Ron Ben-Yishai

Israel's message to Hamas

Op-ed: Abu-Sisi abduction signal to Hamas that Israel knows what goes on in Gaza

The indictment served against Palestinian engineer Dirar Abu-Sisi is a fascinating document. It makes it clear that the accused cooperated with his interrogators and did not spare details that enable Israel not only to get a grasp of his work in Hamas' service, but also learn the modus operandi and strategic aims of the group's military wing.


Indeed, this indictment is a must-read for any Israeli or citizen of the world interested in the subject of terrorism in general and Hamas in particular.


 By reading through the seemingly dry details presented in the indictment, one can draw some lessons and insights that are not explicitly noted, as they are irrelevant to the legal procedure. One insight has to do with the circumstances that facilitated Abu-Sisi's interrogation and trial in Israel. However, this aspect is under a gag order.


One insight that is clear has to do with Abu-Sisi's status in Hamas. The indictment shows that he was not a simple technical aide in the missile and rocket production effort, but rather, a man who voluntarily took a position at the top of Hamas' terror wing, initiating and leading the group's military academy. This venture aimed at granting Izz al-Din al-Qassam new, improved strategic capabilities vis-à-vis Israel.


2 interesting lessons

The indictment also offers two interesting lessons. One is that targeted eliminations are a highly effective means for thwarting terror attack plans. According to the indictment, the assassination of top Hamas figure Adnan al-Ghoul in 2004 delayed the development of long-term Qassam rockets by a year and a half.


The second lesson highlights the significance of IDF and Shin Bet presence in areas that produce terror against Israel. It is clear that Israel knew for a while now about Abu-Sisi's intensive activity in Hamas' service, and there is no doubt that had IDF forces been present in Gaza today, he would have been taken in for interrogation a while ago.


We can also conclude that Israel did not make too much of an effort to hide Abu-Sisi's arrest after he was safely in Israeli territory. It appears that the Shin Bet and IDF made sure to allow him to call his wife and inform her that he was abducted, thereby signaling to Hamas and its leaders that what happened to the hard-working engineer may one day happen to them and anyone who collaborates with them.


However, the main message that apparently worries Hamas is that Israel knows much more than what is detailed in the indictment. This is apparently also the main benefit Israel gained from bringing the engineer to its territory.



פרסום ראשון: 04.06.11, 17:48
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