Were It Not for Iran, Where Would Palestine Be?

 November 23, 2022

Ahmad FarhatTranslated and Edited by Mohammad Salami

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah stressed, during a speech last month, that , the most important factor of strength in the axis of resistance is the Islamic Republic of Iran, wondering where Palestine would be without the Iranian role.

The signing of Camp David Accords crowned the US-brokered Egyptian concessions to the Israeli enemy, knowing that the most prominent event in this context was the visit of the Egyptian President Anwar Al-Sadat to the Zionist entity in November, 1977.

Signing of Camp David Peace Accord (President Jimmy Carter, Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin)

Since the end of the 1973 war and the advent of Egypt’s settlements era, the military formulas in the region had changed. The Arab countries, consequently, could not fight on one front against the Israeli enemy which managed to hold bilateral ‘peace’ agreements with the Arab countries in order to avoid facing them altogether.

The Arabs suffered then from a wide case of frustration amid the collapse of the Common Arab Security.

With respect to the Zionist entity, the Arab countries would no longer be able to attack ‘Israel’ without the participation of Egypt despite the fact that the Israeli enemy continued carrying out its occupation and expansion schemes. In this regard, the Zionist enemy invaded Lebanon in 1978 and 1982 and struck the Palestinian resistance.

The following video shows the Palestinian resistance fighters leaving Lebanon in 1982:

Hope Rising in the East

Amid the tragic developments, Imam Ruhollah Khomeini led the Islamic Revolution in Iran to a historic victory in 1979. Just 8 days later, the Islamic Republic identified its foreign policy, granting the keys of the Israeli embassy in Tehran to Yasser Arafat, the late head of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. This established a new epoch of a strategic Iranian support to the Palestinian cause.

Since its victory, the Islamic Revolution in Iran rejected and confronted all the schemes which targeted the Palestinian cause, providing all the possible means of support to the Palestinian resistance and intifada. The Iranian authorities have been also supporting and funding the Palestinian camps in the diaspora in order to maintain the steadfastness of the refugees.

On August 7, 1979, late founder of the Islamic Revolution, Imam Ruhollah Mousavi Khomeini designated the last Friday of Ramadan holy month as the International Al-Quds Day. Since then, Al-Quds Day has become a day all Muslims and oppressed people across the world rally for Al-Quds and Palestine against the Zionist occupation.

The Islamic Republic in Iran has been also supporting the Palestinian resistance factions which have committed to the rules of Islam.

Axis of Resistance

The axis of resistance led by the Islamic Republic of Iran engaged in several wars in Lebanon and Palestine. Iran supported founding Hezbollah Islamic Resistance that cooperated with the Palestinian resistance to reach victories.

This cooperation appeared clearly during Al-Quds Sword battle in 2021 between Gaza resistance and the Israeli enemy when Hezbollah, IRGC, and Hamas established a chamber of military operations in Beirut during the recent Israeli aggression on Gaza.

This axis, which has sacrificed a large number of martyrs crowned by the former head of IRGC’s Al-Quds Force martyr General Qassem Suleimani, has set praying at Al-Aqsa Mosque as a strategic target.

The video that follows the huge support demonstrated by the Iranian people to the Palestinian cause on various occasions, including mainly Al-Quds Day.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Netanyahu returns, but Israel’s political and military landscape has changed

Bibi is back, leading Israel’s most right-wing government but also facing unprecedented Palestinian resistance and global turmoil.

November 06 2022

Photo Credit: The Cradle

By Abdel Bari Atwan

While the Arab Summit in Algeria affirmed its adherence to the so-called ‘Arab Peace Initiative’ as a final solution to the Palestinian issue, Israel’s response came quickly and resolutely with the return to power of Benjamin Netanyahu and the anti-Arab religious Likud bloc.

In the 1 November legislative elections, Israelis voted in large numbers for the anti-Arab, racist, religious parties, which openly embrace a policy of killing and expelling Palestinians from all of occupied Palestine, and promote a solely Jewish-Zionist identity of the country.

The “Jewish Power” party, which won 15 seats, and is led by the two most racist figures in the short history of the Jewish state, Bezael H. Cherish and his deputy Itamar Ben Gvir, will be the backbone of Netanyahu’s coalition government.

The leader of this party, which will be the most prominent partner of the Arab monarchs who signed peace agreements with Israel, has called for killing Arabs, expelling them and wrapping the bodies of the martyrs in pigskin “in honor” of them.

Normalization the new norm

Nonetheless, it is likely that red carpets will be laid out for Ben Gvir and Netanyahu in Arab capitals, where they will enjoy Arab hospitality and drink from their gilded goblets. Indeed, there is no difference between the winning Israeli coalition and the defeated one (Lapid-Gantz).

Both converge on their mutual hostility and hatred of Arabs and Muslims. General Benny Gantz, the Israeli Minister of Defense in the previous government, used to boast that he was the Israeli who killed the largest number of Arabs – and this is true, as his government has killed 166 Palestinians since the beginning of this year.

There is a silver lining, however: This racist government will hasten Israel’s demise and lead to its inevitable end, not at the hands of the battered Arab armies, but at the hands of the Palestinian resistance and their regional allies, their missiles and drones.

There are three steps that the Netanyahu government and his extremist coalition may take upon assuming power:

First, a return to reviving the Trump-era ‘Deal of the Century,’ the annexation of the West Bank, and the deportation of most of its Palestinian residents to Jordan as an “alternative homeland.”

Second, the escalation of incursions into the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the consolidation of Jewish control over East Jerusalem, and the obliteration of its Arab and Islamic identity. The first step may be dividing it on the model of the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron, then demolishing it, and erecting the alleged “temple” on its ruins.

Third, the canceling or freezing of the maritime border demarcation agreement with Lebanon, similar to what happened to the Oslo Accords with Palestinians. Netanyahu announced his intent to do so openly in his election campaign.

This option appears especially likely given that extraction of gas and oil from the Karish field has already begun, while the Qana field, which was “partially” recognized as Lebanese, remains untouched, with no surveys or exploration conducted until this moment.

It is likely that the Lebanese gas fields will lay dormant for the foreseeable future. The same US mediators did not guarantee the implementation of even 1 per cent of the Oslo Accords, and they will most likely not guarantee the rights of the Lebanese people.

Renewed Palestinian armed resistance

But Netanyahu is set to assume control over a very different state of affairs, both domestically and internationally. For starters, Israel is facing an escalating internal conflict, and most importantly, a revived intifada in the form of West Bank armed resistance.

We cannot talk about West Bank resistance without discussing the phenomenon of The Lions’ Den whose political and military influence is expanding, while the Palestinian public’s embrace of the movement is growing. Not a day passes without witnessing a commando operation in various parts of the West Bank; in Nablus, Jenin and Hebron – later in Ramallah, and then in the pre-1948 occupied Palestinian territories.

Netanyahu may succeed in including one or two more Arab governments in the Abraham Accords, which was signed under his last premiership. However, such political acrobatics will have no value in light of the “awakening” of the Palestinian people and their return to armed resistance.

The returning Netanyahu will not forget the May 2021 battle of the “Sword of Jerusalem” that humiliated him, and its missiles that isolated the occupying state for more than 11 days, forcing millions of Israeli settler-colonizers into shelters and bunkers.

These missiles are still present and ready, along with hundreds of armed drones. Perhaps it is also worth reminding the incoming Israeli Prime Minister of how he ended an electoral meeting in the city of Ashdod (my ancestors’ hometown) and fled in terror from the 400 missiles launched by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement in retaliation for the assassination of its leader, Baha Abu al-Atta.

Just another day in the office?

The “Israel” to which Netanyahu returns is not the same Israel he left, and the world he knew when he was last in power, is not the same world today. His US supporter is mired in an unprecedented proxy war of attrition with Russia in Ukraine, where his co-religionist, Volodymyr Zelensky, has so far lost about a fifth of his country’s territory, and has plunged it into darkness and despair.

While Netanyahu is viewed as as being close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, that friendship had deepened before the Ukraine war. The situation has now changed dramatically, and he will be forced to choose between Washington and Moscow in an era of multipolarity.

As for the Lions’ Den, they have effectively changed all the equations and rules of engagement in occupied Palestine – and perhaps in the Arab world as well – and within this context will actually “welcome” the hardliner Netanyahu’s return to power.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

The Evolution of The Palestinian Resistance and Its New Strategy

22 Oct 2022 23:3

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Robert Inlakesh 

The bravery and defiance of Ibrahim Nablusi, immortalized him as a heroic martyr and saw tens of thousands pack the streets of Nablus city, where the resistance fighter was killed, in order to attend his funeral.

There have been at least 11 large-scale Israeli assaults on the Gaza Strip, four wars, and hundreds of attacks against the territory, resulting in the untold misery of the Gazan civilian population

The ongoing Palestinian uprising, along with the revival of the armed struggle inside the occupied West Bank, has largely been characterised by its tendencies as a popular movement, namely that there has been a chaotic reaction from the occupier. The past months’ developments have been an indicator of a major shift from the initial stages of the uprising and it’s time to take note.

The Palestinian armed uprising, inside the West Bank, can largely be traced back to the 11-day war that broke out in May, 2021, between the Palestinian resistance in Gaza and the Israeli military. Following this, although the armed fighters had been previously active, in September of 2021  when the ‘Jenin Brigades’ were officially formed and the action they began to take shook “Israel” to its core. 2022 has been a more violent year for the West Bank, than the besieged Gaza Strip, with the majority of Palestinians killed by the occupation forces this year being inside the West Bank, with nearly 170 dead so far.

The scenes of armed resistance attacks, which occur multiple times per day at this time, against Israeli forces and settlers, have brought back the tactics and brutality of the Zionist regime never witnessed inside the West Bank since the Second Intifada (2000-2007). Although the initial attacks that came from groups such as the Jenin brigades, the Tulkarem brigades, and the Nablus brigades, seemed to have been loosely organized and worked primarily to inspire later action, along with shaking up the Israeli “security system”, this seems to be no longer the case. What has marked a seismic shift in the conflict between the occupier and the resistance inside the West Bank, has been the introduction of the Areen al-Oussoud, or Lions’ Den group, that declared themselves out of the old city of Nablus on September 2nd. 

The Gaza based resistance movement

Since the armed resistance in the West Bank was either destroyed or disbanded in the early 2000’s by the Israeli military and Palestinian Authority (PA), the armed struggle has been isolated into the hands of the movements operating out of the Gaza Strip. For a long time, there has been a successfully implemented strategy, by the Israelis and Americans, to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, during this time the resistance in Gaza – headed by Hamas primarily – had taken over the path of armed struggle.

There have been at least 11 large-scale Israeli assaults on the Gaza Strip, four wars, and hundreds of attacks against the territory, resulting in the untold misery of the Gazan civilian population. Since the imposition of the siege, by not only “Israel” and Egypt but more importantly by the collective Western governments, the strategy has been to pressure the Palestinian people who live inside the territory to overthrow Hamas as their democratically elected government. This strategy, implemented since the 2006 – not 2007 when the siege was tightened significantly and is often framed as having started – the sanctions against Gaza have failed to bring the resistance to its knees and this is owed to the resounding resilience of the Palestinian people.

For most of the history of the Hamas rule of Gaza, it had been “Israel” that had taken most of the initiative to strike first and to be on the offensive. It has been noted by many analysts and historians, that despite the bravery and constant innovations of the resistance, “they had largely proven ineffective at inflicting significant defeats upon the enemy”. The strategic thinking of the resistance began to undergo significant shifts, however, dating back to 2015, but truly showing steadiness from 2017, during the major dispute between Qatar and many of the Gulf States, in addition to other pro-Western reactionary Arab regimes.

In 2018, during the Great March of Return, the armed resistance movements – which had not been constantly fighting each other but had also not participated in a real unified command – decided to form the ‘Joint Operations Room’ of the Palestinian resistance. Although during most of 2018, the Israeli military would routinely attack the Gaza Strip with airstrikes and was constantly on the offensive, this would change by November of that same year.

Israeli agents had infiltrated the Gaza Strip in 2018, plotting to either assassinate or kidnap a commander in the armed wing of Hamas, the Al-Qassam brigades, named Nur Baraka. The Israeli agents were discovered and fled, one of them was shot dead in the process, whilst Israeli drone strikes were launched against the Gaza Strip. What ensued was a complete embarrassment for the Israeli political establishment, not only was the Israeli raid a complete failure, but the resistance showed a new unified strategy that we had not seen the likes of before. “Israel’s” then-minister of war, Avigdor Liberman, was so embarrassed that he resigned from his position. 300 rockets were fired at “Israel”, whilst the resistance fired anti-tank munitions that killed Israeli soldiers. A video was also released by the Sala al-Din brigades, which showed that at least 5 Israeli soldiers had been killed or mortally wounded in an explosive attack, an event that had happened in February but was covered up by the Israelis. The armed movement had laced Palestinian flagpoles with explosives, waited for Israeli soldiers to pull them down, and then detonated the devices.

Then, in early May 2019, the armed resistance movements in Gaza chose to strategically escalate tensions and open up a limited battle with the Israeli military, around 2 weeks prior to “Tel Aviv’s” hosting of the Eurovision song contest. In November 2019, “Israel” attempted to gain back some of its strategic initiatives, by attempting to isolate and target the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement in both Gaza and Syria. Despite assassinating leading figures in the PIJ movement, most prominently Baha Abu Al-Atta, the attack did little to change the course of the armed struggle.

Fast forward to May 2021, when the battle of Saif al-Quds was declared by the Israeli military, the people of Palestine had unified against the ongoing desecration of the Holy Sites in the old city of al-Quds. Saif al-Quds was when the Joint Room came to real prominence and it was clear that all the groups resisting Israel were unified, this provided inspiration to the rest of the Palestinian population in the other occupied Palestinian territories. Until this moment, despite “Israel’s” three-day attack against the PIJ movement, back in August, Tel Aviv has failed to achieve the equation it had before 2018. The Zionist regime went from attacking Gaza at will, constantly launching any strikes it wanted, to being deterred from striking Gaza unless it was willing to commit to an all-out war and now it is the resistance in Gaza that plots to strike first,  of strategic initiative.

Lessons learnt and the evolution of the West Bank struggle

One of the major issues that caused the setback of August this year, which had caught the resistance by surprise, was a fault made in the rhetoric of the Gaza-based resistance. “Israel” exploited this weakness in order to inflict a psychological blow against the resistance as a whole, it was clear that the resistance had not prepared for the scenario that befell them and although they reacted in a very rational way, within their means, the Israelis managed to score a pyrrhic victory on the propaganda front. The problem was, not that the resistance had acted in the wrong manner, but had projected great strength and made threats that weren’t intended on being followed through with, in the way that many had interpreted them.

“Israel’s” attack on Gaza in August may have resulted in political points for Prime Minister Yair Lapid and a distraction from the maritime border dispute with Lebanon if only the regime did not get greedy. Days later, the Israeli military sent in special forces units to assassinate the 19-year-old resistance fighter, Ibrahim Nablusi, yet, his killing served the opposite of its intended purpose. The bravery and defiance of Ibrahim Nablusi, immortalized him as a heroic martyr and saw tens of thousands pack the streets of Nablus city, where the resistance fighter was killed, in order to attend his funeral. As his mother held a pride-filled smile, whilst carrying her son’s body, thousands chanted Ibrahim Nablusi’s name and all over the West Bank young resistance fighters pledged to avenge his martyrdom. Instead of beating down the spirits of the Palestinian people and their belief in the armed struggle, Israel strengthened the resistance.

The mistake in the rhetoric of the Gaza-based resistance has undoubtedly been addressed now also, shown clearly through the statement released last Friday by the Joint Operations Room. This joint statement marks a turning point in the course of the armed struggle, as they not only have shown growth in their strategic rhetoric, but also they were dressed in a very interesting way. It should be noted that the Joint Room, which comprises all the serious armed movements in the Gaza Strip, dressed in military uniform, keffiyeh and did not wear anything to distinguish the resistance faction. This is symbolically powerful, as simultaneously the Lions’ Den group in Nablus is also refraining from identifying themselves with any single political or military party/movement. 

The armed groups that have been formed throughout the West Bank are made up of young people, mostly between the ages of 18 to 25, who come from many different political backgrounds and choose to work together as a unified force. The Lions’ Den group has also received a lot of popular support for its methods, managing to amass demonstrators that will take to the streets of Ramallah, Jenin, Nablus and beyond in order to support the resistance group. Unlike unity agreements that have been signed on paper in the past, this unity agreement has manifested itself in the physical world between armed resistance factions. It is clear that the resistance in Gaza is always taking notes of the popular will of the Palestinian people, it is adapting to this and is learning from their past mistakes in order to implement a strategy to escalate the armed struggle against the occupier. 

What is happening now with the development of the armed struggle; the unifying efforts of the younger generation and the resistance in Gaza, must be analyzed as part of this new chapter that has been opened in the history of the Palestinian struggle. This movement is becoming ever more unified, it is from the masses and in many ways is driven by the younger generation of Palestinians, it cannot be defeated by small Israeli military operations and soon this will escalate, paving the way to a completely new political landscape inside all of occupied Palestine.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Washington warns against reconciliation between Hamas and Damascus

The resumption of ties between Hamas and Syria is a symbolic victory for the resistance, as relations were strained for years following the start of the war

October 21 2022

GAZA CITY, THE GAZA STRIP, PALESTINE – 2018/12/16: A masked Palestinian seen holding a flag during the rally. Palestinians take part in a rally marking the 31st anniversary of Hamas’ founding, in Gaza City. (Photo by Mahmoud Issa/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

ByNews Desk

On 20 October, the US denounced and warned against the current reconciliation process between Syria and Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, stating that the group’s communication with Damascus will reinforce its “isolation” and undermine the interests of Palestinians.

“The Assad regime’s outreach to this terrorist organization only reinforces for us its isolation,” State Department spokesman, Ned Price, told media.

“It harms the interests of the Palestinian people and it undercuts global efforts to counterterrorism in the region and beyond,” he said, adding that Washington will “continue rejecting any support to rehabilitate the Assad regime, particularly from designated terrorist organizations like Hamas.”

Relations between Damascus and the Palestinian resistance group took a sour turn in 2012, a year after the start of the US-backed war in Syria, when Hamas publicly denounced the Syrian government and announced its solidarity with the opposition that had by that time already become aligned with extremist elements.

In 2013, Hamas operatives fought alongside the Free Syrian Army (FSA) factions and Jabhat al-Nusra against Hezbollah and the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) during the battle of al-Qusayr, in western Syria near the Lebanese border.

The ties between Hamas and the axis of resistance were strained for years after the group’s involvement in the Syrian war. Regardless of this, Hezbollah never condemned Hamas for what was seen by many as a huge betrayal, and in 2013 held meetings with the group’s representatives in a bid to ease tensions.

In recent years, Hamas made a number of attempts to resume ties with the Syrian government, despite the non-compliance of Damascus. On 25 July, however, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah revealed to Al-Mayadeen his personal interest in bringing the two together.

Relations between Hezbollah and Hamas had already thawed at this point, especially in light of the high-level coordination which took place between the two groups during the 2021 Sayf al-Quds battle fought between the Palestinian resistance factions and Israel.

In June of this year, a Hamas delegation reportedly visited Syria and met with officials in a bid to rebuild their relationship.

On 15 September, Hamas disclosed in a press statement that it has officially resumed its relations with Syria after ten years of tension. A month later, President Bashar al-Assad received a Hamas delegation and held a “warm” meeting in Damascus.

“The meeting with Assad is a glorious day, and from now on, we will resume our presence in Damascus to work alongside the Syrian people to regain the country’s stability,” the group’s deputy leader, Khalil al-Hayya said at the time, denouncing all aggression and threats against the country’s territorial integrity.

The reconciliation between Hamas and Syria signifies the return of Damascus into the regional fold, and is expected to be met with further criticism and rejection by Washington and its allies, particularly Israel.

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Can Any Lebanon-Israel Maritime Deal be Trusted?

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360° 

https://media.thecradle.co/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/Unknown-1.jpeg

Abdel Bari Atwan

While the demarcation agreement is yet to be signed, scepticism on both sides signals conflict ahead

There is a sense of optimism in Lebanon over the possibility of signing a maritime agreement with Israel that would enable the extraction of gas from Lebanese territorial waters, which could help lead the country out of its dire financial crisis.

After the 3 October meeting that brought together Lebanese President Michel Aoun, Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri, and Prime Minister Najib Mikati at the Republican Palace, it was clear that everyone agreed with the “moderate” proposals presented by US envoy Amos Hochstein, head of the indirect negotiations between Lebanon and Israel over their common maritime border.

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Elias Abu Saab announced after the meeting that Lebanon’s “comments” on the proposals would be sent to Hochstein, and that the Lebanese government would not provide an official answer to the proposal – pending a response from the US envoy before the end of the week.

Israel for its part has reportedly given preliminary approval for the proposal which consists of a 10-page draft.

Abu Saab confirmed that Lebanon had obtained its full rights in the maritime “Qana gas field,” but he cautioned that the devils lie in the detail.

Mikati, who seems the most enthusiastic to sign the US-brokered agreement, said after leaving the presidential palace that “things are going in the right direction.” His smile was wider than ever – as though gas revenues in the billions of dollars were about to flow into the coffers of the Central Bank of Lebanon.

Gas deal ‘leaks’

So far, few details of the agreement have been revealed. Currently in circulation are ‘deliberate’ indirect leaks from the two negotiating parties to ‘beautify’ the agreement for their respective constituents. It reflects the desire of deal proponents to clinch an agreement as soon as possible, ostensibly to avoid a war on the Lebanese-Israeli border that could escalate into a regional war, and maybe more.

While the Lebanese side appears uncharacteristically united and more willing to sign, sharp divisions persist in the Israeli camp, especially between interim Prime Minister Yair Lapid and his ally Minister of Defense Benny Gantz, on the one hand, and the opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu, on the other.

Lapid claims, through his camp’s leaks, that Israel will retain full sovereignty over the contested Karish gas field and will receive financial compensation by relinquishing part of Lebanon’s Qana gas field – paid for by French corporation TotalEnergies, which is currently in talks of its own with Israel over potential profit sharing from exploration.

Lapid also promotes the notion that Israel made a “tactical concession in exchange for a strategic gain in stability on the northern borders.”

Netanyahu has stepped up his attacks on the prime minister and has criticized the draft agreement for making huge concessions on the ‘Land of Israel’ and for handing over its natural resources to Lebanon and Hezbollah.

This, he contends, is taking place without holding a public referendum or securing the approval of the Knesset (Parliament). He has also vowed to abolish the agreement if he comes to power following legislative elections scheduled for 1 November.

Meanwhile, everyone is awaiting the results of the mini-Israeli security cabinet meeting next Thursday, which is supposed to discuss and ratify the agreement.

The internal battle may then move to Israel’s Supreme Court to decide on the opposition’s demands to hold a referendum on the agreement, or to submit it to the Knesset for approval – or both. There are initial indications that the Supreme Court may support the opposition’s opinion.

Uri Adiri, the chief Israeli negotiator for demarcating the maritime border with Lebanon, announced his resignation in protest of Lapid’s management of the negotiations. It seems clear that the resignation came under opposition pressure, and it is not unlikely that similar resignations will take place in the coming days.

Negotiations leading to ‘normalization’

There are also criticisms on the Lebanese side in some circles, chiefly over the notion that such negotiations are a precursor to normalization with the occupation state. Abu Saab, however, has insisted that no agreement or treaty will be signed with the Israeli enemy, and that there will be no document that includes a Lebanese signature alongside an Israeli signature.

But there are several caveats worth noting:

  • Firstly: The final version of the US-brokered proposals has not yet been agreed upon, and therefore the possibilities of returning to square one, that is, before the ‘theoretical current agreement,’ are still present.
  • Secondly: The only guarantors of this agreement are the United States and France. Experiences with US guarantees are not encouraging. As we have seen with Washington’s unilateral withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – likewise, the US guarantee of the Oslo Accord, signed at the White House on 13 September, 1993 – an American guarantee no longer invokes much confidence.
  • Thirdly: Netanyahu cannot cancel the agreement as long as it is legally approved, but he can undermine it if he wins the next legislative elections. As with the Oslo Accords – which he strongly opposed – while he could not exit the agreement, he prevented its implementation and reduced it to empty words by settling 800,000 settlers in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank.

Delaying the inevitable

Finally: We cannot rule out that these Israeli disputes between the government and the opposition are just political theater intended to stall, deceive the Lebanese, and plan ahead for the inevitable response by the Lebanese resistance movement, Hezbollah.

It should be noted that the US is Israel’s strongest global ally, that Lapid is one of Israel’s most ardent supporters of the US war against Russia in Ukraine, and that the American “mediator” Amos Hochstein is Israeli-born and served in the Israeli army.

The only reliable guarantee for Lebanon, for its oil and gas resources, for its security and stability, is the Islamic resistance represented by Hezbollah and its huge arsenal of precision missiles, advanced drones, and one hundred thousand-strong army of resistance fighters.

This is the first time in the history of Israel, since its establishment, that its government has offered concessions under the threat of arms and in fear of a war that threatens its existence. This is entirely due to Hezbollah’s refusal to allow Israel to extract gas before Lebanon has secured its own rights.

The next few days could be the most dangerous for Lebanon and the region. The utmost caution must be exercised, and every word or comma in any binding agreement must be carefully scrutinized before signing.

Remember that Netanyahu is a paper tiger, and he was subjected to humiliating defeats at the hands of the resistance in the Gaza Strip, especially in the battle of Sayf al-Quds.

The resistance is the biggest winner of this agreement so far in both in its implementation – because it is the one who imposed it with missiles and drones – and in the event of its collapse – because it is ready for all possibilities, foremost of which is war.

While the Lebanese people are peaceful, and have sought hard to secure a fair and equitable agreement over their maritime borders, they may yet be forced to militarily secure their national rights to Lebanon’s natural resources.

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In the West Bank, Resistance Rises as the PA Crumbles

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360°

The Palestinian resistance factions of the West Bank are no longer fractured and in disarray, and the results speak for themselves

The Israeli army’s recent incursions into the cities and refugee camps of the northern occupied-West Bank are not going as smoothly as before.

The occupation army’s incursions into the city of Jenin and Jenin refugee camp in early September required the mobilization of large forces, including special units and armored vehicles – in scale, unprecedented since 2014.

On the night of 6 September, a force of about 100 vehicles carried out a raid in Jenin, supported by air with drones, and on land, by hundreds of soldiers from Israel’s elite military units.

Their task? To demolish the house of Ra’ad Hazem, who carried out the Dizengoff attack in Tel Aviv on 7 April, 2022. More than anything, this excessive military build-up over a single home demolition illustrates that the Israeli military can no longer operate in the West Bank as they did before the May 2021 ‘Sayf Al Quds’ conflagration – and its subsequent developments.

After the 6 September operation – which resulted in the death of three Israelis and wounded 14 – the occupation army launched Operation ‘Break the Waves’ in response to the rapid expansion of Palestinian resistance factions and fervor in the West Bank.

The re-emergence of resistance in the West Bank

Break the Waves’ objective, according to then-Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, was to “attack without borders in order to stop the [resistance] operations” – four of which were carried out in cities in occupied territories – and to destroy the infrastructure of the resistance factions in Jenin and Nablus.

Five months after the Tel Aviv attack, the situation in the West Bank remains tense and is heading toward further escalation. In the interim, three new resistance battalions have been announced in Nablus, Tulkarm and Tubas.

Between 2007 and 2021, the resistance factions, particularly Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), remained stuck in a vicious cycle. The enemy’s surgical strikes were hindering their proactive initiatives, and until 2020, their activities were limited to the formation of fighting cells that were able to carry out one or two attacks before being incapacitated.

Since Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip in 2007, Palestinian Authority (PA) security services have fully collaborated with the occupation authorities to pursue these resistance factions, for fear of having the Gaza model repeated in the West Bank.

The genesis lies in Jenin

The rejuvenation of resistance in the occupied West Bank can be attributed to the martyr Jamil al-Amouri. A prominent figure in the Jenin camp, Amouri was considered the most “wanted” by the occupation state for carrying out several shooting attacks against Israeli positions around Jenin, during the 2021 battle of Sayf al-Quds.

He effectively contributed to the formation of active military cells inside the camp, which later went on to form the nucleus of the Jenin Brigade.

In early June 2021, Amouri was assassinated, along with Lieutenant Adham Yasser Tawfiq Alawi from Nablus, and Captain Tayseer Mahmoud Othman Eissa from Jenin. The deaths of a PIJ commander along with two officers from the PA’s Military Intelligence effectively broke the ice between the PIJ on the one hand, and the Fatah movement and members of the security services in Jenin and Nablus, on the other.

This also led to a subtle change in the popular resistance factions’ perception of the PA security services, who for years have been accused of being agents of the occupation.

As political researcher Muhammad Dargham told The Cradle: “The martyrdom of Amouri with two officers from the security services removed the veil from the eyes of many supporters of the [Palestinian] Authority and the Fatah who woke up after thirteen years and found themselves guards of security coordination with Israel.”

PIJ and Fatah: setting aside differences

According to Dargham, the killing of Amouri, Alawi, and Eissa created harmony – at least in the Jenin camp – between the Al-Quds Brigades and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades – the respective armed wings of the PIJ and Fatah.

Three months after Amouri’s murder, five Palestinian prisoners belonging to the PIJ movement, along with the leader of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, Zakaria Al-Zubaidi, managed to escape from Gilboa Prison, the most fortified of all Israeli prisons. Two of the six, Ayham Kamamji and Monadel Nafeat, managed to reach Jenin refugee camp.

By 19 September, 2021, all escapees were re-captured. However the date is also notable for the establishment of the Jenin Brigade – the first semi-organized resistance formation in the West Bank in 17 years. Importantly, while the Brigade was founded by PIJ operatives, it also consists of members of the armed wings of political rivals Hamas and Fatah.

Resistance spreads like wild fire

For many years, Israel ruled out the success of any semi-organized resistance action in the West Bank cities and refugee camps. This is due to the occupation’s adoption of a “maximum integration” policy that linked all aspects of the daily lives of Palestinians in the West Bank to Israel.

The occupation also adopted its “mowing the lawn” policy, which sought to target all resistances cells by arresting or killing its members.

These strategies were designed to send the message that any attempt to resist is doomed to failure, and the fate of those who undertake it will be life imprisonment or assassination.

However, what transpired in September 2021 was different from all Israeli estimates. The Jenin Brigade maintained its military continuity, and the attempts to storm the Jenin refugee camp became much more costly for the Israelis.

Previously, any Israeli force that invaded the camp was met with stone-throwing and firecrackers. But over the course of a year and three months, the alliance of Al-Quds Brigades and Al-Aqsa Brigades raised the bar considerably, and stands as testament to the benefits of a united armed front for the resistance.

This was noticeable about a year after the launch of the Jenin Brigade. On 24 May, 2022, clashes erupted in the area of the Prophet Joseph’s tomb, near Balata and Askar refugee camps, east of Nablus. Israeli settlers used to enter this area without any confrontation except for stone throwing.

On that day, though, the confrontations developed into an armed clash that seemed organized and with purpose. A few days later, Al-Quds Brigades issued a statement announcing the launch of the Nablus Brigade.

One month earlier, three resistance fighters from the Al-Quds Brigades were killed in a clash with the Israeli army. One of the three, Saif Abu Libdeh, from the Ain Shams camp in Tulkarem, had worked for months to establish the infrastructure for a group that would be announced six weeks after his death, under the name Tulkarem Brigade. This was followed by the formation of another battalion – the Tubas Brigade in June.

The occupation state: feeling the heat

According to the Israeli army’s Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi, the occupation forces have foiled “hundreds of operations” since the beginning of the Operation Break the Wave, and carried out more than 1,500 precautionary arrests.

Indeed, the first half of this year witnessed more than 3,700 Palestinian attacks in the West Bank, during which 21 settlers were killed and 316 wounded, including 2,692 attacks with stones, 577 with Molotov cocktails, 542 with burning tires, 33 with explosive devices, 30 with fireworks, 25 with paint bottles, 14 shootings, 1 case of hit and run, 4 cases of stabbing (with 7 foiled).

However, these numbers maybe underrepresented. For instance, in one week alone (28 August to 3 September 2022), 12 soldiers and settlers were injured, and about 90 points of confrontation were observed, including one stabbing attack, 22 shooting attacks, and 15 throwing explosive devices and Molotov cocktails.

Point of no return

There is consensus among the Israeli security establishment, think-tanks, and military analysts that the situation on the ground in the West Bank has reached a point of no return. The question that worries Israel is: Is it possible to eliminate the new resistance developments – or at least keep them confined to the northern West Bank and prevent their expansion to southern cities such as Hebron and Bethlehem, or central cities such as Jerusalem and Ramallah?

This Israeli concern is justified considering that the beginning of September bore serious consequences for the Israelis. On 4 September, three Palestinians from Jenin (a father and his two sons) shot at a bus carrying Kfir unit recruits in the Jordan Valley, injuring more than seven Israeli soldiers.

Until now, the results of the investigations have not been announced, but it seems that the attack was carefully planned in terms of timing, and choice of location, where there were fewer surveillance cameras at work.

A few days later, the Israeli army aborted an attempt by a Palestinian youth from Nablus from carrying out an operation in central Tel Aviv. The police suggested that the young man “infiltrated through a hole in the wall in the Tulkarem area,” where the army deployed three infantry battalions to thwart further attempts.

There is yet another event that suggests the resistance action in the West Bank is growing. At dawn, on Thursday 8 September, members of the Jenin Brigade detonated a locally manufactured explosive device targeting a military jeep during a raid of one of the neighboring camps.

It turned out that the device was controlled remotely, which represented a major technical development for the resistance factions, whose infrastructure was destroyed at the end of the Second Intifada.

Israelis are fanning the flames

The Israeli Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv believes that the PIJ has succeeded in transforming the northern West Bank into a hotbed of resistance, as well as in smuggling weapons and money to Palestinian cities and camps.

These concerns coincide with expressed doubts over the efficacy of Israel’s “mowing the lawn” policy, which has fueled the “vicious cycle of blood,” according to Amos Harel, a military analyst writing for Haaretz newspaper.

In an article he wrote earlier this month, Harel asked whether the Israeli army is quelling the West Bank’s flames, or actually fanning them.

Avi Iskharov, an analyst in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper, opined that Israel is facing a “new situation” that is not similar to the two previous intifadas of 1987 and 2000, pointing out that “there are pockets of Palestinian gunmen in Nablus and Jenin (in the northern West Bank), who clash almost every night with the army and shoot at Israeli targets.”

Sources close to the resistance brigades in the West Bank told The Cradle that “Israel’s concerns are exaggerated for use in the upcoming election campaign.”

“What we are seeing today is the result of years of [resistance] efforts. As the train has set off, returning to the starting point means acceptance of our mass killing, and this is out of the question,” says one Palestinian source.

Israel: The PA is not collaborating enough

The Israelis have sought to place the blame for their inability to eliminate the resistance brigades and to abort operations in the occupied territories squarely on the PA in Ramallah, who they feel are failing to fulfill their obligations.

Israel’s Kan channel quoted an Israeli official as saying that “the Palestinian security services should increase their activity in the cities of the West Bank to prevent further escalation.”

As for the Palestinians, the corruption-ridden PA is too weak to play a pivotal role in curbing the resistance which enjoys broad Palestinian popular support. Any further association made between the PA with the Israeli security campaigns will make it lose what is left of its flagging legitimacy.

The Hebrew Walla website quoted Minister of Civil Affairs Hussein al-Sheikh, the PA’s channel of communication with the Israelis, as saying: “It is Israel that has weakened the [Palestinian] Authority through daily incursions into the Palestinian areas.”

“The authority cannot accept a reality in which the army storms the occupied territories every night, then we are asked to work during the day against the militants,” added Sheikh.

A dawn of a new era in the West Bank

Meanwhile, the US has been keen to help prop up the PA and help it “restore stability,” by taking measures such as “increasing the number of work permits for Palestinians” in the occupied territories, “pumping economic aid to the Authority from various sources,” and facilitating the movement of Palestinians.

US Assistant Secretary of State for Middle Eastern Affairs Barbara Leaf, who recently visited Israel and met with senior security officials, warned that “the situation in the West Bank is worse than it appears and the future of the entire PA is under threat.”

In the early hours of 20 September, PA security forces in Nablus arrested Musab Shtayyeh, a Hamas commander wanted by Israel. Later that day, clashes broke out between the PA and hundreds of Palestinians who hit the streets in protest.

Resistance factions are demanding Shtayyeh’s immediate release and are threatening to bar the PA from Nablus until this is done.

In a video addressing the Palestinian Authority, the Palestinian resistance in Jenin cautioned: “we do not want to fight with you, but stay away from us. If you deal in kidnapping, we will also deal in kidnapping.”

The Authority’s unelected President Mahmoud Abbas is in a bind: he fears mutiny from within for collaborating with Israeli security, and fears punishment from Israel for not doing so.

By not adopting a conclusive direction, on a daily basis Abbas drains the PA of further legitimacy and authority, as demonstrated in Nablus today.

In terms of the prospects for Palestinian national liberation, this at least will be a welcome development, as the decline or demise of the western and Israeli-backed PA will open a wide door to revitalized armed resistance in the occupied West Bank.

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العدوان الإسرائيلي المُبيَّت ودور عرب التطبيع

 الخميس 11 آب 2022

أليف صباغ 

كان لا بد لحكومة الاحتلال أن توجّه عيون الرأي العام الإسرائيلي إلى موقع آخر، وأن تقوم بعمل يرفع أسهم الحكومة أمام الناخبين اليمينيين. إذن، لا بد من القيام بضربة استباقية لإضعاف الجبهة الجنوبية.

العدوان الإسرائيلي المُبيَّت ودور عرب التطبيع

ليست أول مرة، تتعاون فيها الرجعية العربية و”إسرائيل” على الشعب الفلسطيني، وعادة ما يأخذ هذا التعاون شكلاً خبيثاً، ظاهره “حماية” الفلسطينيين وباطنه كسب ودّ الاستعمار لمصالح ضيقة.

هل كان العدوان على غزة مخططاً مسبقاً؟ وما أهدافه؟

مذ اعتُقل الشيخ المجاهد بسام السعدي، ولاحظنا الحملة العسكرية الكبرى التي شنّت لتحقيق ذلك، والتي استخدمت فيها قوات الاحتلال الإسرائيلي طائرات مروحية وأخرى مسيّرة، ومصفحات وقناصين وكتيبة من الجيش والمستعربين وكلاباً بوليسية، لاعتقال شخص واحد، فهمنا أن هذه العملية العسكرية ليست عادية، إنما تشكل نموذجاً أو تجسيداً ميدانياً حقيقياً لعمليات من هذا النوع جرى التدرّب عليها من قبل. وعندما رافق ذلك حشد عسكري قرب السياج المحيط بقطاع غزة المحتل، واجتمع لبيد بالقيادات الأمنية يوم الأحد الماضي، وقرّر قطع إجازته المقررة سلفاً، وتذكرنا أن الإعلام الإسرائيلي سبق ذلك، بأسبوع، بحملة إعلامية اتّهم فيها المقاومة الفلسطينية باستخدام المدارس والمستشفيات في تخزين الصواريخ، فهمنا، يقيناً، أنه يجري الاستعداد لعملية عسكرية ضد السكان المدنيين والمقاومة في قطاع غزة، وأن المدنيين سيكونون هدفاً للعدوان. وكيف لا نفهم، ونحن من يتابع كل عدوان بما يسبقه، وما يجرى خلاله، وما يتبعه من تلخيصات ودروس وكشف ما كان مستوراً؟!

أما عن الأهداف فهي كثيرة ومتعددة الاتجاه، منها المُعلن، ومنها غير المعلن، وفق الحاجات الإعلامية السياسية. 

في الأسابيع الأخيرة شنت وسائل الإعلام اليمينية، مع اليمين الإسرائيلي المعارض حملة على حكومة لبيد-غانتس، واتهمتها بالجُبن والتقاعس عن مواجهة التحدي الذي أبدته المقاومة اللبنانية، وفق المعادلة الجديدة، التي أطلقها سماحة السيد، “ما بعد “كاريش” وما بعد بعد “كاريش”، و”إما أن نستخرج غازنا ونفطنا من البحر وإلا فلن نسمح لأحد بأن يستخرج”! هذه المعادلة شغلت الحكومة الإسرائيلية والرأي العام، وسرّعت وتيرة نشاط المبعوث الأميركي الصهيوني، أموس هوكستين، للوصول إلى حل لترسيم الحدود، وبدأت الحكومة الإسرائيلية ترجو من كل ذي صلة أن يتوسط لدى حزب الله بألا ينفذ تهديداته.

وفي الأجواء يحلّق سؤال مُلِح ومقلق، ماذا لو حصلت الحرب المتوقعة مع المقاومة اللبنانية؟ هل تستطيع “إسرائيل” أن تصمد في هذه المواجهة؟ لا سيما أن كل التقديرات تقول إن المقاومة الفلسطينية قد تنضم إلى كل حرب بين “إسرائيل” والمقاومة اللبنانية، فتكون حرباً على جبهتين على الأقل.

في مثل هذه الحالة السياسية والأمنية، كان لا بد لحكومة الاحتلال أن توجّه عيون الرأي العام الإسرائيلي وأذهانه إلى موقع آخر، وأن تقوم بعمل يرفع أسهم الحكومة أمام جمهور الناخبين اليمينيين، والرأي العام الذي يزداد يمينية وتطرفاً. إذن، لا بد من القيام بضربة استباقية لإضعاف الجبهة الجنوبية ومنعها من المشاركة في أي حرب مع حزب الله. لتحقيق ذلك كان لا بد من تقييم وضع المقاومة في القطاع المحتل. هل تستطيع قوات الاحتلال أن تشن حملة عسكرية محدودة على الجهاد الإسلامي من دون تدخل سائر الفصائل، وحماس تحديداً؟ ومن يضمن ذلك؟ 

كما اعتادت حكومات “إسرائيل” السابقة، لا بد من سفك الدماء الفلسطينية على مذبح الانتخابات، ولا بد من إزهاق الأرواح الفلسطينية وتهديم الأبراج السكنية في غزة، لأن هذا ما يرضي الناخب الإسرائيلي الصهيوني المتعطّش إلى ذلك. لكن المشكلة التي كانت تواجه حكومة الاحتلال وجيشها، كيف ستخرج من المعركة؟ وهل تستطيع أن تستفرد بفصيل صغير تلقي عليه حممها البركانية لتشعر بالقوة بدلاً من الضعف، تعيد ثقة الجيش بنفسه وترضي جمهور الناخبين اليمينيين؟ ومن يضمن ذلك؟

أما الأهداف المعلنة، التي صرحت عنها الجهات الرسمية بعد اجتماع لبيد بالكابينيت الأمني، واستبعاد السياسي، يوم الأحد 31 تموز/يوليو، فتتمثل “بالاستعداد لمنع الجهاد الإسلامي من تنفيذ عملية رد عسكرية على اعتقال القيادي بسام السعدي من مخيم جنين”. وادعت الجهات الأمنية والسياسية أن لديهم معلومات بالتخطيط للرد، ولذلك قاموا بإجراءات منع تجوال للمستوطنين في مستوطنات “غلاف غزة”، المقامة على أراضي اللاجئين الفلسطينيين الذين يعيشون ببؤس في القطاع المحاصر منذ 15 سنة. وفي الحقيقة كان كل ذلك ضمن حلقات الاستعداد النفسي والسياسي لسيناريو العدوان المُبيّت.

في تقييم الظروف الملائمة للقيام بعدوان غادر

لتقييم الظروف المناسبة للعدوان وشق صف المقاومة، اعتمدت سلطات الاحتلال على ثلاثة مصادر من المعلومات: 

أولاً: خبرة ومتابعة وتقييم مراكز الأبحاث الإسرائيلية، ومنها مركز أبحاث الأمن القومي، وضمن ذلك، التمييز بين مصالح حماس من جهة، والجهاد الإسلامي من جهة ثانية، إضافة إلى مصلحة مصر والاستخبارات المصرية تحديداً في تقليم أظافر “الجهاد” من دون تدخل “حماس” وسائر فصائل المقاومة المسلحة، معتمدة في ذلك على دور الاستخبارات المصرية في معركة “سيف القدس”، وما تبعها من معارك صغيرة، الأخيرة فيها مسيرة الأعلام الاستفزازية في القدس القديمة، واقتحامات المستوطنين في حزيران/يونيو الماضي، ودور مصر وقطر في منع تدخل المقاومة من غزة. 

ثانياً: أما المصدر الثاني، فهو ما تستخلصه الاستخبارات من خلال مئات المحادثات غير المباشرة التي تجرى مع عمال فلسطينيين تم السماح لهم دخول “إسرائيل” والعمل فيها خلال الشهر الماضي، وبلغ عدد التصاريح 14 ألف تصريح. هذه المحادثات لا تجري من خلال تحقيق يجريه الشاباك مع العمال، إنما هي أحاديث، تبدو عادية، تجري بين المشغل الإسرائيلي والعامل الفلسطيني، أو بين صحافي إسرائيلي وعامل فلسطيني، لتصل إلى الباحثين في صفوف الشاباك مادة تضاف إلى التقييمات والأبحاث، تعزز فرضية أو ترفضها.

ثالثاً: الأهم من هذا المصدر وذاك التقييم المشترك مع الاستخبارات المصرية للأوضاع في غزة، وعلاقات الفصائل فيما بينها وقدرة الجمهور الفلسطيني على احتمال التضحيات، وقدرة مصر على ضبط إيقاع وردود المقاومة من غزة، وتدخلها في الوقت الملائم، لمنع تدحرج المعركة واتساعها وتورط قوات الاحتلال تالياً بما لم تكن مستعدة له. من هنا قال البيان الإسرائيلي الرسمي إن العدوان جاء بناء على توصيات القيادة العسكرية والشاباك، والمقصود هنا هم الباحثون الذي يتواصلون مع نظرائهم المصريين. وعليه، جاء التواصل الإسرائيلي المصري من اليوم الأول بعد اعتقال السعدي، وشن العدوان ضمن الأهداف المحددة له، كما راقب الطيران المسيّر تحركات القادة الفلسطينيين خلال لقائهم الاستخبارات المصرية حتى الساعة الأخيرة قبل العدوان، ويقول رئيس تحرير صحيفة “الأهرام”: “إن إسرائيل وعدت الاستخبارات المصرية أن تكون العملية العسكرية محدودة، وموجّهة ضد “الجهاد الإسلامي” فقط”.

دور الاستخبارات المصرية وغيرها

للتفصيل أكثر، يتمثل دور الاستخبارات المصرية وجهات عربية أخرى في ثلاثة مستويات ومراحل

أولاً: في تقييم مشترك مع الاستخبارات الإسرائيلية والباحثين المختصين بالظروف الداخلية في القطاع، وفي العلاقة بين قوى المقاومة ومصالح كل منها، لمعرفة ما إن كانت الظروف ملائمة لشن العدوان وإمكان تحقيق أهدافه. ولا يتورع “الخبراء”، العسكريون والأمنيون المصريون عن الإدلاء بتقييماتهم هذه على شاشات التلفزة الإسرائيلية أيضاً.

ثانياً: في ضبط إيقاع الرد من المقاومة، من خلال الضغوط والتهديدات.

ثالثاً: في الوصول إلى وقف إطلاق النار أو تهدئة، حين تحتاج “إسرائيل” إلى ذلك، وفق الشروط الإسرائيلية، لكن إخراج هذه النهاية يتطلب أن تبدو وكأنها مبادرة مصرية، تقوم بموجبها الاستخبارات المصرية بتقديم “ضمانات” إلى المقاومة، وقد ثبت من تجربة المعارك السابقة، أنها ضمانات فارغة، وهي مجرد تضليل للرأي العام العربي عامة والفلسطيني خاصة، لأن “إسرائيل” لا تقدم إلى مصر إلا الفتات الذي يحفظ ما وجهها. في النهاية، هي جهود مصرية تهدف إلى إرضاء السيد الأميركي والإسرائيلي، بحثاً عن مصالح مصرية ضيقة أو مصالح شخصية لهذه الشخصية أو تلك. 

ليس صحيحاً أن “إسرائيل” خدعت الاستخبارات المصرية، وهي تدعي في كل جولة أن “إسرائيل” خدعتها، وأن “إسرائيل” لم تفِ بوعودها، وفي تنفيذ الاتفاقيات، أين هي الاتفاقيات؟ إذا كان الأمر كذلك فلماذا تعلنون اتفاقيات وتفاهمات، وتعودون إلى تقديم الضمانات الفارغة؟ إن المشاركة الفعلية في تقييم الظروف الملائمة لشن العدوان يحتم المعرفة المسبّقة لنيات “إسرائيل” العدوانية.

من يراجع تصريحات المسؤولين الإسرائيليين والمصريين قبل العدوان وخلاله، وغداة وقف إطلاق النار، والتعبير عن رضاهم عن الدور المصري، لا بد أن يصل إلى هذه الحقيقة. وكان أكثر التصريحات توضيحاً ودلالة على الدور المصري، هو المديح الذي كاله الرئيس بايدن، بعد بضع ساعات من وقف إطلاق النار، للدور المصري والقطري في الوصول إلى وقف لإطلاق النار، مع التذكير بأن أميركا هي من أعطى “إسرائيل” الضوء الأخضر لشن هذا العدوان من خلال الإعلان عن إبلاغ غانتس نظيره الأميركي، أوستن، بذلك، ووقوف بايدن إلى جانب “إسرائيل” في عدوانها منذ اليوم الأول، بذريعة “الدفاع عن النفس”. فلو كانت أميركا محبة لوقف إطلاق النار، أو منع سفك الدماء الفلسطينية فعلاً، لما أعطت الضوء الأخضر للعدوان؟ 

في تقييم النتائج

الحقيقة أن “سرايا القدس” لم “تنتصر”، بالمعنى التكتيكي لجولة واحدة، على “إسرائيل”، لكنها أثبتت أن “الجهاد الإسلامي” قادر على الصمود، وعلى إدارة معركة دفاعية ومعنوية تحفظ وفاءه لأرواح الشهداء ودماء الجرحى وعذابات الأسرى في معتقلات العدو الصهيوني، ووحدة الساحات الفلسطينية. الجهاد كانت وحدها في وجه جيش قوي يتمتع بقدرات عسكرية كبيرة، بل يدّعي أنه من أقوى الجيوش في العالم، وهذا الصمود هو ما يقلق الخبراء الإسرائيليين في الوقت الحاضر. وتساءل عدد منهم، على شاشات التلفزة الإسرائيلية، كيف ستواجه “إسرائيل” حزب الله، وهو يمتلك قدرات عسكرية ولوجستية أضعاف أضعاف ما تمتلكه سرايا القدس؟ كيف ستواجه حزب الله، وهو غير محاصر من دولة “شقيقة”، ولا يخضع لأي ضغوط من استخبارات عربية موجَّهة من الولايات المتحدة و”إسرائيل”؟

في غضون ثلاثة أيام، وعلى الرغم من الخسارات الكبيرة التي تكبدها “سرايا القدس”، باغتيال القادة العسكريين الكبار منذ اللحظة الأولى للعدوان، وعلى الرغم من ضغوط “الأشقاء” العرب، وقدرات الطيران الحربي الإسرائيلي، إلا أن سرايا القدس استطاعت أن تطلق ما يقارب 1000 صاروخ باتجاه قوات العدو، أي بمعدل 300 صاروخ يومياً، وهذا يساوي المعدل اليومي لما أطلقته قوى المقاومة مجتمعةً في غزة إبّان العدوان الإسرائيلي في أيار/مايو 2021 المسمّى إسرائيلياً “حامي الأسوار”. ولم يكن هذا منتظراً قطّ.

علينا أن نفهم، أنه لم يحن وقت الانتصار بعد، وأننا ما زلنا في حدود الصمود في وجه العدوان الصهيوني المدعوم من الاستعمار والرجعية العربية التابعة للبيت الأبيض. ومع ذلك، على منظمة الجهاد الإسلامي أن تراجع تجربتها بموضوعية ومسؤولية لتجنب نقاط الضعف، وتعزيز نقاط القوة، وبذل جهود أكثر لفهم مخططات العدو وخطر علاقاته بالأنظمة العربية المطبّعة، وخصوصاً الاستخبارات المصرية. على المقاومة الفلسطينية عامة أن تراجع مواقفها من هذه المعركة تحديداً، ومن معارك أخرى، وأن تحذر كل الحذر من التعاون القائم بين الاستخبارات العربية والإسرائيلية برعاية أميركية، على العامل الفلسطيني في “إسرائيل” أن يحذر أحاديث تبدو بريئة، وهي في الحقيقة أحاديث خبيثة تهدف إلى استطلاع الراي العام الفلسطيني وظروف المقاومة، وعلى قوى المقاومة أن تتخذ كل الخطوات التي من شأنها التحرر من ضغوط وقيود “الأشقاء”… 

“من جرّب المجرّب كان عقله مخرّب”.

فيديوات ذات صلة

مقالات ذات صلة

Sword of Jerusalem II has begun and there is no room for negotiation

Israel may have miscalculated, again. The PIJ resistance it has brutally targeted in Gaza and the West Bank wants to take this confrontation until the liberation of Palestine

August 06 2022

By Abdel Bari Atwan

Only about half of the 160 rockets (Israel says 400+) fired by Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) on the mass of Israeli settlements flanking the Gaza Strip were intercepted by Israel’s US-funded Iron Dome systems.

This, in itself, is a major military and psychological achievement for the Palestinian resistance. The settlers have lost their security, their time to leave has come.

The PIJ cleverly handled the pre-battle phase by stepping up armed military confrontations in the West Bank, entering into strategic operational coordination with Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade – particularly in Jenin, Nablus and Tulkarem – and besieging and forcing a curfew on more than 1.5 million Israelis in the southern settlements adjacent to the Gaza Strip.

These confrontations were in retaliation for Israel’s targeting of PIJ’s cadres throughout Palestinian territories this summer. But it was the Israeli leadership which decided on war and must take responsibility for the consequences of its decision, regionally and internationally. The PIJ lured Tel Aviv to war without firing a single missile, and herein lies the miracle.

A war or a skirmish?

The battle is still in its infancy, and in its first two days was limited to the PIJ alone, which stands with its resistance fighters in the face of the mighty Israeli military machine.

The participation of other Palestinian factions in the battlefield, especially Hamas, is still not excluded.

The PIJ’s announcement on Saturday that its military forces are mobilized and prepared may be the first step to what comes next.

It is Israel that began the airstrikes and violated its commitments to previous agreements, most notably by initiating and executing a campaign to assassinate PIJ leaders: most recently Tayseer Al-Jabari, their field commander in the Gaza Strip, and a number of his fellow fighters. For this, Tel Aviv will now have to pay a heavy price.

The resistance in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and their constituents are rushing to join Hamas and its fighters, missiles, drones, and frogmen into the confrontation; to provide protection to the more than two million Palestinians currently under Israel’s absolute rule in Gaza.

The most frequent question asked in the West Bank and Gaza Strip today is “where are Abu Obeida, Mohammad Deif, and Yahya al-Sinwar?” – in reference to the military spokesman of Hamas’ Al-Qassam Brigades, its supreme military commander, and Hamas’ political leader in Gaza, respectively. “How long will they be absent from this battle?”

Israel’s big problem 

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz may have launched the airstrikes on the Gaza Strip on Friday, but he will not be the one to decide the battle’s conclusion. As in the Sword of Jerusalem (Saif al-Quds) conflagration in May 2021, which Gantz incorrectly predicted would last at least a week, he cannot control the outcome of this fight.

That May, to Israel’s utter horror and confusion, for the first time in decades, West Bank, Gaza and 1948 Palestinians banded together to confront Israel over its provocative storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem. In one short month, Tel Aviv’s decades-long systematic efforts to separate and compartmentalize these three Palestinian areas was decimated.

Gantz, his army, and his prime minister (Benjamin Netanyahu) were impotent in the face of the multi-front Palestinian response. It was US President Joe Biden who begged Egyptian mediators for a quick intervention because Israel could not sustain the repercussions of one more missile hitting Tel Aviv.

Will Hamas join the fight?

It is clear that Hamas cannot stand by while Israeli raids kill children and bomb towers in the Gaza Strip.

Although somewhat restrained by its Turkish and Arab allies, Hamas – a resistance partner to the PIJ – must ultimately listen to its Palestinian, Arab and Muslim constituents, or risk losing much in the short and medium term.

Daoud Shihab, spokesman for the PIJ’s Al-Quds Brigades, has already said “No” to Arab mediators led by Egypt. The PIJ believes that this is not the time to calm down, but to confront Israel’s aggression, avenge the Palestinian martyrs and ask:

How dare the mediators resume their efforts, talk about ceasefires, and try to halt a justified Palestinian response. Did the Israeli enemy respect its commitments to rebuild the Gaza Strip, refrain from assassinating the leaders of the resistance, and ease years of a harrowing siege?

“We have been deceived by the mediators,” says Mohammad Al Hindi, a member of the Political Bureau of the PIJ movement.

When General Benny Gantz says that his current Gaza operation is to strike the entire PIJ network – in parallel with strikes directed by his security forces in the West Bank – he reveals his plan for a “fitna” (inner rebellion) to tear apart the unity of the resistance and instigate a factional war between the PIJ and Hamas movements. Greater awareness and discipline is required to thwart Gantz’s plan, specifically by Hamas.

On Friday night, the PIJ’s Secretary General Ziad Al-Nakhala declared in an on-air interview with Al-Mayadeen that this war is open: there are no red lines and it will continue until victory.

Nakhala also said he may issue instructions to the PIJ delegation to refuse Egyptian mediation in Cairo, and halt ceasefire negotiations that will serve Israel’s interests only and save Tel Aviv from this trap it fell into with eyes wide open.

A war until liberation?

This is a war that will last. It comes as a precious gift to the Palestinian people and their resistance, and the coming days will reveal shocking and terrifying surprises for the Israelis that will send millions of them into shelters and global isolation.

Hezbollah’s Hisham Safieddine, executive council chairman of the Lebanese resistance movement, recently said: “The resistance has obtained strategic weapons that will break the balance of power, and the enemy’s attempt to prevent their arrival has failed.”

To this he added: “we must be present and not be affected by propaganda media campaigns that want to undermine our capabilities – by the Israeli, US and Gulf media and some of their ‘mignons’ in Lebanon. We will not give up our wealth [natural resources] in our territorial waters,” which means that the gas war is very imminent.

We are facing a war that may have begun in the Gaza Strip, but could, with just one ill-timed spark, transform into a regional war involving many other resistance factions. This comes at a time when western colonialism is facing two major power wars – in Ukraine (with Russia) and East Asia (with China).

Millions anticipating the appearance of Hamas’ Abu Obeida with his red kefiyah may not have to wait long. The Sword of Jerusalem II is in the running to be a much larger and more dangerous confrontation than the Sword of Jerusalem I.

Airports may close very soon, and thousands of Israeli settlers may take to the seas in search of safety from the retaliatory missiles of the resistance. Watch this space and its developments in the coming days.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

حماس في قلب محور المقاومة

الثلاثاء 28 حزيران 2022

فلسطين 

ابراهيم الأمين 

الضغوط التي تتعرض لها حركة حماس من جهات فلسطينية أو عربية أو دولية تكاد تكون الأولى من نوعها في تاريخ الحركة. ورغم أن التنظيم الإسلامي الفلسطيني لم يكن بعيداً عن التأثيرات السلبية لانهيار تجربة الإخوان المسلمين في الحكم في عدد من الدول العربية، إلا أن تثبيت حماس قاعدة تفكيرها ونشاطها وبرنامجها على أساس أولوية المقاومة ضد الاحتلال، ساعدها على البقاء في قلب المشهد، وفتح لها الأبواب لترميم شبكة واسعة من العلاقات العربية والإسلامية وحتى الدولية من باب المقاومة.

في السنوات العشر الماضية، غرقت الحركة في موجة من المواقف السياسية التي أدت الى تضرّر صورتها كحركة مقاومة. ومثلما تعرّض حزب الله في لبنان لحملة بسبب وقوفه الى جانب الدولة السورية في مواجهة الحرب عليها، تعرضت حماس لحملة من التيار المقابل، واتُّهمت بمجاراة برنامج الإخوان المسلمين الهادف الى الاستيلاء على الحكم في عدد من الدول العربية، حتى إن قواعد من الحركة دعمت الحروب الأهلية التي وقعت في أكثر من بلد عربي؛ منها سوريا.
لكنّ تبدلاً جدياً طرأ منذ ما بعد حرب عام 2014، وتطور الأمر بعد انتخاب قيادة جديدة للحركة عام 2017. وبعد استرداد كتائب القسام المبادرة وجعل الأولوية المطلقة للمقاومة، بدا أن الحركة تتقدم خطوات سريعة باتجاه الخروج نهائياً من دائرة التجاذبات حيال ما يجري داخل كل دولة عربية، وهو ما سهّل لها استئناف التواصل مع مصر ومع حكومات عربية أخرى في بلاد الشام أو الخليج أو المغرب العربي. ورغم أن تركيا سهّلت للحركة إقامة مريحة لقيادتها السياسية، إلا أن حماس بدت أكثر تصميماً على الانخراط في الجبهة التي تعدّ المقاومة خياراً وحيداً وإلزامياً ومجدياً لتحقيق التحرير.

سيكون محور المقاومة أمام وقائع جديدة بعد التفاهمات التي توصّل إليها هنيّة ونصر الله


خلال العامين الماضيين، تقدمت حماس خطوات كبيرة الى الأمام في سياق التموضع ضمن محور المقاومة. وجاءت معركة سيف القدس لتختبر التفاعل العملاني مع القوى الأساسية في المحور. وأظهرت تطورات الأشهر القليلة الماضية أن السعي الأميركي – الإسرائيلي – السعودي – الإماراتي لبناء جبهة سياسية واقتصادية وأمنية وإعلامية تعمل على مواجهة محور المقاومة، أن على حماس تعزيز خيارها وموقعها داخل محور المقاومة. وهي اتخذت قرارات كبيرة، لا تدخلها في صدام مع أحد، وخصوصاً مع تركيا وقطر، ولكن لا تمنعها من تعزيز علاقتها مع قوى المقاومة بدءاً بإيران، وصولاً الى حزب الله في لبنان وأنصار الله في اليمن، وحتى إطلاق اتصالات أولية مع فصائل المقاومة في العراق. ولكن الخطوة الأهم تمثلت في قرار المكتب السياسي استئناف العلاقة مع سوريا، وإفساح المجال أمام الوسطاء الذين ينشطون بين القيادة السورية وقيادة حماس للتقدم أكثر صوب تحقيق المصالحة التي تقول قيادة الحركة إنها تحتاج إليها من أجل تعزيز المقاومة.

حماس اليوم أمام تحديات جديدة. وكلما زاد تمسكها بخيار المقاومة، ستجد أنها أكثر ثباتاً داخل فلسطين وأكثر حضوراً وفعالية في المنطقة العربية، وسيكون محور المقاومة أمام وقائع جديدة بعد الزيارة الأخيرة لرئيس الحركة إسماعيل هنية لبيروت وطبيعة المناقشات والتفاهمات التي توصّل إليها مع الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصر الله بعد سلسلة من اللقاءات بينهما…

تهديد غانتس و«إسرائيل» «رجل المنطقة المريض»

 الجمعة 24 حزيران 2022

 ناصر قنديل

لو اكتفى وزير حرب كيان الاحتلال بني غانتس بالقول إن دماراً كبيراً سيلحق بلبنان في أية حرب مقبلة، لما كان كلامه موضوعاً للتدقيق، انطلاقاً من أن القدرة النارية لجيش الاحتلال على إلحاق مثل هذا الدمار، ليست موضع نقاش، بل ما كان سيناقش هو المقارنة بين حجم الخسائر التي ستلحق بلبنان مقارنة بما سيلحق بكيان الاحتلال، في ضوء تطوّر قدرات المقاومة، خصوصاً بعدما أعلن الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله عن أن خسائر الكيان في أية حرب مقبلة ستزيد عن خسائر لبنان، وهذا أول تصريح من نوعه بهذا المضمون يصدر عن السيد نصرالله، الموصوف بدقة معادلاته، وعدم سماحه الانفعال والحماس أن يدخلا على صياغتها، واعتماده في الحرب النفسية التي يخوضها على معادلات واقعية مدروسة بتحفظ شديد، كما يصفه خبراء الكيان.

كلام غانتس لا يأتي بعد عام 1982 والانسحاب الإسرائيلي من بيروت، ولا بعد العام 2000 والانسحاب الاسرائيلي من لبنان، بل بعد اختبار جيش الاحتلال فرضية امتلاكه قدرة الدرع الكافية لإلحاق الهزيمة بالمقاومة، في حرب عام 2006، والفشل الذريع الذي مني به جيش الاحتلال في هذه الحرب، ليس بمجرد الفشل في تحقيق هدف سحق حزب الله، أو تجريده من قدرته الصاروخية كحد أدنى أول، أو تطويقه بضوابط دولية رادعة محكمة تمثلت بمشروع نشر قوات متعددة الجنسيات في جنوب لبنان وفق الفصل السابع كحد أدنى ثان، بل بالفشل المكلف الذي أصاب جيش الاحتلال في محاولة الدخول إلى الأراضي اللبنانية، وهي مضمون الحرب البرية التي خاضتها أولية النخبة في جيوش البر والقوات المدرعة التابعة لجيش الاحتلال لأكثر من عشرين يوماً من أيام الحرب الثلاثة والثلاثين، بعدما فشل استنفاد القصف الجوي والبحري والبري فرصه في تحقيق وقف تساقط صواريخ المقاومة على عمق الكيان، وكانت الحصيلة خسائر موصوفة دمرت خلالها عشرات الدبابات وقتل خلالها وأصيب مئات الجنود والضباط، دون تحقيق أي اختراق جدي في خط الحدود، وليس فقط في الوصول إلى المدن الحدودية كبنت جبيل ومرجعيون، فكيف الحديث عن صور وصيدا …وبيروت!

خلال السنوات التي أعقبت حرب 2006 امتلأت القراءات الاستراتيجية لمراكز الدراسات الإسرائيلية والأميركية، بما فيها الحكومية منها، ومثلها تصريحات كبار القادة السياسيين والعسكريين، بالحديث المتكرر عن تعاظم قوة حزب الله، بالتوازي مع الاعتراف بالفشل في امتلاك القدرة على احتواء هذا التعاظم، سواء عبر الغارات التي تستهدف سورية، او الرهان على تداعيات الحرب السورية، او الاستثمار على تغيير البيئة السياسية اللبنانية، والكلام عن مخاطر التورط في حرب جديدة تزامن مع نتائج أثبتتها مواجهات جيش الاحتلال مع قوى المقاومة في غزة، قبل عام خلال معركة سيف القدس، حيث فشل جيش الاحتلال في تحقيق الردع الموهوم، وعجز قادته عن اتخاذ القرار المكلف بخوض حرب برية، فكيف يستقيم القول عن أن هذا الجيش جاهز لخوض حرب يتجاوز فيها هدف استعادة المهابة، ورد الاعتبار، وتحقيق الردع للتهديد بالوصول، ليس الى بنت جبيل ومرجعيون، بل الى صور وصيدا… وصولاً الى بيروت؟

كلام غانتس سيصبح موضوعاً للتندر والسخرية، كما هو كلام وزير حربية السلطنة العثمانية أنور باشا قبيل الحرب العالمية الأولى، عندما هدد بدخول موسكو، كما يهدد غانتس بدخول بيروت، والحرب بدأت بالمناسبة من بوابة مواجهة بحرية، وكما كانت تركيا العثمانية قد أصبحت رجل أوروبا المريض قبل أن تسقط بالضربة القاضية، يبدو كيان الاحتلال اليوم رجل المنطقة المريض، في حالة النزع يهلوس ويروّح عن النفس بالثرثرة.

‘Israeli’ Military to Hold Drills near Gaza Border This Week

June 13 2022

By Staff, Agencies

The ‘Israeli’ occupation army will hold military exercises on Monday and Tuesday near the border with the Gaza Strip.

The Zionist military said explosions could be heard in communities in the area, stressing however that the movement of civilians will not be affected by the drills.

The ‘Israeli’ occupation military has conducted in recent weeks a vast military exercise involving combat planes over the Mediterranean and warships in the Red Sea, in order to prepare for different “scenarios” facing Iran.

It was to hold a scenario-based exercise in May 2021 of a conflict with the Palestinians that would extend to the northern border with Lebanon and Syria and even beyond, but it was postponed due to the war on Gaza.

After a year’s delay, the Zionist military launched the exercise to prepare for “near and far” combat, including a drill conducted by dozens of warplanes over the Mediterranean Sea that carried out “long distance,” “resupply” flights and “remote target strikes.”

According to the ‘Israeli’ press, the exercise simulated a large-scale attack against Iran, in particular against nuclear sites.

The military confirmed that it is “continuously preparing and training for multiple scenarios including threats from Iran.”

Part of the exercise took place off Cyprus, as well as in residential areas on the eastern Mediterranean island.

Also within the framework of these maneuvers, the ‘Israeli’ army conducted an exercise with two warships and a submarine in the Red Sea to “achieve maritime superiority” and “maintain freedom of action in the region.”

The Zionist military’s strategic plan for 2022 identifies Iran as the top threat, not only because of its nuclear program but also its developing armed drone and missile capabilities.

Israel’s flag march: Will it trigger the inevitable war in Palestine?

Israel is desperate to re-establish the ‘deterrence equation’ it lost last May, while the Palestinian resistance intends to do everything necessary to maintain and advance it.

May 28 2022

Photo Credit: The Cradle

By Abdelrahman Nassar

After enduring heavy Israeli provocations during the holy month of Ramadan, Palestinians will be tested again this Sunday with the Flag March – an annual Jewish celebration of the 1967 capture of Palestine’s Old City in East Jerusalem.

Tensions are rife in Jerusalem. This year and next, Ramadan falls on the same month as Jewish religious holidays, each offering a pretext for Israeli extremists to taunt, injure, and kill Palestinians in occupied lands.

So if Sunday’s march doesn’t provoke a conflagration, there is still 2023 to contend with.

Israel can no longer control outcomes

For years, Israel has been surveilling Palestinian movements in an effort to predict the eruption of a new uprising (Intifada), but has been unable to determine when it will take place.

Last March, for example, a report by the Israeli Internal Security Agency (Shin Bet) identified several incidents that could lead to a large-scale confrontation in Palestine – and the likely locations for it. And, indeed, the expected happened.

But what the Shin Bet report did not say was that Israel itself is pushing for this confrontation so that it can choose the time and place in order to try to control the outcome.

The evidence abounds: Israel allows hundreds, even thousands, of extremist settlers a free hand to storm Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem to perform Jewish Passover rites at the Muslim site. This year, they were not allowed to conduct animal sacrifices inside courtyard of the Mosque, but that may happen next year.

The Israeli army accompanies and protects Jewish settlers during their attacks on Palestinian cities, towns, and villages of the occupied West Bank. The examples are countless; the difficulty is in predicting the results of the ensuing clashes.

Tel Aviv seeks an escalation of tensions, but without a Palestinian reaction. While Israel presents itself as a secular state, its barely veiled ambition is to Judaize Al-Aqsa Mosque and build the Temple of David over its ruins.

Israel’s strategy is to emulate the Ibrahimi Mosque model in Hebron: to incrementally divide Al-Aqsa by allocating times for Jews to perform religious rites within the courtyards of the mosque – then expand those rights. This is significantly equal to the construction of a Temple.

Palestinians thwarted Israel’s efforts during both this and last year’s Ramadan. Last month, their resistance factions were careful – particularly in the Gaza Strip – not to engage in a bloody confrontation, but allowed Palestinians in the West Bank, Jerusalem, and the 1948 areas to rise up instead.

The Flag March provocation

Israel’s right-wing government and parties know full well that canceling the Flag March – or even diverting its path away from Al-Aqsa – constitutes a submission to the Palestinian resistance factions.

Palestinians are now demanding the marchers be prevented from entering the Muslim Quarter of the Old City and Bab al-Amud. This is a dangerous request for a state like Israel that relies mainly on the principle of deterrence and the excessive use of force to subjugate its opponents.

The two reported routes that Israeli extremists will take through Jerusalem’s Old City before converging at the Al-Aqsa Mosque

About a week ago, Yedioth Ahronoth reported that the Israeli security establishment was preparing for the Flag March with “high alertness for the possibility of escalation,” pointing out that “all the bodies, the Shin Bet, the army and the police, recommended that the march take place as planned.”

In short, the very security establishment that ostensibly seeks to quash opportunities for a Palestinian intifada, are recommending that Jewish marchers traipse through the historically sensitive Bab al-Amud.

The Israeli security establishment has warned that any change in the route “will be interpreted as Israeli weakness,” and has recommended a “fierce response” to any Palestinian action.

Although Israel claims it is ready for further clashes with Gaza, it tried to avoid this outcome during Ramadan. It seems, however, that Tel Aviv’s calculations have changed after a series of developments, which include Hamas Gaza Leader Yahya Sinwar’s threat – in a speech at the end of Ramadan – that the resistance will wage a war to defend its victories in the May 2021 Sayf Al Quds battle over the sanctity of Jerusalem.

The perceived higher threat level has made Israeli police, in several subsequent provocative activities organized by Jewish settlers, reduce their numbers in Al-Aqsa and ban them from raising Israeli flags.

Internal political collapse

Domestically, Israel is in trouble. The government of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is in imminent danger of collapse. That possibility appears to increase if he shows inaction or failure in dealing with security issues, whether in the occupied West Bank or in the Gaza Strip.

Bennett’s government is under pressure from parties even further to his right, who represent a large number of Israeli votes that he does not want to lose. And hawkish former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, eager to return to the post he occupied for 15 years, is nipping at Bennett’s heels.

Amid the internal political crisis, Israel’s security establishment fears losing much of its deterrent power against Palestinian resistance factions, newly armed with enhanced missile technology, drone capabilities, and unprecedented field coordination. Indeed, the Israelis have come to feel that the factions are controlling the internal scene.

Is war imminent?

There are a number of indicators that a confrontation is more likely to unfold in the next few days than at any time this year.

First, on 9 May, the Israeli army launched its largest ever military exercise, Chariots of Fire, which involves nearly all units of the Israeli army, and simulates the outbreak of war on several fronts with Gaza, Lebanon, Syria, and Iran.

Second, since the start of the maneuver, increased flights of reconnaissance planes – AWACS and others – have been observed over Gaza. Sources in the resistance factions interpret this as an attempt by the Israeli army to accumulate a new target bank to be used in any upcoming confrontation.

Third, Palestinian factions have raised their alert levels since the start of Israel’s military maneuvers. According to sources in Gaza, there are strict measures on the movements of the senior resistance military leaders and precautionary measures in the movement of monitoring units, as well as the cancellation of training courses.

Fourth, from a wholly Israeli point of view, the army believes it has not taken any action against Gaza since 2008. In its mind, in both 2014 and 2021, it was the resistance that decided to ‘launch a confrontation’ after Israel’s many provocations against Palestinians, including attacks, assassinations, and sieges.

But the Sayf al Quds (Sword of Jerusalem) war in May 2021, was the most dangerous Israel has encountered in recent decades. Small-scale Israeli aggressions in Jerusalem provoked all the occupied territories and unified Gaza, the West Bank, Jerusalem and 1948 Palestinians – depriving the Israeli security establishment of their ability to compartmentalize and control each of these four ‘units.’

For this fifth reason, there is an urgent Israeli need to re-establish the psychology of deterrence and to rearrange the Palestinian scene into a manageable and predictable state.

Sixth, the resistance estimates that Israel may take advantage of current tensions to carry out assassinations of their most influential leaders, especially Yahya Sinwar, Ziad al-Nakhaleh, Muhammad al-Deif and Marwan Issa. These leaders have contributed heavily to the increase in Israel’s threat perception by keeping their ranks battle-ready and by unifying the Gaza, Jerusalem and West Bank arenas of confrontation.

In anticipation of renewed targeted killings, Hamas Political Bureau Leader Ismail Haniyeh issued a warning in an 18 May letter to regional mediating states that any assassination policy adopted by Tel Aviv would lead to a major war. The resistance believes that Israel will use the cover of ongoing military maneuvers to direct a severe blow to their command and control centers in order to contain a harsh Palestinian reaction.

On the seventh point, noting that the Gaza resistance has not escalated its rhetoric – setting a date for firing rockets, for example – Israel decided to proceed with the Flag March, providing that another security assessment is conducted on the night prior.

As a Palestinian security source told The Cradle: “Something unusual should have happened to change the course of the march, because the threats until this moment are low-level.”

Then, in yet another unfolding development, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah, in his 25 May speech commemorating the liberation of southern Lebanon, announced – on behalf of the entire Axis of Resistance – that the attack on Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock “will lead to the detonation of the region.”

In the following hours, the plan for the Israeli Flag March was temporarily halted and attempts were made to reduce the heat. According to Israel Hayom newspaper, directly after Nasrallah’s speech, Israel made contact with Egypt, the United Nations, and Qatar to prevent further escalation.

Palestinian resistance factions, however, are in a state of absolute preparedness. They know not to be placated by deceptive Israeli statements, because they continue to observe active Israeli preparations on the ground. A resistance security source says Tel Aviv is frantic, and that there is an “urgent Israeli strategic interest to undermine the state of mutual deterrence between the resistance and the occupation.” Nothing will move Israel from this obsession to establish perceived strength.

The most clear expression of this was voiced by Yossi Yehoshua in Yedioth Ahronoth when he wrote that “all [Israeli] security chiefs warn that changing the course of the Flag March at the last minute will be interpreted as weakness.”

It’s getting hot in here

It is important to understand that the Israeli army pronounced Gaza “deterred” in May 2021, just before battles broke out across occupied Palestine. The Israeli army believed that Gaza would not react because it feared another Israeli military operation. Israel’s military establishment has, once again, made that same assessment this year.

But this is not necessarily true. The last hours leading up to Sunday’s Flag March may carry a new statement by the Chief of Staff of Al-Qassam Brigades Muhammad al-Deif, in which he renews intent to establish red lines around Al-Aqsa Mosque and Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem.

Gaza resistance sources confirmed to The Cradle that although they tried to preserve the ‘deterrence equation’ without entering into a new confrontation during Ramadan, there is a strict decision to prevent Israel from reversing the advantages gained from last May’s Sayf al Quds war. Such a reversal, one source adds, “will mean an acceleration in the Judaization of the Holy City.”

Hours from now, 16,000 Jewish settlers will rally for the Flag March, waving Israel flags in besieged Palestinian areas, to signal their absolute sovereignty over the city, its neighborhoods, and its holy sites.

Until Sunday, many international and regional mediations will take place behind the scenes in an attempt to reach a solution. However, even if the event in Jerusalem passes without escalation, there are no indications that the operations in the Palestinian cities or the clashes in the West Bank will stop.

In the West Bank, the scene is developing quickly. The Jenin Brigade model has been replicated in other cities, such as Nablus and Tulkarm. Entering these cities, with their vast areas and overcrowded, heavily armed camps, will make staying on the brink of confrontation a permanent situation.

This scene, with all its details, suggests that periods of calm have become a thing of the past. Israel is well aware of this. The resistance factions believe that a battle is inevitable – if not now, then very soon, but they will not allow it to be on “the date set by the Israelis.”

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

al-Aqsa Mosqueflag marchGazaHamasIsmail Haniyeh

New Details Unveiled about Last Year’s Operation Al-Quds Sword

May 28, 2022 

By Staff

The leader and member of al-Qassam Brigades’ Supreme Military Council Mohammad al-Sinwar unveiled new details on last year’s Operation al-Quds Sword, in addition to elaborating on the most important decisions that were made by the Palestinian resistance factions.

Sinwar noted that the last strike the Palestinian resistance suspended at the end of the May 2021 war against Gaza was set to include 362 rockets to be launched towards 14 cities and settlements including Haifa, Tel Aviv, Dimona, Eilat, and Bir Sabe’.

In a TV interview conducted by al-Jazeera Network, the Hamas military wing’s leader said: “When we warn the enemy, indeed every letter and every word have a credit and a field action. We know what pains and what pressures the enemy, and our equations have turned to be very important in which the enemy takes very well into consideration.

Sinwar further uncovered that the Palestinian resistance was trying to kidnap ‘Israeli’ soldiers ahead of Operation al-Quds Sword to force the occupation regime to a swap deal, noting that the resistance dealt the enemy the heaviest blow by striking Tel Aviv and belittling the ‘Israeli’ prestige, and cemented the new equation that “bombing Tel Aviv is a piece of cake.”

The senior Palestinian resistance figure also admitted that a joint operations chamber with the entire axis of resistance was always active all over the days of the war.

Additionally, the joint security chamber highly contributed to important intelligence during the course of the battle, Sinwar made clear.

In response to a question about the Qassam Brigades’ readiness amid the latest ‘Israeli’ provocations, the Hamas official stressed that “The power that we’ve built and are still building, the experiences and lessons we’ve learned, bring us every day a step closer to the long-awaited day of liberating Palestine and returning to it.

Sinwar then addressed all the free people of the world by saying: “The Aqsa Mosque is waiting for you, so do wait for the signal.”

زياد النخالة: «سيف القدس» أكّدت إمكانية تحقيق الانتصار على العدو

 الإثنين 23 أيار 2022

وليد شرارة

على المقاومة أن تحافظ دائماً على حالة الاشتباك

 العرب والمسلمون، شعوباً وأفراداً، مطالَبون بدعم المقاومة

بعد مضيّ سنة على معركة «سيف القدس»، يحتدم الصراع بين مشروع التطهير العرقي الصهيوني ومقاومة الشعب الفلسطيني الباسلة. فالحكومة الإسرائيلية صادقت، منذ أيّام، على مشروع لبناء أربعة آلاف وحدة استيطانية جديدة، وأطلقت العنان للإرهاب الكولونيالي الذي يمارسه جنودها ومستوطنوها بحقّ أبناء الشعب الفلسطيني، لتهجيرهم من منازلهم أو لقتلهم، كما كثّفت من مساعيها الهادفة إلى الاستيلاء الكامل على المسجد الأقصى. في المقابل، يتصدّى الفلسطينيون ــــ بمبادرات فردية وجماعية ــــ لهذه السياسة، عبر استخدام أساليب النضال المختلفة، الشعبية والمسلّحة. زياد النخالة، الأمين العام لـ«حركة الجهاد الإسلامي»، مقتنعٌ بأن «سيف القدس» كانت إنجازاً كبيراً، لكنها ليست انتصاراً كاملاً، حيث لم تفرِض على العدو التراجع الكامل عن مخطّطاته. وهو رأى، في مقابلة مع «الأخبار»، أن أيّ ميل إلى«المساكنة» مع الاحتلال، تحت أي مبرّرات، لن يخدم سوى هذه المخطّطات، وأكّد أن الخيار الصحيح هو البناء والمراكمة على الإنجاز الكبير الذي حقّقه الشعب الفلسطيني وقواه الحيّة، بفضل الكفاح والتضحيات، لتصعيد المقاومة وإلحاق هزيمة حاسمة بالعدوّ

عندما يصبح هناك «مساكنة» مع العدو، تفقد المقاومة روحها

واليوم، ما هي مسؤوليّتنا كفصائل مقاوِمة؟ تعزيز روحية المقاتل واستعداداته، وعدم إخلاء الميدان أبداً. وإذا كنت أنا مواطناً عربياً أنظر إلى قطاع غزة، سأسأل: ما هي المشكلة في غزة؟ عمّال يذهبون إلى العمل في الأراضي المحتلّة، المعابر مفتوحة، الناس يذهبون للعلاج في الكيان، وهناك خطّ تجاري مع مصر… وهذا كله، في النهاية، محاولة لرشوة الفلسطينيين المحاصَرين، لإبعادهم عن المقاومة. المطلوب من المقاومة أن تحافظ على حالة اشتباك دائم مع العدو، لا أقول حرباً مفتوحة بالضرورة، إنّما ليس مقبولاً أن يطمئنّ العدو إلى قطاع غزة، وأن يصبح الفلسطيني في القطاع غير مشتبك، والفلسطيني في الضفة مشتبكاً… يجب أن تبقى غزة، في حسابات الجانب الإسرائيلي، حالة تهديد دائم، وأن يكون لدينا مقاربة تضعها في هذه الحالة، إلى جانب الضفة الغربية والقدس.

بعد انتهاء المعركة، شهدنا مساعيَ لإعادة إعمار ما دمّرته الحرب، وعروضاً لـ«تحويل غزّة إلى سنغافورة». ما هي خلفيات هذه «اليقظة» المفاجئة وأهدافها؟
المصريّون يبنون، حالياً، تجمّعات سكنية في قطاع غزة (مصر 1 و2 و3). ولكن، خلال المفاوضات التي جرت معهم بعد «سيف القدس»، قالوا: لا يمكن أن نبني لكم، فتذهبون أنتم إلى الحرب ويُدمَّر ما بنيناه. وهذا نوع من التقييد والتكبيل الذي يَخدم العدو. وغداً أيضاً، يمكن أن تأتي دول أخرى غنيّة تجعل من غزة سنغافورة جديدة، لتأمين الهدوء للعدو. المبدأ بالنسبة إلينا، هو عدم القبول بالمساكنة والتعايش مع العدو الإسرائيلي. وعلى هذا، يُدار الصراع. يمكن أن لا يُرضي هذا الكلام بعض الجهات والأطراف، ويمكن أن لا يُرضي بعض المواطنين الفلسطينيين أيضاً، لكن هذا هو دوري، وهذه هي هويّة «حركة الجهاد الإسلامي»، ويُفترض أن تكون هذه هي هوية كل فصائل المقاومة. أمّا الصراع فسيبقى مفتوحاً، ولا تحدّده أيّ جهات أو تنظيمات سياسية، طالما أن الاحتلال قائم. اليوم، ها هم يقاتلوننا على المسجد الأقصى، ويريدون – بالحدّ الأدنى – أن يقسّموه. لذلك، علينا أن نكون جاهزين ومستعدّين دائماً للمواجهة.


 كيف يمكن الاستفادة من التضامن العربي والإسلامي والعالمي الواسع مع القضية الفلسطينية الذي تجلّى خلال المعركة؟
ما شاهدناه من حالة تضامن مع المقاومة خلال معركة «سيف القدس»، كان هائلاً. ولو استمرّت هذه المعركة، لكنّا رأينا أكثر. أنا أريد أن أقنع المواطن العربي أنّنا في حالة اشتباك دائم مع العدو. نحن شعب يقبع تحت الاحتلال والاضطهاد، وأيّ شعب مُحتلّ، عليه واجب المقاومة والقتال. وأنا أطالب العرب بأن لا يقولوا إن المقاومة انتصرت و«خلّصنا»، بل نحن فتحنا آفاقاً جديدة، ونحتاج إلى دعم المواطن العربي، بعيداً من الأنظمة التي تحاول ترويض التنظيمات عبر أموالها. العرب والمسلمون، شعوباً وأفراداً، مطالَبون بدعم المقاومة.

يجب أن تبقى غزة، في حسابات الجانب الإسرائيلي، حالة تهديد دائم


 ألا تعتقدون بأولوية تصعيد المقاومة ضدّ الاحتلال في الضفة الغربية باعتبارها ساحة المواجهة الرئيسة مع مشروع الاستيطان والتطهير العرقي؟
في الضفة الغربية، ذهبت السلطة نحو اتفاقات سلام مع العدو. لكنّ إسرائيل لم تلتزم بها، إلى درجة أن عدد المستوطنين في الضفة بات يبلغ 800 ألف. مَن يُخرِج هؤلاء؟ كلّما ذهبت إلى المساكنة مع العدو، سيفرض عليك أمراً واقعاً، حتى تستسلم له في النهاية، أو تذهب إلى المواجهة التي ستكون قد أصبحت أكثر صعوبة وتعقيداً. مثلاً، قبل «اتفاق أوسلو» كان عدد المستوطنين يبلغ عشرات الآلاف في الضفة. وبعده، صار لدينا دولة أخرى، غير إسرائيل، هي دولة المستوطنين.
الآن، بعد سنوات طويلة، بدأ يتسرّب إلى عقل السلطة أن هذا التنسيق وهذا الاتفاق مع العدو صارا بلا قيمة. وهم يقولون ذلك. وأنا أرى أنه، في الإجمال، لا يوجد فلسطيني يقبل بإسرائيل. كل الفلسطينيين ضدّها. لكنّ هناك فلسطينيين «بيتشاطروا» على فلسطينيين آخرين، ويقولون إن لديهم مشروعاً سياسياً و«تكتيكاً» يحقّق إنجازاً ما، فيذهبون في هذا الاتجاه… لكنّ التجربة أثبتت أن الإسرائيلي لا يمتلك مشروعاً مقابلاً. ما هو المشروع الإسرائيلي المقابل؟ هذا سؤال يجب أن يجيب عليه كل فلسطيني. ما هي إسرائيل؟ نحتاج إلى إعادة تعريف المشروع الصهيوني.
بعضنا ذهب، عبر «التكتيك»، إلى اتفاقات مع العدو الذي يملك دعماً سياسياً وعسكرياً واقتصادياً دولياً هائلاً. أنت دخلت في معركة سياسية ليست بحجمك ولا بقدرتك. ما نستطيع فعله، هو أن نخلق مشاكل لإسرائيل، وعندها سيأتي هو ليحلّ المشكلة، مشكلة المستوطن، وليست مشكلتنا. هذا هو دورنا. العدو لم يفاوض أبا عمار (الرئيس ياسر عرفات) لأنه كان مرتاحاً، بل لأن الشعب الفلسطيني كان يدفع دماً في الانتفاضة. لكن، تبيّن أن مشروع التفاهم أدّى إلى خسارة الفلسطينيين تماماً. الإنجاز هو أن تفرض على العدو أن يدفع ثمن التفاهم، مهما كان، حتى ولو بحدود عام 1967، التي، بالمناسبة، لا يقبل بها الإسرائيلي، بينما يبادر بعضنا إلى القبول بهذه الحدود. وهذا يعني تنازلاً من دون أن يكون لدى الطرف المقابل المحتلّ، أيّ عرض.

في القتال ترتسم الجغرافيا، وليس من خلال المفاوضات. إذا قاتلنا وفرضنا وقائع على الأرض، وشعر الإسرائيلي بأنه مُهدَّد، سينسحب كما حصل في غزة، حيث لم يستطع حماية 15 ألف مستوطن كانوا فيها. نحن، اليوم، قادرون على أن نضع الاستيطان في الضفة الغربية تحت التهديد، وفي هذه الحالة فقط، يمكن أن نُحقق تغييرات، لأن الإسرائيلي يعتقد أنه يشتري الفلسطينيين ببعض التسهيلات الاقتصادية، وهذا مشروع الحكومة الحالية، والتي تعتقد أنه الحلّ لمشكلة غزة.

نرفض إجراء الانتخابات في هذه الظروف وفي ظلّ الاحتلال


إذا قاتلنا نحقّق الإنجاز، أمّا إذا قبلنا بحالة المساكنة، فالإسرائيلي مرتاح وليس لديه مشكلة، ومستعدّ لتقديم المزيد من التسهيلات الاقتصادية، وحتى الأمنية أيضاً، كونه المستفيد. القتال مجال مفتوح: يمكن أن يكون بالحجر والسكين والبندقية والصاروخ. ما يهمّ هو أن يتواصل القتال. يجب أن لا يشعر الإسرائيلي بأنه قادر على إسكات أيّ طرف فلسطيني عبر التفاهم. أنا لا أشكّك في أيّ فصيل فلسطيني مقاوم، لكن يمكن القول إن هذا «اجتهاد غير صائب». الصائب هو أن لا أدع العدو يستقرّ، وأجعله دائماً مضطراً للبحث عن حلّ لمشكلاته التي أخلقها أنا له. والتجربة في جنوب لبنان شاهدة، حيث لم تكن خسائر العدو بالغة وكبيرة، لكن العدو لم يحتمل قتيلاً أو اثنين في الشهر، أي أن العبرة هي في استمرار الاشتباك. وهذا لا يعني أن نذهب إلى «سيف القدس» جديدة كل يوم.

يجب أن تكون القناعة أن إسرائيل طرف لا يمكن التفاوض ولا التفاهم معه. وعلى هذا الأساس، تُبنى كلّ برامجنا. وهو ما يدفعنا إلى خلْق وقائع جديدة تنطلق من المقاومة، ويجعل إيهود باراك (رئيس الحكومة الإسرائيلية الأسبق)، مثلاً، يشكّك في كل المشروع الصهيوني بعد مقتل نحو 20 مستوطناً خلال مدّة قصيرة. المستوطنون باتوا يشعرون بأنهم تحت تهديد يومي. وهم يشعرون أكثر بأنهم تحت تهديد أفراد، والدولة التي تكون تحت تهديد فرد، ليست دولة. هذا ببساطة مشروع اقتصادي، إن استطعنا هزّه سينهار. ويمكن أن يكون لهم متّسع في أيّ مكان في العالم، لكن ليس في فلسطين.

ما هو موقف «حركة الجهاد الإسلامي» من أطروحة «أولويّة» تحقيق الوحدة الوطنية كشرط لتفعيل المقاومة؟
البعض يرفع شعار «الوحدة الوطنية»، ليكون إطاراً للتفاهم مع العدو! الميدان هو ما يحقّق الوحدة الوطنية الفلسطينية. المقاتلون في الميدان يرسمون مساراً للوحدة الوطنية، وما يجري في الضفة الغربية، اليوم، وخاصّة في جنين ونابلس وطولكرم وغيرها، حيث يقاتل أبناء «سرايا القدس» و«كتائب القسّام» و«كتائب شهداء الأقصى» وغيرهم، جنباً إلى جنب. حتى إنك لا تستطيع التمييز بينهم كثيراً، لأنهم يسيرون على خطّ واحد، وهنا تُصنع الوحدة. أما في السياسة، فيصبح التنافس على الحصّة الكبرى في المؤسّسات والدوائر والسفارات وغير ذلك. ومن هنا، نرفض إجراء الانتخابات في هذه الظروف وفي ظلّ الاحتلال، لأن المطلب من ورائها هو النفوذ السياسي والحكم، وهذا ما لا يجب أن يكون هدفاًَ.

الأمين العام لـ«حركة الجهاد الإسلامي»

Palestinian leaders, factions commemorate Seif Al-Quds

May 22, 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

In commemoration of Seif Al-Quds Battle, Palestinian Resistance leaders and factions hail the resilience of the Palestinian people and underscore the role of the resistance against the Israeli enemy.

Haniyeh: Seif Al-Quds amplified our strategy, Al-Aqsa will be protected

The battle of Seif Al-Quds constituted an important turning point in the course of the struggle with the occupation and opened the door to a different battle, Hamas political bureau chief Ismail Haniyeh said Sunday.

During the Great National Conference on the first anniversary of the battle of Seif Al-Quds, Haniyeh added that “the results of the Battle of Seif Al-Quds were not limited to Palestine’s geography, rather they were strategic and resounded throughout the world.”

“The first result of the Battle of Seif al-Quds was that the Resistance launching strikes from Gaza hit the Zionist security doctrine hard,” he added, noting that Gaza “drew the sword of Al-Quds and plunged it at the head of the occupier and struck deep in its conscience.” 

Read more: Seif Al-Quds taught “Israel” a hard lesson on deterrence equations

Haniyeh added that every inch of the occupied Palestinian land was a target for the resistance with all its capabilities, noting that “the battle of Seif Al-Quds united the land, the people, and the cause, and removed geographical barriers within historic Palestine.” 

He also stressed that the battle introduced a shift in the balance of power that served the Palestinian people, especially those in the territories occupied in 1948.

He pointed out that the support of the peoples of the Ummah and the world has led to a profound impact that would have an aftermath in the confrontations that the Palestinian people will wage against the Israeli occupation.

Read more: Dear Western media, Palestinians took over your coverage

Regarding the continued threats of the occupation and settlers storming Al-Aqsa Mosque, Haniyeh stressed that the Resistance in Palestine is following up on these events, warning against any attacks on the holy site.

Read more: Resistance to occupation: The Flag March shall not pass

Nakhalah: The resistance will not allow Judaization attempts of Al-Aqsa

On his part, Palestinian Islamic Jihad Secretary-General Ziyad Al-Nakhalah affirmed that Al-Quds was the eternal capital of Palestine, stressing that “we will not allow Judaization attempts on Al-Aqsa” even if they had to relentlessly fight.

During the national conference held by Hamas on the first anniversary of Seif Al-Quds Battle, Al-Nakhalah pointed out that the “[judaization] attack targeting Al-Quds and its blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque is still at its peak,” stressing that “the Resistance now holds more responsibility to defend Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

Al-Nakhalah stated that “the resilient Palestinian people are united, and the days of the month of Ramadan and the daily confrontations in the vicinity of Al-Aqsa Mosque bear witness to this.”

According to the official, “Protecting unity has become a duty and not an option in the course of protecting and safeguarding the resistance, especially in light of the hostile alliances that arise every day and serve the enemy’s interests.”

In this context, he referred to the funeral of the martyred journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, describing the day all Palestinians, Muslims, and Christians stood in solidarity in the face of Zionist brutality as a  “momentous day”.

The PIJ leader further underlined that “adhering to the stances of the resistance is the only guarantee not to fall prey to the attempts of those trying to tame it for the benefit of the enemy and to accept the fait accompli.”

Al-Nakhalah ended his speech by saying, “The enemy leaders realized more than others that the founders of the Zionist project were ignorant, and those who gave them our country as a ‘homeland’ were even more ignorant.” 

Palestinian Resistance factions: We will now allow breaking the rules of engagement

In a military statement on the occasion, the Joint Operation Room of the Palestinian Resistance factions recalled the Resistance’s great achievement in Seif Al-Quds Battle, which was fought a year ago with full force and vigor.

The statement proudly mentioned that Seif Al-Quds echoed from Gaza to Al-Quds, reaching the Palestinian diaspora and Palestinian supporters around the world, who voiced their solidarity with Palestine against the occupation. Cohesion and patriotism forced the occupation to cease fire, confirming the Resistance’s vitality and steadfastness. 

The Palestinian Resistance marked a milestone during Seif Al-Quds battle, the statement added, confirming that the occupation is now facing an existential threat founded by the steadfast Resistance. The factions also stressed that the resistance fighters have left marks on the occupation that brings the glad tidings of nearing the liberation of Palestine. 

The Palestinian resistance factions, in their joint statement, affirmed their and the Palestinian blood’s unity wherever it is found, whether in Gaza, the West Bank, Al-Quds, and the Palestinian diaspora, until the end of the Palestinian Nakba.

Regarding the “Flag March” organized by settlers, which is scheduled to take place next week, the factions affirmed that “the Palestinian people will absolutely not allow the breaking of the rules of engagement or the return to the square of provocations in which we have spoken with all force.”

Furthermore, the statement affirmed that the enemy’s practices and violations in all the occupied cities, as well as the calls to storm Al-Aqsa Mosque, were reasons that motivate the resistance to maintain steadfastness and resilience. 

Lastly, the resistance stressed that the factions were preparing at all levels for the battle that would liberate occupied Palestine and safeguard Palestine’s sanctity.

The statement was concluded with a pledge to the Palestinian people that the resistance would remain steadfast until victory and liberation. 

Stay Updated: Seif Al-Quds: New deterrence equation

Resistance Ready to Fight ‘Israel’ In Gaza, All Occupied Lands – Al-Quds Brigades

May 19, 2022

By Staff, Agencies

Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad resistance movement, affirmed readiness to battle the Zionist occupation regime in the Gaza Strip, Jenin and across all the occupied cities, stressing that they will continue to resist until freeing Palestine.

In a statement marking the anniversary of their victory in the ‘Israeli’ regime’s last war on the Gaza Strip, Operation al-Quds Sword, the al-Quds Brigades said that a year after the 11-day war, the resistance has become stronger and more equipped and is ready to fend off any invasion or “idiocy of the ‘Israeli’ enemy.”

Gaza-based resistance forces launched Operation al-Quds Sword last May in defense of Palestinians in al-Quds against the Zionist occupation regime’s atrocities and desecration of the al-Aqsa Mosque.

During that operation, Palestinian resistance groups overwhelmed the occupation entity by firing over 4,000 rockets and missiles into the occupied territories. The Tel Aviv regime, shocked by the unprecedented barrage of rockets from Gaza, announced a unilateral ceasefire on May 21, which Palestinian resistance movements accepted with Egyptian mediation.

The statement further read that al-Quds Brigades are prepared for any sacrifice and fight against the Zionist enemy in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank city of Jenin and all occupied cities.

 “The Zionist enemy was utterly humiliated during Operation al-Quds Sword and concealed many facts about its defeats and casualties,” the statement said, adding, “Losses and casualties inflicted upon the Zionist regime over the course of the operation exceeded the numbers announced in ‘Israeli’ televisions and media.”

“Jihad, resistance and readiness are the only options for Palestinians to free all occupied lands,” the statement underlined.

In an earlier statement issued by the Palestinian resistance factions on May 10, the operation was deemed as a “turning point” in the resistance movements’ confrontation against the ‘Israeli’ occupier.

The operation, the groups said, changed the “rules of engagement” in such a way that now any aggression by the regime would be returned in kind.

Seif Al-Quds: The battle which ushered in a new era of Palestinian armed struggle

12 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Robert Inlakesh 

The battle fought between the unified Palestinian resistance factions and “Israel” completely changed the trajectory of the region’s conflict with the Zionist regime.

Seif Al-Quds: The Battle Which Ushered In A New Era Of Palestinian Armed Struggle

Although for many, the Seif al-Quds (Sword of Jerusalem) battle, last May, represented significant suffering and loss of Palestinian life, the war fought between the unified Palestinian resistance factions and “Israel”, completely changed the trajectory of the region’s conflict with the Zionist regime.

Lasting between May 10 and May 21, dubbed the “11-day war”, Palestinian armed factions in the Gaza Strip combined their strength with that of the entire Palestinian population inside occupied territories. After consistent Israeli incursions into al-Aqsa mosque last Ramadan, the spokesperson for the al-Qassam brigades [armed wing of Hamas], Abu Ubaydah, gave Israeli occupation forces a 6 PM deadline to withdraw from Al-Aqsa Mosque and stop a far-Right settler march. On the deadline, a barrage of rockets was fired from Gaza, into Israeli settlements surrounding Jerusalem. It was then that “Israel” officially announced it was going to war with Gaza.

Around 270 Palestinians were killed across the occupied territories by Israeli occupation forces and settlers, however, the story of human suffering during the war was not the only significant element. Unlike had been the case in 2014, 2008-9, and even in 2012, all years when the Israeli occupation forces launched military operations against the Gaza Strip, no significant win could be taken from the side of the Palestinian resistance. With the exception of the 2012 war, the other battles between Gaza’s armed groups and “Israel” had resulted in the weakening of the position of the Palestinian armed struggle. During Seif Al-Quds, things were quite the opposite, for the first time, it was a real strategic victory on the part of a unified front of armed factions, making up what has become known as the ‘Joint Room’ of resistance factions.

“Israel” was forced into political and military disarray, as the victory of Seif Al-Quds only further led to the downfall of former Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, ushering in a new Israeli ruling coalition. “Israel”’s military strategy of attempting to draw the resistance forces into the attack tunnel systems, in order to bombard them and kill hundreds, failed tremendously and completely took the Israeli military by surprise. The Gazan forces had somehow figured out, most likely through intelligence gathering methods, what “Israel” had been planning – a fake invasion announcement – preemptively preparing themselves for such an Israeli attack. Hamas even dictated to the Israelis in “Tel Aviv” when they could come out of their bomb shelters, telling them that they would stop their rocket attacks for 2 hours on one given night. The sight of Israelis listening to the guidelines set to them by Hamas and the other armed factions, made “Israel’s” air defense systems and military strategy seem weak, proving the Zionist forces useless at defending their own population.

Furthermore, the tactics used by the armed groups, such as; slowly revealing new weapons technology, striking everywhere inside the 1948 territories, putting Israeli airports on temporary lockdown and controlling the course of the battle, all showed the entire region the weaknesses of “Tel Aviv”. If little besieged Gaza could foil “Israel’s” military strategies that they had worked on for years, not lose their military capabilities, force “Israel” to accept a non-conditional ceasefire, imagine what a force like Lebanese Hezbollah, or the Syrian Arab Army, would do to them? This was the question in the minds of world leaders at the time. To conclude the battle of Seif Al-Quds, “Israel” did not fire the final shot by midnight when the ceasefire kicked in, it was Hamas that had the last say. 

Seif al-Quds proved for the Palestinians, as well as regional allies of the camp of resistance to “Israel”, that the armed struggle was the only way forward. The Palestinian Authority (PA), based in Ramallah, chooses the path of “security coordination” and refuses to resist “Israel” with violence and has failed to achieve a so-called “two-State solution”. The PA, of President Mahmoud Abbas, has little legitimacy left in the eyes of Palestinians and has no negotiating chips to bring to the table of any talks with the Israeli side, on top of this, no Israeli ruling coalition will have anything to do with the PA and talks of “two-States”. Now, the answer, following the era of Oslo, which really died with the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, is again the armed struggle and this is clearly what we see, as the rising belief, all throughout occupied Palestine.

A regional coalition, to fight for al-Aqsa Mosque, is now developing in its coordination and capabilities, included in which will be; Hezbollah, Ansarallah, groups from within the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) and the Palestinian armed factions. The head of the Hamas movement in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, has vowed that the war for Jerusalem will begin after Ramadan and that the armed factions in Gaza will be on high alert to thwart Israeli plots against the Palestinian people and Jerusalem’s Holy Sites. 

The battle of May 2021 represents the opening of a new chapter in the conflict with “Israel”, forcing the entire region and beyond to pay attention. Having said this, the questions to now be answered are; How will a regional coalition launch a successful military campaign against “Israel”? When will the Israeli ruling coalition collapse and how will the resistance deal with this? When will the PA change hands from its current rulers or collapse? And, when will the international community begin to start approaching Hamas as a representative of the Palestinian movement and people? The answers to these questions will be determining factors to how the Palestinian cause will once again emerge as a top priority on the regional and international stage. 

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

69% of Israeli settlers worried about the fate of the occupation

10 May 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen net 

An opinion poll published by the Israeli newspaper “Israel Hayom” exposes the settlers’ declining confidence in the Israeli occupation.

75% of the ’48-Palestinians believe Jews have no right to land in occupied Palestine.

In occupied Palestine, 69% of the Jews are worried about the destiny of the so-called “state”, and 67% say that action with weapons and the enforcement of penalties should be used to “avoid confrontations between Jews and Arabs.” This is the result of a poll conducted against the backdrop of the operations taking place in “Israel” and the anniversary of Seif Al-Quds Battle. 

According to the findings, just 25% of ’48-Palestinians feel that the “Jewish people have a claim to sovereignty in the [so-called] Land of Israel,” while the vast majority – around 75% – believe that the Jewish people do not have such a right.

According to the study, the majority of the public, around 66% of Israeli settlers, distrust the police; among ’48-Palestinians, the figure is 73%.

’48-Palestinians also report a higher sense of uneasiness – 71%, compared to 44% of Israeli Jews.

Public trust is becoming a growing concern for “Israel”. The decline in the trust of the public, from the very army of the occupation to the bottom of society, is expressed in numbers, according to a recent Israeli study by the “Israel Democracy Institute.” 

The Institute conducts annual consensus in the Israeli society, and the latest marks the nineteenth edition, which was revealed on January 6. There has been a significant decrease in the trust in the Israeli army, receding to 78% – the lowest number since the July 2006 war on Lebanon. 

The study is named the “Israeli Democracy Index for 2021” and it includes an update to the Institute’s previous poll in June 2021. 

Beyond Seif Al-Quds: “Israel’s” Upcoming War

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360°

Karim Sharara

If a wider war breaks out, “Israel’s” strategy will be an offensive one that will feature the use of ground forces.

The battle of Seif Al-Quds introduced a shift in the Resistance’s operations and the future of the Axis of Resistance. What changed during the battle, and how does “Israel” plan on tackling the next war?

Much has been said in the aftermath of the Battle of Seif Al-Quds, what the Israelis termed “Guardian of the Walls” (the name did not age well). Seif Al-Quds, or Al-Quds Sword, was no less than a game-changer in terms of developments in the region, which introduced another chink into Israeli armor, an introduction to a paradigm shift in regional and international relations.

As the events of Sheikh Jarrah were unfolding, and anger mounting against “Israel’s” inhumane, illegal, and shameless colonial practices, so were Israeli attacks against the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and with them, popular resistance and confrontations against Israeli occupation forces picked up. For the first time, with the beginning of the Resistance’s ultimatum for Israeli forces to withdraw from Sheikh Jarrah and the Al-Aqsa Mosque’s courtyard, ending with the Resistance launching rockets after the occupation failed to comply and leave the occupied territories, there was a complete unity between the Resistance and the people.

While Palestine’s Resistance factions operated in complete unison, so did the people of Palestine take to the streets and riot against their oppression by the IOF.

The significance of these happenings wasn’t just limited to Palestinian unity, which was translated into a renewed hope for liberation. For the first time, we also saw statements by Resistance leaders signaling unison among regional Resistance factions as well.

In simple terms, a prolonged war on Gaza and continued violation of the Al-Aqsa Mosque may end with “Israel” having to contend with more than one front.

This wasn’t a simple development that Israeli decision-makers had to contend with, because the very pillars to which “Israel” owns its continuity as a political entity were at stake: Migration, settlement, and security. In order to prepare for the upcoming, inevitable battle, Israeli pundits and decision-makers had to formulate strategies in order to remedy the weaknesses revealed by the battle of Seif Al-Quds.

The Narrative

The battle over narratives is a very important one in fostering support or criticism for a certain event. In this instance, pro-Palestinian youth around the world made use of their social media presence to raise awareness regarding “Israel’s” oppression of the Palestinian people and their forced displacement of the people of Sheikh Jarrah.

Despite the very obvious attempts by Western social media to limit pro-Palestinian accounts from spreading their narrative, with Instagram and Facebook reducing the reach of pro-Palestinian content, the consensus around Israeli brutality during the battle, and “Israel’s” targeting of foreign media reporting on the battle shifted the balance toward Palestine.

This success was also in part due to the fact that people around the world had begun using TikTok, a Chinese platform that the West had no control over, and thus could not use to shape an anti-Resistance consensus. Thus, video and photographic content of the IOF’s targeting of civilians and civilian infrastructure could no longer be ignored and shifted world popular opinion against the Israeli war machine.

As a result of this shift in world public opinion, recommendations were made to Israeli decision-makers to further enhance “Israel’s” presence on social media and organize it as a “force multiplier”.

Security strategy

One of “Israel’s” main concerns is the perpetuation of security, and for Israelis living on the occupied territories to sense this security. Without said security, there would be no migration toward the occupied territories, “Israel” could neither build settlements on occupied territories and expand its colonial presence, nor could it afford to maintain its existence.

One of the main pillars of Israeli strength is for it to give off the impression of it being an impregnable fortress, either by way of building walls, or surrounding itself with the figurative Iron dome, so that any targeting is rendered futile, thereby allowing it to perpetuate its existence by sheer awe factor.

The Resistance’s main takeaway from the Seif Al-Quds Battle was that the myth of the Iron Dome, and the sense of security felt by Israeli settlers, especially those living in the Gaza envelope, were both dissipated. The Resistance’s use of rocket volleys in order to land actual hits on Israeli settlements and cities located deep in the occupied heartland meant that settlers had to contend with something new: rockets landing near them, and the possibility of dying or facing gravy injury at any moment; the Iron Dome could no longer protect them, and in their eyes, their government and military had failed them.

A second threat that Israeli decision-makers had to contend with was two-fold:

–          Prolonging the battle amid depleting Iron Dome reserves and an unwillingness to launch a ground incursion because of the risk of suffering heavy losses.

–          The possibility of developments ensuing on the northern front with Lebanon and Hezbollah joining the battle.

Multiple fronts

Faced with the prospect of “Israel” having to contend with multiple fronts, the IOF has decided to launch its largest-ever military drills, which were supposed to take place last May, but were delayed on account of the battle of Seif Al-Quds.

Put simply, even according to Israeli military minds, the occupation cannot withstand a multiple front approach and has had a hard enough time dealing with either the Lebanese or the Gaza front alone. One main problem faced by Israeli decision-makers is that the occupation cannot sustain a battle for an extended amount of time, not to mention the prospect of having to contend with multiple fronts.

If a wider war breaks out, “Israel’s” strategy will be an offensive one that will feature the use of ground forces, making high casualty rates in the IOF inevitable. In the words of the IOF’s Chief of General Staff, Aviv Kochavi, the strategy “Tel Aviv” will employ will be one of “widely expose, widely strike, and widely destroy.” This means Israeli occupation forces will be seeking high-intensity, simultaneous attacks on multiple fronts in order to inflict maximum civilian losses using air superiority so as to establish deterrence.

Non-military strategy

Other than “Israel’s” military strategy, its immediate concern is the Resistance factions in Gaza, who can mobilize the occupied territories. As such, one of its aims is to use the tools and influence at its disposal in order to weaken Resistance factions operating in Gaza by using a three-pronged approach:

1-     Halting the transfer of funds from Qatar to Gaza: Since it cannot use any of its influence against Iran, “Israel” is seeking to use its influence with Qatar in order to restrain the Gaza front, limit Hamas’ influence outside of Gaza, and stop using its media arm to fan the flames.

2-  Enlisting the help of Egypt to place pressure against Resistance factions by obstructing reconstruction in Gaza and closing crossings into the Sinai Peninsula.

3-     Preventing people from Gaza from being allowed to work in other parts of the occupied territories.

Aside from Gaza, its other main concern is the Lebanese Resistance. One strategy that Israeli pundits have been adopting over the past few months rests in applying internal pressure on the Resistance in order to weaken its popular foothold, or as one Israeli Reserve Forces Major put it: the “solution” to Hezbollah’s possession of precision missiles no longer lies in military threats, but “in the ability of the international community and ‘Israel’ to take advantage of the unprecedented internal crisis in Lebanon in order to succeed in fatally damaging the organization’s status (or force it to take over Lebanon and pay a very high price).”

As things are headed, with the promise of a unified answer to the violation of Palestine and Al-Aqsa by the leaders of the Axis of Resistance, there is a probability that the upcoming war will not be only limited to the Palestinian theater. An end to the illusion of Israeli and settler security is one that can prompt a reverse migration from Palestine, and an end to the misery suffered by its people for the past seven decades.

There is an old adage that says, the land’s owner is the one who defends it. Perhaps the coming battle will reveal to the world who the land’s true owners are: those rooted in it and are prepared to give their lives defending it, however possible.

Iron Dome; “Israel’s” crushed pride

May 10, 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

By Lea Akil 

The Iron Dome, which “Israel” repeatedly flaunted has a 90% success rate, exhibited a series of failures against resistance missiles, especially during the Seif al-Quds battle.

Iron Dome is a mobile air defense missile system designed to intercept short-range missiles and artillery shells.

A year after Seif al-Quds, the Palestinian resistance factions’ rockets played an unforgettable role and are crucial to mention when discussing the lessons from the eleven-day battle of Seif al-Quds. The resistance exhibited an array of tactics and methods, which penetrated the Iron Dome, crushing the “pride” of “Israel.” 

The Israeli occupation has repeatedly flaunted its weaponry, which has exhibited nothing but failures for the entity; especially the Iron Dome.

This month last year, the Seif al-Quds battle broke out between the Israeli occupation and the Palestinian Resistance. Eleven days later, the Israeli occupation cabinet settled on a truce in Gaza at 2 a.m. on May 21, 2021, after a three-hour discussion.

Crushed pride in Seif al-Quds

Despite the Iron Dome’s reported success rate of 90%, the Palestinian Resistance was able to circumvent the extremely advanced technology by employing techniques that misled the system, such as overwhelming it with a huge quantity of missiles.

“We utilized the tactic of firing the Sijeel missiles at Askalan, which have a high destructive power, and succeeded in overcoming the Iron Dome,” said al-Qassam Brigades. 

What is the Iron Dome?

The Iron Dome is a mobile air defense missile system designed to intercept short-range missiles and artillery shells by Rafael, a company for advanced defense systems. 

The necessity for an air defense system to shield “Israel” against short-range missiles arose following the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in July 2006, when Hezbollah launched over 4,000 primarily short-range 122 MLM Grad rockets, most of which landed in northern occupied Palestine.

The Palestinian Resistance factions’ use of various range missiles to retaliate against the Israeli occupation’s aggression against civilians intensified the urgency.

However, Israeli General Yossi Langotsky, commander of the 81st Technological Unit, believed that the Iron Dome had proven unsuccessful in countering rockets launched by the Palestinian Resistance.

Palestinian Resistance faces Iron Dome 

The Palestinian Resistance adopted a method, which is to overwhelm the mobile air defense missile system with a large number of missiles in record time, which was also reported by Israeli media, along with the firing of 350 rockets in 20 minutes.

Another method adopted by the Palestinian resistance to deceive the dome’s radar was to launch hundreds of rocket-propelled grenades towards the destined targets “from different angles,” according to Alex Fishman, a military affairs analyst in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper.

Israeli military setbacks

During the battle last year, activists on social media documented a defect that affected the Iron Dome, as “its missiles started to fall directly on the settlers’ homes”, marking another humiliating failure for the missile system. 

More recently, the Iron Dome defense military system was activated during a recent firing of Palestinian resistance rockets into occupied regions, but it had two failures.

The first malfunction was exhibited when two independent Iron Dome systems were engaged at the same time, intercepting each other instead of Palestinian projectiles. The second was when the defense system began firing randomly.

Read next: “Israel”, A Tunnel into Oblivion

On another recent occasion, last month, the Iron Dome did not properly function, Israeli media reported following the sound of sirens blaring in the Israeli settlement of Sderot.

Rockets struck Sderot without being intercepted, Israeli media added, noting that the projectiles were launched from Gaza, as “Israel’s pride” failed to detect them.

In response to the failure, US President Joe Biden “affirmed his unwavering support for “Israel” and its defense needs, and welcomed the historic $1 billion allocations to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome system.” 

In February, the Israeli occupation failed to bring down Hassan UAV, which flew 70 kilometers inside occupied Palestine in 40 minutes, according to the Israeli daily Calcalist on Saturday.

“F-16 fighters, Apache helicopters, and the interceptor missiles from the Iron Dome all did not succeed in intercepting the Hassan UAV,” the newspaper wrote, adding that “‘Israel’ recorded a security and economic failure at the same time.”

US and anti-‘Israel’ sentiments 

US President Joe Biden held phone talks with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and discussed “joint regional and international security challenges, including threats from Iran and its proxies.”

The White House revealed in a statement that “the President welcomed the visit to Washington this week by the Prime Minister’s National Security Advisor. The President also accepted an invitation to visit Israel in the coming months.” 

Biden, furthermore, “affirmed his unwavering support for ‘Israel’ and its defense needs, and welcomed the historic $1 billion allocations to replenish ‘Israel’s’ Iron Dome system.” 

However, the decades-long triumph of “Israel supporters” in Congress is crumbling.

Ilhan Omar accused “Israel” of abusing human rights, saying “We sold $175 billion in weapons last year—more than anyone in the world—to some of the worst human rights abusers in the world,” on Twitter.

“Here’s an idea: don’t sell arms to anyone who violates human rights,” she added. 

In agreement with Omar, Rep. Rashida Tlaib called “Israel” an “apartheid state” guilty of war crimes.

Read next: US war crime claim ‘staggeringly hypocritical’ – Ilhan Omar

Last year, just months after the fight of Seif al-Quds, the Pentagon tested two Iron Dome systems produced by ‘Israel’s’ Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. in the New Mexico Desert, which was a complete failure.

The same month, Israeli media revealed that the US military has opted not to purchase “Israel’s” Iron Dome missile defense system to prevent air threats.

Resilience vs. the occupation

A year later, Palestinians are still resisting and exhibiting resilience in the face of the Israeli occupation, which has proved several failures in its military and security systems, never failing to exhibit tenacity against the occupation. 

The Palestinian Resistance Factions were able to challenge the Iron Dome, crushing what is referred to as “Israel’s” pride. 

The Iron Dome has exhibited a series of humiliating military setbacks and defeats that demonstrate in terms of strength and capability that the Israeli occupation government falls far short of its claims regarding its “pride” missile system.

The Palestinian resistance not only crushed “Israel’s” pride but also made it clear that nothing will stand in their way when it comes to resistance and resilience. 

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