Posted by on August 5, 2022 7:36 pm
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Islamic Jihad vows ‘no truce’ in new conflict with Israel

EDS NOTE: GRAPHIC CONTENT – Mourners touch the face of one of five people were killed during Israeli airstrikes on apartment of Taiseer al-Jabari, Islamic Jihad commander, at the morgue of Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Friday, Aug. 5, 2022. Palestinian officials say Israeli airstrikes on Gaza have killed several people, including a senior militant, and wounded 40 others. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana) Abdel Kareem Hana/AP

Islamic Jihad vows ‘no truce’ in new conflict with Israel

Joel Gehrke August 05, 07:12 PMAugust 05, 07:17 PM Video Embed

An Iran-backed terrorist organization has fired scores of rockets against Israeli targets in retaliation for the assassination of one of their top commanders in Gaza, according to reports.

“We are heading to battle, and there is no truce after this airstrike,” the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s Ziad al Nakhalah said Friday. “The results of this war will be in favor of the Palestinian people. The enemy should expect a battle, not a truce.”

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz is preparing to call up 25,000 reservists for the prospective fight, although he maintained that the “mission is to ensure that the tension ends and routine returns.” The uproar comes just over a year after a major clash between Israeli forces and Hamas militants rocked Gaza for 11 days.

“We don’t know how this will play out … but this could take time,” Israeli Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked told local media. “This could be a lengthy round [of conflict] and a hard one.”

ISRAEL CONDUCTS WAVE OF STRIKES ON GAZA

The duration and intensity of this furor likely will depend on whether PIJ can induce Hamas to join the fight, according to a close observer of the militant groups who thinks that PIJ can only sustain a fight for a few days in the absence of reinforcements.

“Hamas is the dominant group in Gaza and has a much stronger military capability compared to Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the smaller groups,” Foundation for Defense of Democracies research analyst Joe Truzman told the Washington Examiner. “Hamas is watching, observing, but it hasn’t decided to join the fight just yet. … This is mostly Palestinian Islamic Jihad and some other smaller militant groups fighting Israel.”

The violence reportedly traces back to the arrest of a militant named Bassem Saadi, the leader of PIJ’s West Bank operations. His arrest was followed by the killing of PIJ commander Tayseer al Jabari in a bombardment that the Israel Defense Forces characterized as necessary to prevent a terrorist attack.

“Jabari was responsible for the concrete threat in the last three-four days to fire anti-tank missiles and mow down Israeli civilians or soldiers in the Gaza border area,” IDF spokesman Ron Kochav said this week. “We carried out a devastating ambush that thwarted Jabari and the members of the anti-tank cells, along with others.”

That operation drew a rebuke from a senior U.N. official, who said he was “deeply concerned” by the killing and also lamented the death of a 5-year-old girl who reportedly was killed in the attack on Jabari.

“The continuing escalation is very dangerous,” the United Nation’s Tor Wellesland, special coordinator for the Middle East, said Friday. “The progress made in gradually opening Gaza since the end of the May escalation risks being undone, leading to even greater humanitarian needs at a time when global resources are stretched and international financial support for a renewed humanitarian effort in Gaza will not be easily available.”

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Wellesland’s statement drew a tart retort from Israel’s representative at the U.N.

“While the Palestinian Islamic Jihad is launching missiles at Israeli civilians, the U.N. envoy expresses ‘deep concern’ for the neutralization of a senior terrorist behind an imminent attack on Israelis,” Ambassador Gilad Erdan said. “Will he also express deep concern over the neutralization of [the late al Qaeda leader] al Zawahiri?”

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