The Israeli military is said to be on high alert ahead of the anniversary of the assassination of a top Islamic Jihad commander by IDF forces in the Gaza Strip last year.
The army killed Bahaa Abu al-Atta in a Gaza airstrike on November 12, 2019, initiating a military campaign in the Hamas-controlled enclave, which the IDF labeled "Operation Black Belt".
Abu al-Atta was considered extremely radical even by the militant group's standards and was responsible for overseeing numerous attacks on Israeli civilian targets, including sniper attacks on IDF troops, launching of drones and thousands of rockets.
Preparedness for a possible escalation is very noticeable at Ben Gurion Airport, where aircraft traffic in the area is being redirected in some instances, which usually happens during cross-border rounds of fighting with militants in Gaza, when the security situation on the southern border is extremely unstable.
The IDF’s Southern Command is also bolstering its forces along the border with Gaza and has deployed Iron Dome batteries for the possibility of rockets being fired from the Strip at Israel.
In addition, the IDF is keeping a close eye on the northern front, where tensions have been high since a Hezbollah operative was killed in an attack in Damascus, which was attributed to Israel.
On Tuesday, the IDF shot down a Hezbollah drone that had infiltrated into Israeli territory. The army said the drone "was under surveillance throughout the whole incident. There was no danger to IDF forces and nearby communities."
The assumption among IDF officials is that the Shi'ite organization is signaling its intent to target Israeli aircrafts in order sabotage the Air Force’s maneuverability in the area.
The IDF’s Judea and Samaria division, responsible for Israeli military operations in the volatile West Bank territories, have also increased their alert levels in the area.
Only on Sunday a Palestinian man tried to stab soldiers at the al-Fawwar junction near Mount Hebron. He was subsequently shot by the soldiers stationed in the area and was wounded in the leg. There were no more casualties in the incident.