After three days of intense rocket exchange, a ceasefire has brought an end to the battle between Palestinians and Israelis. News outlets have covered it, and Amir Tsarfati posted multiple updates each day on Telegram, so we won’t rehash the details. But here are some basics, and a thought or two about the skirmish.
The conflict began when Israeli intelligence discovered a terror plot about to be carried out. To preempt the attack, Israel’s Mossad took out a key Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) commander in charge of the terror plot. In return, the PIJ threatened to launch anti-tank missiles at Israeli military and civilian vehicles in southern Israel, prompting a lockdown of all civilians in that region.
When rockets were launched toward Israel, the IDF immediately began Operation Breaking Dawn, taking out known launch sites and launching targeted assassinations of top jihadist leaders. Over 20 terrorist leaders and countless operatives met their demise.
Now, some stark truth and tragedy. First the truth…. , At times, terror groups within the Gaza Strip fired one rocket every 3 minutes. Of the 1,000+ rockets fired by terror groups a few landed in the Mediterranean Sea (the opposite direction!), over 10% never made it out of Gaza, some were allowed to land in unpopulated areas, and Iron Dome took care of the rest.
Now the tragedy…. Ironically (but not surprising), failed rocket launches from Gaza killed more Palestinian citizens than Israel’s precision-guided missiles. At one point, the Palestinians blamed Israel for the deaths of several children, only to face video evidence of their own rocket misfiring and slamming into civilian areas of the Gaza Strip filled with children. There are some reports of over 10 Palestinian children killed by Palestinian rockets. Contrast that with a number of Israeli aborted missions due to the sighting of civilians near the target.
Though obviously provoked by terrorist rocket fire from Gaza, nations heaped condemnation on Israel for human rights violations when they launched attacks on rocket launchers. At the absolute height of hypocrisy, Russia, China, Iran and Turkey issued prompt condemnation, while simultaneously carrying out war or threats against their own citizens and others. In what world is it okay to aggressively take territory by illegitimate war, while condemning a nation for defending its citizens and territory in the face of threats to wipe it off the face of the map?
As a side note, the Palestinians never miss an opportunity to accuse Israel of trying to take over Temple Mount. In commemoration of Tisha B’Av each year, thousands of Jews ascend Temple Mount for a time of remembrance of the calendar day that both the First and Second Temples were destroyed. Each year, the Palestinian narrative is that Jews are attempting to take over Temple Mount. Thus, skirmishes often break out, and terrorists groups in Gaza and the West Bank use the gathering as an opportunity to antagonize Israel…often with rocket fire. Thankfully, the IDF and Israeli Police kept things on Temple Mount much calmer than normal this year.
So, Operation Breaking Dawn seems to have run its course. PIJ and Hamas will rebuild their launch sights, Iran will re-supply them with weaponry, and the world will continue to view the Palestinians as the mistreated ones. Get used to it, if you are not already. Israel will never be liked by the evil empires of this world…and neither will Christians!
Because both have been called and given unique purposes in God’s sovereign plan. God promises to stand with Israel (Jeremiah 31:35-37), and we should do the same!