To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.
JERUSALEM – Hours after IDF commanders completed a surprise nationwide drill earlier this week to prepare for a possible jihadist attack against Israel, Islamic Jihad rocket squads in Gaza fired a volley of Grad and Kassam rockets at the Ashkelon and Netivot areas in southern Israel. Despite no reports of injuries or serious property damage, the attacks by radical elements in Gaza came as no surprise to the IDF or the Israeli government.
For the past week, Israeli media have reported that the civil war in Syria between Shiite and Sunni militias was leading to a religious conflict across the entire Middle East and Persian Gulf. As a result of the domino effects of the Sunni-Shiite hostilities, Hamas, having supported the Sunni rebels battling both Syrian government forces and their Shiite Hizbullah allies (under the command of Iranian generals), forfeited regular financial and military support from Iran in their terror war against Israel.
Additionally, Iran is believed to have ordered its ally, the Islamic Jihad faction, to unleash the rocket attack in order to break the cease-fire brokered by embattled Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi. This follows Morsi’s call for Sunni Islamic factions to depose Assad, angering Iran’s Shiite supreme leader, Ayatollah Khamenei. And in an ironic twist, Hamas ordered its militia to prevent Islamic Jihad from firing rockets at Israel – to no avail.
According to Israel’s Channel 10 News, Hamas is on the verge of losing another vital economic lifeline. Egyptian military commanders are blowing up the maze of highly profitable Gazan tunnels along the Egyptian border after determining that Hamas was behind some of the recent violence along Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. Due to the ongoing conflicts, Hamas now finds itself engaged in a power struggle with Islamic Jihad and other pro-Iranian terror groups for control of the Gaza Strip.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad tried to claim that their split was sparked by a drug deal gone sour. According to the Times of Israel, Hamas police raided the home of a suspected Islamic Jihad drug dealer last weekend. In the ensuing scuffle between Hamas and the drug dealer, Raed Jundiya, Islamic Jihad said that Hamas police fatally shot Jundiya. Hamas maintains that Jundiya was killed by bullets fired from his own gun. The Times of Israel also reported that during Jundiya’s funeral, a Hamas military van hit a vehicle driven by the head of Islamic Jihad’s military division. An Islamic Jihad statement to Gaza media said that these two incidents sparked the break between the two rival Islamic factions – with Islamic Jihad calling Hamas “traitors.”
IDF commanders have recently altered their combat strategies, since the possibility exists of having to fight terror groups aligned with Iran along the Golan Heights, Lebanese border, Gaza Strip, and perhaps the Sinai Peninsula. With huge protests scheduled against Egypt’s Morsi in the coming days his government could be forced from power, or the Egyptian High Command might once again create a ruling military junta until new elections are held. Israel’s Yisrael Beiteinu leader, former foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman, has called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to order an IDF reoccupation of Gaza due to the spiraling chaos inside Gaza.
During the past few days, intense battles have also taken place between the mostly Shiite Lebanese Army and radical Islamic Sunni militias in northern and southern Lebanon. IDF officials believe that these growing battles could provoke Hizbullah to launch a major missile attack or border incident against Israel in order to detract attention from the heavy losses they are enduring on the battlefields in Syria, along with their growing alienation from the Sunni, Druse and Christian populations in Lebanon.
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The Navy has selected Captain Or Cohen to become the first woman appointed as an IDF Navy ship’s commander.
Three Gazans were captured overnight when they crossed over the security fence into Israel.
Over 200 hair salons across Israel took part in the annual nationwide drive to collect hair for the Zichron Menachem Cancer Support in Israel in partnership with Pantene Products Israel.
U.S. Supreme Court Ruth Bader Ginsburg had heart surgery on Wednesday, Nov. 26.
“The Israeli government is not interested in the collapse of the Palestinian Authority,” said Arbell, a guest scholar at the Brookings Institution who teaches at American University here. “There may be faults in Abbas and the leadership and in what they’re doing, but they’re still the safest bet.”
Shas head Aryeh Deri said this evening on Radio Kol Chai that if Netanyahu met his two non-negotiable conditions, Shas could join the coalition.
The man, a resident of Beit Safafa, tried on three different occasions last week to burn down the section of the hospital building where he worked.
The terrorist’s wife will now have to return to the Palestinian Authority, following the decision by Interior Minister Gilad Erdan.
The IDF says it will change its policies on soldiers who grow beards for religious reasons.
The proposal includes some extreme measures to fight the current wave of terrorism.
The Kinneret rose 3.5 centimeters overnight due to the heavy rainstorm that hit the country.
The father-son team recently gave a check to the family of Druze policeman Zidan Saif for his role in stopping the Har Nof Massacre.
The police fought hard to not have it revealed that Netanel Arami was murdered in a Petach Tikva terror attack, but now a court has lifted the gag order…
As of Tuesday, all IDF forces operating in Gaza withdrew and redeployed to holding positions around Gaza.
The sophisticated cement tunnels, which cost hundreds of millions of dollars, were reportedly built with Qatari government funds.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the nation on Tuesday afternoon that if the rocket fire did not stop by Tuesday evening, he would order “an even harsher” military response.
“They were abducted and murdered in cold blood by human animals,” Netanyahu said shortly after the bodies were found.
Awad had been released as part of the Gilad Shalit kidnapping deal. Mizrachi’s widow, Hadas, told Israeli reporters that she had opposed the release of murderers as part of any kidnapping deal, and that Awad “deserved the death penalty so he wouldn’t kill again.”
If the abductors’ goal was to force Israeli authorities to release long-serving Palestinian prisoners, the effort backfired as Israeli forces are quickly rolling up what was left of Hamas in the West Bank and are reportedly contemplating the overthrow of the Hamas leadership in Gaza should harm come to the three teenagers.
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