Israel making same mistakes it made before Yom Kippur War

Opinion: In the past, the Jewish state paid the price for ignoring warning signs; doing so now that terror attacks increase in frequency every day, may again lead to a new reality, one with which we are not equipped to deal

Dr. Doron Matza|
The Yom Kippur War was fought on October 1973, and to this day it is one of most devastating military conflicts Israel has had to wage in the years of its existence so far.
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  • The were two missteps by Israel that led to that war.
    3 View gallery
    Wounded IDF troops evacuated from the Sinai front during the Yom Kippur War
    Wounded IDF troops evacuated from the Sinai front during the Yom Kippur War
    Wounded IDF troops evacuated from the Sinai front during the Yom Kippur War
    (Photo: IDF archives)
    The first misstep was Israel's refusal or inability to properly interpret the signs and messages coming out of Egypt and Syria, which could have forewarned Israeli authorities about the coming war. Instead, the officials chose to dismiss them.
    The second misstep was the consensus among government and military officials that Arabs have no intentions to attack Israel, which harmed the effectiveness of intelligence gathering prior to the war.
    These two miscalculations together caused the government to misinterpret military intelligence tabled before it, and strengthen the belief that a war would not break out.
    It’s hard to tell whether the lessons learned during that war were internalized. It seems that analyzing the situation carefully is a sound strategy even now, in October 2022, as violence and terror attacks in the West Bank increase in frequency every single day.
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    עימותים בין כוחות צה"ל לפלסטינים בג'נין
    עימותים בין כוחות צה"ל לפלסטינים בג'נין
    Palestinian militant in Jenin, West Bank
    (Photo: EPA)
    This is happening due to Palestinian Authority washing its hands off of maintaining the stability in its territory, the way it has been doing in past 20 years.
    In the West Bank, this has led to the uprising of young, Islamic radicals from Jenin and Nablus, who wish to rebel and go against the political and economic norms established there over the last two decades.
    This new order in the West Bank is being built on an unwritten agreement between Palestinian leaders in Jerusalem and Ramallah, and serves to destabilize the Palestinian Authority even further, harming its ability to maintain order in these areas.
    October 2022 is very similar to October 1973. In the months preceding the war, Israel could see the signals, such as Egyptian army's military drills, but preferred to interpret these signs through an old and irrelevant world view. Now, in October 2022, Israel is observing what is happening in the West Bank, but prefers to interpret the reality as a temporary escalation or a mini-terror wave.
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    מהומות בחברון
    מהומות בחברון
    Riots in the West Bank
    (Photo: AFP)
    These outdated ways of thinking is an attempt to maintain the understanding Israel has with the Palestinian Authority, which facilitated nearly 20 years of relative calm in Israel, hoping the system would eventually balance itself back to its starting point.
    These past two decades allowed Israel to focus on external threats like Iran and Syria, enjoy economic prosperity, all while ignore the brewing trouble in its back yard.
    Israel is stepping onto the same wrong path it walked prior to the Yom Kippur War, overconfident with success, and not expecting failure.
    The scattered showers of violence that are currently falling in the Palestinian villages and refugee camps may in an instant turn into a flashflood, and Israel will be caught off guard once again, unable to deal with the new reality imposed on it.
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