In this week’s news – Assassinations, protests and a more united Jerusalem.
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In this week’s news – Assassinations, protests and a more united Jerusalem. Stay tuned.
IRAN’S GENERAL SOLEIMANI TO BE ASSASSINATED
I want to start this week’s broadcast with a scripture:
Dan 11:40 And at the end-time, the king of the south shall butt at him. And the king of the north shall come against him like a tempest, with chariots and with horsemen and with many ships.
This scripture, Daniel 11:40, is relevant to this week’s news if the King of the North is Iran and the King of the South is Saudi Arabia. You’ve heard me say that Iran and Russia – who are the same people, the Persian people from ancient times – have created what is now being called the 4+1 Coalition.
The King of the South is headed by Saudi Arabia and their Arab League allies and they are backed by the United States.
The Kings of the North and South have divided the Middle East along an axis running east and west. This has created a north Middle East and a south Middle East. Conveniently, the north Middle East is comprised of Shi’ite Muslim nations while the south Middle East is comprised of Sunni Muslim nations.
Israel is in the territory of the King of the South – Saudi Arabia – and is now an ally of Saudi Arabia. As scripture tells us, when the King of the North attacks the King of the South, Israel and Jordan will be attacked, as well. The King of the North cannot get to Saudi Arabia easily without going through Jordan, anyway. And since Israel and Iran are natural enemies, and the United States now has a permanent military installation in Israel, Iran will attack Israel for Israel’s sake, but also for the United States sake. For Iran, it will be like killing two birds – two satans – with one stone.
President Donald Trump seems to want war with Iran. The fact that he built a military installation in Israel, and has continued to provoke Iran, suggests that Trump is trying to instigate an attack on Israel by Iran.
This week, the way President Donald Trump provoked Iran was by giving Israel the green light to assassinate the senior Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani who is responsible for coordinating military activity on behalf of Lebanon, Syria and Iraq. These three nations, along with Iran, constitute the 4+1 Coalition. The armies of these four northern Middle East Shi’ite nations is commanded by one man at the behest of Iran.
For the past 20 years or so, Qassem Soleimani has commanded the Quds Force — the branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards responsible for military and clandestine operations outside of the Islamic Republic. Soleimani is a key figure in efforts to prop up Syrian President Bashar Assad and to enable him to retake cities and towns from rebel groups during his country’s ongoing civil war. He is also responsible for providing military aid to the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah and the Palestinian Hamas in Gaza — both of which are committed to the destruction of Israel — as well as to Shia and Kurdish groups in Iraq.
Thursday’s report by al-Jarida, which has been known to publish improbable-sounding stories about Israel, was widely picked up by Israeli media.
There was no immediate reaction to the report from Jerusalem or Washington.
Three years ago, Israel came close to assassinating Soleimani near Damascus, al-Jarida quoted unnamed source as saying, but the Americans – i.e. the Obama administration – tipped off the Iranians during an intense disagreement between Washington and Jerusalem. The Obama administration was so focused on securing the 2015 Iran nuclear accord that it chose to overlook, and even obstruct, efforts to clamp down on Iranian-backed terror organizations.
The Trump and Netanyahu administrations see eye to eye on Iran. This past week, the two countries signed a joint memorandum of understanding laying the groundwork for full cooperation to deal with Iran’s nuclear drive, its missile programs and its other threatening activities, an Israeli TV report said.
The source was quoted by the paper as saying that Soleimani’s assassination would serve both countries’ interests and that US authorities have given Israel the go-ahead to carry it out.
IFP News writes that Qassem Soleimani is the most powerful General in the Middle East. Didier François, a senior French political analyst, has praised the key role played by Iran’s IRGC Quds Force Commander Major General Qassem Soleimani in the Middle East developments in 2017.
Speaking to the French radio station, Europe 1, François said, “Whether it is in Iraq, in Syria or even in Lebanon, in fact in all the Middle East, nobody is more powerful than General Qassem Soleimani.”
He is the chief of the external operations of the IRGC, the famous guardians of the Islamic Revolution formed after the 1979 Revolution by Ayatollah Khomeini and who are always the armed wing of Iran. After summer 2014 when the fight against ISIS began, General Soleimani was tasked by Iran to help coordinate the anti-terror campaign. He is a kind of super-military advisor who has done perfectly well in this task since he is actually in the front line to stop the columns of extremists who swept from Syria on Iraq. Since then, he has actively participated in all major battles against the self-proclaimed Caliphate, beginning with that of Mosul. Where all the anti-ISIS forces had to try to coordinate their efforts, we could sometimes see General Soleimani meet other military advisers”.
This is now a man to mess with. But last week, CIA Director Mike Pompeo sent a letter to Qassem Soleimani warning him not to attack “U.S. interests” in the region, particularly Iraq.
General Soleimani was so scared by Pompeo’s letter that he just went ahead and published it in Iran without even reading it.
“I will not accept your letter, nor will I read it,” Soleimani reportedly said. “I have nothing to do with these people.”
Pompeo’s reaction? “It didn’t break my heart, to be honest with you,” he cracked.
Pompeo’s effort to deliver a warning directly to an adversary’s military commander was unusual, maybe unprecedented, past top CIA officials and experts said.
Yes, both unusual and unprecedented. Why? Because we live in extraordinary times and YHVH is putting in these peoples’ hearts to do what will get the job done – the job of settling the 4,000 year old question of who will inherit the Commonwealth of Israel.
Most experts doubt Soleimani will cease efforts to damage “U.S. interests” in the Middle East or elsewhere, despite Pompeo’s warning. Especially with its support for Lebanon’s Shiite Hezbollah forces, which have vowed to destroy Israel, Iran’s strategic objective is to undermine American power anywhere it can… Starting with Israel.
It’s not clear whether Pompeo acted alone or with the blessing of President Donald Trump, who has relentlessly criticized Iran.
Now listen to this: Clint Watts, a former FBI counter-terrorism special agent, doubts the CIA chief’s initiative was coordinated with the White House. “We weren’t good at synchronizing in other administrations, but this one seems the least put together I’ve ever seen,” he said, pointing to Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner’s free-wheeling engagement with the Saudis on a range of issues, including an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal and the president’s public criticism of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Staying on message, of course, has been a central problem for the administration. Officials never know what the impulsive Trump is going to tweet during one of his early morning fusillades, not even those responsible for the most sensitive foreign policy and military challenges. Putting on his best team-player smile at the forum Saturday night, Pompeo said the president’s tweets “help us.”
After receiving the threat from the CIA, Soleimani threatened the US army through a verbal letter, sent via a Russian officer.
Qassem Soleimani warned the US commander to leave Syria “or else”! Reliable sources were informed that the General Haj Qassem Soleimani warned the commander of US forces in Syria to leave the country to the last soldier “or the doors of hell will open up”.
“My message to the US military command: when the battle against ISIS ends, no American soldier will be tolerated in Syria. I advise you to leave by your own will or you will be forced to it”, said Soleimani to a Russian officer.
Soleimani asked the Russian officer to deliver his message to the US commander. He said that the US forces will be considered as forces of occupation if they decide to stay in north-east Syria where Kurds and Arab tribes cohabit together.
According to the local news South Front, the Russian authorities are not against the US presence in Syria, but Iran has a clear position and has decided not to abandon the Syrian President alone to face the US forces, if they stay behind.
Will there be a battle between the United States and Iran before the King of the North strikes the King of the South and Israel?
Isa 17:1 The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.
Isa 17:2 The cities of Aroer are forsaken: they shall be for flocks, which shall lie down, and none shall make them afraid.
Isa 17:3 The fortress also shall cease from Ephraim, and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall be as the glory of the children of Israel, saith the LORD of hosts.
Isaiah 17 seems to say there are no winners in this war over Damascus. The Syrians will be defeated (which means the Iranians will probably step in to take over governance of Syria), but also ‘Ephraim’ will be run out – the fortress will cease. In other words, there will no longer be a U.S. military base in Syria.
The phrase, “the glory of the children of Israel” literally means a ‘military campaign’. The only place left to the United States to have a military base after this could be Israel. That base already exists in Israel by order of President Trump.
So, it appears that this battle could precede the King of the North’s attack.
Soleimani’s letter to the US clearly indicated the promise of ‘surprise measures’ against the US: “You shall face soldiers and forces you have not experienced before in Syria and you will leave the country sooner or later”.
Russia revealed to the US that Iran will stay in Syria as long as President Bashar al-Assad decides. Assad has insisted to liberate the entire territory from all forces without exception.
Bloomberg reported earlier in December that Iran is ready to back the Palestinians. General Soleimani
made the offer to the Palestinians in Gaza. Other forces in the region are ready to defend the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, but Soleimani did not identify them.
Soleimani spoke a day after the head of Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement, Hassan Nasrallah, called on all “resistance” groups in the region to come up with a unified strategy to take back Jerusalem.
Jerusalem will be both the excuse and the scriptural reason for the 4+1 Coalition to attack, but another reason for the King of the North to attack Israel is to settle the 1400-year issue over Mohamed’s succession. The Shi’ites and Sunnis have been fighting over this since Mohamed died.
The King of the North is a Shi’ite coming to win a war after never having won even one battle. All ten Caliphates throughout history have been Sunni, but this 11th Caliphate will be Shi’ite and it will go global. Esau’s descendants intend to rule over Jacob’s descendants – both Jews and Christians.
The OK to assassinate General Soleimani is the United States and Israel’s response to Iran’s declaration, last week, that East Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and General Qassem Soleimani’s declaration of military support to the Palestinians after Trump’s December announcement that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital, among all the other war of words that has happened between the three parties over the last four years, beginning with Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.
Aside from the reports that the U.S. and Israel have agreed on the need to assassinate General Soleimani, another deal has been reached between the two nations. The Hill is reporting, this week, that the U.S. and Israeli officials reached a closed-door cooperation agreement on how to deal with Iran via an agreement, which was reportedly signed on Dec. 12 at the White House. The agreement aims to counter Iran’s missile and nuclear programs.
The agreement would translate President Trump’s Oct. 13 speech decertifying the Iran deal into steps on the ground. The two countries have reportedly decided to set up joint teams to combat Iran in the region.
Not only have the U.S. and Israel decided to kill the Iranian General leading the 4+1 Coalition, but they are preparing for a military offensive against Iran. The agreement sets up teams to work on each agenda.
One joint team would grapple with Iran’s ties to the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, as well as Iranian activity in Syria. The second team will deal with Iran’s nuclear goals, while the third team will specialize in dealing with Iran’s missile program. The fourth team is designed to control preparations for any escalation from Hezbollah or Tehran.
Not only are the U.S. and Israel looking out for their own interests in the Middle East, but they are protecting Saudi Arabia. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley ripped into Tehran earlier this month when she presented what she said was “undeniable” evidence that Iran was supplying weapons to Yemeni rebels in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions.
Iran’s proxy fighting force in Yemen is the Houthis. They are a well-supplied and well-trained force that has been making incursions into Saudi Arabia along its southern border via missiles.
The Houthis have launched missiles into Saudi Arabia several times in the past couple of months. Saudi Arabia struck Yemen this week, killing 23. Monday’s strikes also wounded eight others.
LACK OF U.S. PRESS COVERAGE
The U.S. press is largely ignoring the threatened assassination of General Qassem Soleimani. The most notable press outlets running the story are the Times of Israel and Middle East Eye. Most of the press outlets carrying the information are small, unknowns like AMN and Daily Sabah.
See the photos of my searches for this story at Fox and CNN on Beast Watch News dot com.
American Thinker, Breitbart and Hot Air each carried an article on January 2, 2018, but these were not original. Each article was a reiteration of Times of Israel or Al-Jarida which fed the Middle East articles. Only 8 articles carried this news on the entire internet. Not even PressTV, the Middle East’s largest news outlet, carried the story. Why?
“Press TV (stylised PRESSTV) is a 24-hour English language news and documentary network, affiliated with Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB). IRIB is state-owned but independent of the Iranian government in its management, and is the only legal TV and radio broadcaster inside Iran.”
So Iran’s biggest news outlet didn’t publish the agreement between Trump and Netanyahu to assassinate General Soleimani. The reason is probably because the Obama administration was the first to warn Iran of this assassination almost 4 years ago. It seems the threat is falling on deaf Iranian ears.
But why is the U.S. press ignoring this? Probably for the same reason. But this development will create exactly the surprise needed, as hinted at in Daniel 11, when the Iranian provocation comes to a head.
PROTESTS IN IRAN
The U.S. and Israeli press was on top of the protests happening in Iran. According to JPost, Israel and Saudi Arabia appear to have pinned hopes on starting the destruction of Iran through this past week’s protests. Iran has accused Saudi Arabia of fomenting the protests. Iran vowed there would be strong punishment against Riyadh.
Western media has tried to spin the Iranian uprising as a bottom-up revolt by people who feel they’ve been ignored by a corrupt elite. The issues and the faces in the street are very different from those of the populist movements that swept the United States and Europe in 2016, but you sense a resonance: “Make Iran Great Again” and “Iran First.”
“This is a nationwide uprising taking place all over Iran,” argues Alireza Nader, a senior policy analyst at the Rand Corp. who has been monitoring the protests since they began. “The government has been taken by surprise, and the security forces have been slow to act.” It’s a revolt of the mostazafin, or dispossessed, Nader says, but also of the urban middle class.
This revolt probably won’t topple the Islamic Republic, but it certainly has deepened its problems, showing that Iran’s revolutionary adventures in the Middle East carry a cost at home.
President Trump’s enthusiasm for the protesters has bubbled over in his tweets. Explains a senior administration official: Dissent shows Iran has “deep structural problems” and a corrupt economic system, dominated by the Revolutionary Guard Corps, that is “unsustainable.” The White House sensibly plans to work with allies to hold Iran accountable for any violence against its citizens. The senior official said: “Iran is now encountering the cost of the choices they’ve made. That’s not going away until they make different choices.”
Like most social upheavals, this one was obvious only in hindsight. But there were hints. In April, as moderate President Hassan Rouhani was on his way to reelection, voters clearly wanted economic growth. Asked about their income levels, 54 percent of Iranians surveyed by the Toronto-based Iran Poll answered either “I hardly get by” or “It is very difficult to get by.” Last year, Gallup reported that Iran ranked third on its Negative Experience Index, after Iraq and South Sudan.
Partly, this is a revolution of rising expectations. Iranians had hoped that Rouhani and the nuclear deal he championed with the West would bring new investment, jobs and the dynamic, modern life Iranians want. But this hasn’t happened. Frustrated people get angry, and their rage eventually surges into the streets.
The protesters denounce both Rouhani’s reformers and the hard-liners led by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. They come from Iran’s equivalents of “red states” and “blue states” alike. On videos, you can see protesters taunting two of the regime’s most sacred cows, Khamenei and Gen. Qassem Soleimani, head of the Quds Force.
As U.S. officials have tried to reconstruct events of the past week, they see a spontaneous, diffuse movement that ignited like sparks on dry tinder.
In my estimation, Trump’s giddy joy over Iran’s internal problems that “ignited like sparks on dry tinder” smacks of the same kind of activity that sparked the Arab Uprising in December 2010. We later learned that Obama threw the match into the tinder. Did Trump throw this match?
Iran blames the Saudis for the protests. The Secretary of the Islamic Republic’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), Ali Shamkhani, said, “The Saudis are part of a network who have launched a war against Iran on the Internet. Based on our analyses, around 27 percent of the new hashtags against Iran are generated by the Saudi government”.
The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Rear Admiral and former minister of Defense (1997-2005), Shamkhani accused United Kingdom and US along with Saudi Arabia, noting that a large number of hashtags in relation with recent “riots” in Iran are generated in the United States, Britain, and Saudi Arabia.
“The Saudis will receive proper response from Iran. They’re well aware of the danger of our response,” Shamkhani warned. Shamkhani described the widespread protests as Saudi’s “cyberspace proxy war” against the Islamic Republic and confirmed that an exiled Iranian dissident group, Mujahedin Khalq Iran Organization, MKO, is working in tandem with Riyadh to stoke the fire of recent uprising in Iran.,\
However, the IRGC commander assured Al-Mayadeen’s audience by asserting, “What is happening in Iran will be over in a few days, and there is no reason to worry at all”.
World Net Daily posted that pictures and videos coming out of Iran are starting to look more like a full-on revolution than a protest movement, but American news agencies continue to be slow to react, describing the historic protests as mostly about the country’s weak economy and chastising President Trump for cheering them on. According to WND, that’s woefully under-reporting the depth of what is really going on in Iran, say experts on the country’s history and current political environment.
The Associated Press’s description of the protests as “over economic issues” seems to lack any justification for Iranians taking to the streets en masse chanting “death to the dictator,” while burning in effigy the image of Supreme Islamic leader, Ayatollah Kamenei.
CNN called the protests a “seemingly unorganized, leaderless wave of demonstrations against high prices, corruption and repressive government.” No mention of the fact that Iran is an Islamic state, a theocracy where converting to a religion other than Islam is a crime against the state.
What we’re talking about here is a lot of provocation – a ‘pushing at’ or ‘butting at’ – Iran as Daniel 11:40 prophesies. WND and CNN only hint at the orchestration behind the scenes in the US, the UK and Saudi Arabia, but the orchestration is there and Iran knows it.
There is much more going on than what is being portrayed in these left-leaning news sites. Twitter and other social media are alight with videos coming out of the Islamic Republic of Iran that show people rallying around the idea of freedom and democracy.
One video in particular features a young woman, her long black hair fluttering in the wind, standing in a public square silently waving her hijab on the end of a stick, as if to say “I will no longer be forced to cover my head in public against my will.” She was reportedly arrested and detained.
The Times of Israel is reporting that Iranian citizens have breached the ‘fear barrier’ created by 2009 crackdown. A classified memo assessing the unfolding Iran protests distributed by the Foreign Ministry reportedly determines that the demonstrations have weakened the regime in Tehran and may threaten its stability if they continue.
The document, which was drawn up by the ministry’s intelligence wing and shared with the Prime Minister’s Office, the security cabinet, and Israeli embassies around the world, says the regime was caught off-guard by the protests, and, in response, is trying to use means such as arrests and blocking social media to quell the demonstrations, Channel 10 reported Monday.
While the protests initially focused on economic issues, they have since turned to Iran’s support for Syria, Lebanon’s Hezbollah terror group and Yemen’s Houthi rebels, the document says, the report said.
“The escalation of the protest’s messaging attests to our understanding of a certain breach of the Iranian citizens’ fear barrier,” the document reportedly states. Since the government’s brutal crackdown on similar protests in 2009, Iranians had been careful to not allow their discontent to extend beyond social media. However, the recent demonstrations have shown that “barrier” to have been eroded, the Foreign Ministry analysts conclude.
While the protests do not currently pose a threat to the regime, the Foreign Ministry states that they do sap its legitimacy, and could undermine it in the long term. “At the moment, the protests do not constitute a threat to the survival of the regime, but they do weaken it and undermine its legitimacy, and they are likely to threaten its stability in the long term,” the document reportedly states.
If these protests are truly threatening Iran, Iran will do something about it and one would think that will happen soon. If these protests are gotten under control by Iran – and it seems that at the end of this week they are dying down – then Iran will remember them when the time comes to attack Saudi Arabia.
The document also says that Iran’s relatively moderate president, Hassan Rouhani, and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps are on the same page regarding efforts to end the protests, and that the IRGC and Basij militia are exercising restraint and focusing on deterrence, Channel 10 reported.
“Despite the fact that Rouhani’s image has been somewhat damaged, parts of the public still believe in him or at the very least see him as a lesser of all evils,” the document was quoted as saying.
The good news, so far, is that Iran is dismissing the notion of any Israeli connection to the ongoing protests in Iran even though Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the “heroic” demonstrators protesting against the “cruel regime” in a video Monday.
Rouhani had said earlier in the day that the protests were being pushed by Saudi Arabia to destabilize the country along with the US and Israel. This week, Iran sent a letter to the UN accusing the U.S. of “grotesque” interference in its internal affairs in a letter to the UN. It said the US leadership, in “numerous absurd tweets, [had] incited Iranians to engage in disruptive acts” which violated international law.
Twenty-one people died in six days of protests sparked by Iran’s economic problems, which spanned several cities.
On Thursday state media focused on pro-government rallies after a second night without reports of major protests.
The Russians also had their say. Russia has warned the United States not to interfere in Iran’s internal affairs.
When Obama sparked the Arab uprising in December 2010, neither Russia or Iran had grown in strength as they have since then. Obama’s Middle East war fed a war machine, but not necessarily the United States. The war machines it fed was those of Russia and Iran who have made the most of the situation. Now, both nations are in a position to make their threats against the United States stick. In fact, Iran can stick it to the entire Middle East while Russia’s strategic maneuvering and increased military stockpiles endanger the U.S. mainland directly.
If Trump continues meddling in Iran’s internal affairs, it could trigger Iran to attack Saudi Arabia and Russia to attack the United States. If Iran feels threatened, Russia will come to Iran’s aid.
How long will it take for Iran and Russia to respond? Iran may not yet be ready for a full-scale war, even though the east-west corridor is completed, as I reported last week. Even so, since Iran believes Saudi Arabia and the U.S. are behind these protests and the Iranians’ drive toward Democracy and freedom, this is another provocation. We must wonder just how long the Western New World Order will get away with provocations before the King of the North rides out on his white horse.
A UNITED JERUSALEM
Arutz Sheva reports that the “United Jerusalem Bill” was approved by the Knesset this week. The bill was authored by Jewish Home chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett and was submitted by MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli (Jewish Home).
The law stipulates that a majority of 80 Knesset members will be required to change the status of Jerusalem or for any transfer of territories from the capital within the framework of a future diplomatic agreement. Previously a majority of only 61 MKs was required.
The new law guards Jerusalem so that it cannot be divided so easily.
“The Mount of Olives, the Old City, the Temple Mount and the City of David will remain in our hands forever. There will be no more political maneuvers that will allow to tear our capital apart. This is also Israel’s response to the shameful United Nations vote against Jerusalem. A holiday for Israel!” Naftali Bennett said.
MISSILES FROM GAZA
Gaza continues to be problematic for Israel. Hamas was emboldened by General Qassem Saleimani’s statement of support for the Palestinians in December. Hamas and other Islamic organizations have been lobbing missiles into Israel on and off since then. The Israel Air Force struck terror infrastructure in the southern Gaza Strip early Thursday morning following three mortar shells which were fired towards Israel on Wednesday.
A statement released by the IDF’s Spokesperson’s Unit stated that the airstrikes targeted a “central terror infrastructure” and while Israel holds Hamas responsible for everything that occurs in the Strip, the statement did not mention the group, which rules Gaza. The IDF also did not elaborate on the exact nature of the target struck.
A resident of Kibbutz Kerem Shalom in Israel’s Eshkol Regional Council told Walla News that the intensity of IDF airstrikes was different on Thursday.
“It was clear that this was something different, the response to the rocket fire was not only directed at abandoned warehouses, as in the past, tonight was something else,” Daniel Matry was quoted as saying.
After years of relative quiet along the strip, over 20 projectiles have been launched towards southern Israel since US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital three weeks ago. Several have been intercepted, including one over the city of Ashkelon, about 20 kilometers from Gaza, and a number have slammed into Israeli territory.
Retaliations by the IDF, usually in the form of artillery fire and/or airstrikes, usually target Hamas outposts which tend to be evacuated by the terror group before the strikes.
Over the course of several hours on Wednesday, three mortar shells were launched towards Israel’s Eshkol Regional Council. The first two rockets did not activate incoming rocket siren since they were heading towards open territory but sirens sounded around 5pm when a third mortar landed near the border community.
While Hamas is not believed to be behind the launching of the projectiles, the group continues to invest significant amounts of manpower and money into their tunnel system, which the Head of the Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Eyal Zamir described as a “metro system” of three different kinds of tunnels.
According to him the tunnels – including some which run under residential buildings – include smuggling tunnels with Egypt, tunnels inside the Strip used for command centers and weapons storage and offensive tunnels used for cross-border attacks in Israel.
Israel’s military has been investing extensive effort in locating cross-border tunnels from Gaza and has been building a ground-breaking underground barrier across the entire border with the Hamas-run enclave. In November Zamir stated that although the barrier is being built entirely in Israeli territory, “this wall can potentially lead to a dangerous escalation.”
In addition to the underground barrier, the IDF also has a new system to detect and destroy tunnels, using a collaboration between advanced technology and various engineering, intelligence and ground forces units.
Since late October, Israel discovered two cross-border terror tunnels, one belonging to Hamas and one belonging to Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) inside Israeli territory, and it is likely that the strikes on Thursday targeted another such tunnel belonging to one of the groups inside the Gaza Strip.