Earlier this week the head of the IDF’s Intelligence Directorate, Aharon Haliva, said the next major war would be the result of Israel’s enemies failing to understand the message it sent in the recent Gaza conflict.
Israel kicked off Operation Shield and Arrow with a stunning targeted strike that took out the three leaders of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) in Gaza within a matter of minutes. The message to terrorists everywhere was that Israel knows exactly where they are at all times, and can at any time reach out and strike them.
In short, that taking part in Iran’s coordinated efforts against Israel would get them killed.
A top PIJ official on Tuesday suggested that the terror group did not learn that lesson, and that, as Haliva fears, it is preparing to make a big mistake.
In an interview with the Arabic newspaper Al-Hiya, PIJ Secretary General Ziad al-Nakhalah attributed the success of the Israeli strike to the slain commanders failing to take simple security precautions. In particular, they were freely using their mobile phones.
“The enemy did not penetrate our ranks and our leaders were not eliminated due to some special capability of the enemy. Our men simply did not follow safety procedures. The cell phone is like a mobile spy,” he said, indicated that was how the three targeted PIJ commanders were found and their assassinations so closely coordinated.
Al-Nakhalah also stressed that the strike, and the elimination of several more PIJ commanders in the days that followed had failed to cause confusion in the organizations ranks, “because they were all immediately replaced by their deputies.”
By his assessment, despite the loss of certain individuals, the situation for PIJ is “better than ever” as it continues on the “long road of fighting the Zionist project.”
In other words, Israel’s enemies are not deterred. Individual deaths mean little to them.
Something is looming
Following the recent Gaza mini-war, Hezbollah’s war games on the northern border last week and Haliva’s calculated warnings this week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday convened his security cabinet.
Netanyahu emphasized that Israel had met its goals in the Gaza campaign, and that it remains prepared to “surprise all our enemies” should they test the Jewish state.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant added that Israel must be prepared for a lengthy and difficult conflict if the situation escalates on the northern border.
Opposition leader Benny Gantz also warned that any enemy who assumes Israel is weakened by internal disputes is making a serious mistake.
Regional Arab media quickly picked up on all these statements and suggested that Israel was planning to do something, soon.
In response to those reports, Iran threatened an unprecedented attack on Israel should it dare to strike nuclear facilities in the Islamic Republic.
Last week, a senior Israeli government minister said that it was time for the IDF to take the fight to Iran.
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