Elior Levy
Elior Levy
Hamas flags during victory march in wake of terror attack in Jerusalem and Palestinian who carried out the attack

Israel must avoid falling into Hamas' trap

Analysis: Hamas hopes to instigate violence in Jerusalem and West Bank to force the PA back off from its offensive against terror group's operatives, understanding Israel will stand down as long as Gaza remains quiet

Elior Levy |
Published: 11.22.21, 14:41
The tirade of comments, social media posts and general jubilation expressed by the Hamas terror group from its Gaza headquarters in the wake of the deadly shooting attack in Jerusalem on Sunday lacked only a claim of responsibility for the killing of Eliyahu David Kay.
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  • Hamas reveled in the murderer's affiliation to the Islamist group but did not claim his attack was in the service of the terror group.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    הפגנה ותהלוכה לכיוון בית המחבל שביצע את פיגוע הירי בעיר העתיקה ירושלים בו נרצח אלי קיי ז"ל
    הפגנה ותהלוכה לכיוון בית המחבל שביצע את פיגוע הירי בעיר העתיקה ירושלים בו נרצח אלי קיי ז"ל
    Hamas flags during victory march in wake of terror attack in Jerusalem and Palestinian who carried out the attack
    Their reaction expresses the group's ambitions to destabilize the security in the West Bank and in Jerusalem as much as possible, while maintaining calm in the Gaza Strip.
    The Gaza rulers know they can act with impunity because Israel has given its unwritten consent to their behavior.
    Understanding a deadly attack in the sensitive Old City of Jerusalem is far more significant than a similar act carried out in some border crossings in the West Bank, Hamas desires as much chaos as possible in the capital as long as the area under their control remains quiet.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    מבצע של הרשות הפלסטינית להשבת המשילות בג'נין
    מבצע של הרשות הפלסטינית להשבת המשילות בג'נין
    Palestinian Authority security forces clash with militants in the Jenin refugee camp during a military operation to assert their authority there
    The Islamist group itself is in a precarious state in the West Bank. Over the weekend, Palestinian Authority security forces launched a military operation in and around the city of Jenin in order to disarm rogue militants and reassert its authority in the area.
    As a result, any attempt by Hamas to execute a show of strength would be dealt with severely.
    But, an uprising of Palestinians in the West Bank would contribute to Hamas' strength and force the PA to back down.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    פעילות לוחמי צה"ל ברמאללה
    פעילות לוחמי צה"ל ברמאללה
    IDF troops prepare to breach a Ramallah apartment in search of terror suspects in 2018
    (Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
    In the meantime, Israel's defense establishment is concerned that Sunday's fatal attack could be an inspiration to others, prompting further acts of terror, as was the case in past years.
    Israeli intelligence agencies are well versed in locating Palestinians set on launching attacks, and are quick to arrest them before they are able to execute their plans. Many such arrests could be expected in the coming days, which will foil any attempts by lone actors.
    But statements made by Israeli politicians, threatening to change the long-lasting status quo between Israel and the Muslim endowment around the volatile Temple Mount, could contribute to further trouble.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    מהומות במזרח ירושלים
    מהומות במזרח ירושלים
    Palestinians riot and clash with police in May in East Jerusalem
    (Photo: AFP)
    Statements calling for police body scanners to be placed in the Old City, as was attempted in 2017 by the Netanyahu government, would surely cause an outbreak of violence that would play right into the hands of Hamas.
    Israel would do well to act quietly and resolutely to ensure the security of the capital, restored for the most part after the May conflict on the Gaza border, and avoid bombastic statements that would only cause harm.





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