenced to life in prison for conspiring to murder American military personnel in Afghanistan. Also possible is conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists.

The U.S. does not have extradition agreements with Qatar or Lebanon, but it has leverage. In requesting extradition from Qatar, Washington has some influence over Doha. Initially, Doha will almost certainly not accept. However, the U.S. can orchestrate the desired outcome with a well-constructed “carrot and stick” approach. The U.S. has a significant military presence in Qatar, including the Al Udeid Air Base, a crucial regional strategic asset. The future of this base and broader military cooperation, such as access to military sales, could be used as a bargaining chip. Economic levers could offer incentives like future trade deals or impose targeted sanctions against individuals or entities.

Read more at BESA Center

More about: Hamas, Lebanon, Qatar, U.S. Foreign policy

 

Hizballah Is Learning Israel’s Weak Spots

On Tuesday, a Hizballah drone attack injured three people in northern Israel. The next day, another attack, targeting an IDF base, injured eighteen people, six of them seriously, in Arab al-Amshe, also in the north. This second attack involved the simultaneous use of drones carrying explosives and guided antitank missiles. In both cases, the defensive systems that performed so successfully last weekend failed to stop the drones and missiles. Ron Ben-Yishai has a straightforward explanation as to why: the Lebanon-backed terrorist group is getting better at evading Israel defenses. He explains the three basis systems used to pilot these unmanned aircraft, and their practical effects:

These systems allow drones to act similarly to fighter jets, using “dead zones”—areas not visible to radar or other optical detection—to approach targets. They fly low initially, then ascend just before crashing and detonating on the target. The terrain of southern Lebanon is particularly conducive to such attacks.

But this requires skills that the terror group has honed over months of fighting against Israel. The latest attacks involved a large drone capable of carrying over 50 kg (110 lbs.) of explosives. The terrorists have likely analyzed Israel’s alert and interception systems, recognizing that shooting down their drones requires early detection to allow sufficient time for launching interceptors.

The IDF tries to detect any incoming drones on its radar, as it had done prior to the war. Despite Hizballah’s learning curve, the IDF’s technological edge offers an advantage. However, the military must recognize that any measure it takes is quickly observed and analyzed, and even the most effective defenses can be incomplete. The terrain near the Lebanon-Israel border continues to pose a challenge, necessitating technological solutions and significant financial investment.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Hizballah, Iron Dome, Israeli Security