Hamas' New Strategy

[Ynet News] Ron Ben-Yishai - Hamas has changed its combat strategy. In recent weeks it has diverted its main effort from rocket terrorism to focused operations mostly targeting IDF forces operating along the fence. The organization's leadership reached the conclusion that the terror directed at civilians - rockets, mortar shells, and machinegun fire - does not result in the required political and psychological "yield." It even damages Hamas when it comes to international and Palestinian public opinion and grants Israel legitimacy to hit the group and its leaders, and even to embark on a large-scale operation in Gaza. Hamas wants to prevent this as well, and therefore the group decided to focus its efforts on "high quality" operations against the IDF. The greatest aspiration of Hamas leaders is the abduction of Israeli soldiers, which would provide them with a powerful pressure lever. The attack on Kerem Shalom showed that Hamas is able to operate at a higher level of sophistication in terms of planning, execution, and coordination between various forces that it lacked in the past. The training of its operatives in Iran, Lebanon, and Syria and the large quantities of explosives and missiles accumulated when the fence was breached are leaving their mark.

2008-04-22 01:00:00

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