Photo Credit: Palestine Remembered
A section of Jenin after the British Army dynamited a quarter of the city, September 3, 1938.

The original terrorist Ezz a-Din al-Qassam came out of Jenin during the British mandate and killed innocent Jews. During the Arab rebellion of 1936-1939, Jenin served as a base for terror gangs, until on August 24, 1938, the British deputy governor of one of the districts was murdered there. In response, the British government inflicted collective punishment on the residents of Jenin the likes of which no Israeli government has ever dared to do. Later, the mandatory government’s architect, Henry Kendall, designed a bypass road so government officials could avoid this cursed city.

The July 3-5 Operation Home and Garden in the Jenin “refugee” camp (no one there under age 75 is a refugee, do the math) was declared a great success, with about 1,000 explosive charges seized, along with more than 100 wanted persons. But the IDF left, making clear it decided to let the Palestinian Authority try to take control of the area and bring order to its streets.


The Arab adage says, “Bukra fil mishmash,” meaning, “tomorrow, when the apricots bloom,” or, in other words, never.

Jenin after the IDF withdrawal, July 5, 2023. / Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90

More than a month after the operation, the PA security apparatus has not been seen inside the “refugee” camp at all. They move around in their jeeps; they show their presence – outside the camp.

There are warnings of planned terrorist attacks all over Judea and Samaria. The IDF has beefed up its forces, but as the IDF explains last week’s murder of an Israeli security guard in downtown Tel Aviv, “For every one hundred foiled attacks – there is one that manages to get out.”

Turns out the terrorist who carried out the vile murder of a family man on Nahlat Binyamin Street was able to hide away in Jenin while the IDF forces were moving about, making sure only about 10 terrorists were harmed permanently in the production of their movie. And when the army and camera crews left, he, the future murderer, came out of his hole.

There’s no doubt that the Army, together with the police and Shin Bet, are capable of taking over Jenin once again. But if they do it and continue to fear public opinion, should they inflict serious damage on the army of terrorists who are in hiding during the raid, if the Netanyahu cabinet is afraid of being dubbed war criminals for killing, say, a thousand enemy soldiers, execute them in the streets, then they might as well save the trouble and continue to pluck them one terror squad at a time as they sneak out of their holes.

Mind you, I’m not faulting the Netanyahu government and the security apparatus for hesitating to take a meaningful, wholesale strike to rid Samaria of these elements for a few years. I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes, with the tormented settlers demanding protection on one side, growing ever-angrier at the IDF brass who are failing to provide it; and the relentless pressure from the Biden administration to be even nice to the PA Arabs if we want to receive that much-dangled pact with Saudi Arabia.

In terms of the scope of terrorism in Samaria, it appears that of all the Shin Bet’s foiling of terror attacks since the beginning of the year, more than 300 were shooting attacks using firearms. It’s no longer rocks and firebombs. They are armed to the teeth with weapons such as the M16, which cost as much as NIS 100,000 ($27,000) on the black market.

The terrorist headquarters of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon, together with large funds transferred by the Iranians and Hezbollah, have turned Samaria into a terrorist Heart of Darkness, just as it was in 2003, right next door to Israel’s soft underbelly.

Those foreign elements smuggle weapons and ammunition at an unprecedented rate and in a manner that poses a challenge to the IDF and Shin Bet. They brazenly finance new terrorist squads, transfer payments for each terrorist attack, and assist the families of prisoners and dead terrorists.

These people must be killed now. We can always apologize later…


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