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How everything went wrong in our favor

This story could’ve ended worse: October 7th 2023, is a dark day that the state of Israel and the entire world will always remember. On the day of Simchat Torah, a Jewish festival which is regarded as the happiest day of the year, Hamas terrorists exploited Israel’s complacency across the board, to embark on a deadly attack on the peaceful residents of southern Israel, innocent party goers at the ‘Nova’ music festival, and sleepy IDF basses. In this devastating day, 1,200 people were murdered, and hundreds were kidnapped and taken to the Gaza Strip.

Navy commando unit liberates ‘Sufa’ base. Photo credit: IDF Spokesman

During the first few days, thousands of cops, soldiers, and Shin Bet fighters sprang into action, leaving their homes with a sense of urgency, and put their lives on the line to defend their country. With supreme heroism and visible miracles, the fighters managed to repel the thousands of terrorists that invaded the state of Israel.

Several days later, a a majority of party leaders in the Israeli Knesset managed to establish a unity government, which declared war on the Hamas, in order to topple their regime, bring peace and quiet to southern Israel, and bring the hostages home.

Knesset member Ganz joined the unity government. Wikipedia
Prime minister Netanyahu and defense minister Galant. Photo by Meir Elipur.

Thousands of civil, grassroots initiatives sprang into action immediately and offered help wherever needed; from providing tactical equipment for the fighters to doing laundry for families of evacuees from the south. National morale soared, and everyone felt a wonderful sense of unity that we could have only dreamed of during the eight months preceding the war, in which division and polarization prevailed around the legal legislation. It seems today as if the whole subject was just a dream.

Gifts for soldiers, use according to section 27A of the Copyright Law

The big plan that never happened

Over time, additional details were discovered that paint a different picture regarding the scope of the planned attack, which thankfully did not come to fruition. In an interview with Israeli radio channel 103FM, Ehud Yaari, Channel 12 commentator on Arab affairs, explained that Sinwar’s original plan was much larger: “They (Hamas) intended to reach Hebron, that is, to join the West Bank,” explained Yaari, “They intended to stay in Israeli territory and fight for many days, perhaps weeks, after The break-in. They intended to reach Ashkelon and Ashdod.”

The invasion into Israel.

“His plan, the one he decided to follow in the end, almost at the last moment, was much bigger than what he carried out. Imagine if the white Toyotas driven by the terrorists would have raced into Hebron, how the West Bank would have been ignited”.

The unfulfilled expectation from the allies of the Hamas

Regarding Hamas’s great expectations from its major allies, Yaari said: “There were many conversations between the members of Hamas and the Revolutionary Guards of Iran and Hezbollah about an action that Hamas would initiate. Hamas did not share his plan with them, neither in the outline of the attack nor in the attack time that was changed more than once, but the Iranians and Hezbollah gave the Hamas the understanding that they will not be left alone, because it was clear to Sinwar that an attack of the magnitude he carried out with the instructions he gave to his ‘Nokhba’ unit terrorist’s , would result in an all-out attack by Israel.”

As great as the expectation, so great is the disappointment: “Therefore the great disappointment that you sometimes hear in public from Hamas, that the ‘axis of resistance’, led by Iran and Hezbollah is waging a vexing but limited war on the border with Lebanon.

“Syria was publicly exempted from participating in the fighting, the Iraqi militias of the Iranians are not complicit in the matter, Iran itself does nothing, which leaves only the Houthis, which have managed to become an international problem. This is not what Sinwar aimed at. He thought ‘I will deliver the big blow and then Israel will attack, leading to fronts on all sides'”.

Evidence of Iran’s renunciation of the Gaza terrorist organization was seen last month (November), as Reuters news agency reported that in a meeting held in Tehran, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei told Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh that Iran would not enter the war on behalf of Hamas because the latter did not warn it in advance about the surprise attack on October 7th.

According to the Iranian and Hamas officials who conveyed the news to Reuters, Khamenei mentioned that Iran would provide political support to Hamas, but would not intervene directly in the war against Israel.

 

Khamenei. Not the support Hamas was expecting. Wikipedia

Similarly, Hezbollah is not expected to unleash their maximum military power, due that fact that “they woke up to war”. This is also implied by Nasrallah’s two speeches that took place since the beginning of the war, in which the Secretary General of the Hezbollah organization disapproved a more significant attack by the terrorist organization against Israel, and claimed that the war is “100% Palestinian”. This moderate stance was heavily criticized throughout the Arab World, as many opposed the moderation he showed in the matter and spread mocking cartoons on social networks.

 

I stand with Israel. from social media
Mocking Nasrallah. from social networks

In the meantime, Khamenei demanded from Hamas prime minister Haniyeh to act to stop the voices of Hamas officials against the ‘axis of resistance’, i.e. Iran and the terrorist organization Hezbollah, to join the fighting “with all their strength”.

But not only within the ‘Axis of Resistance’ are people opposed to helping the Hamas fighters in the Gaza Strip; the Hamas leaders themselves have issiues of their own, as the military wing and the political wing of Hamas, don’t get along. “The relations between Sinwar and Haniyeh and the other members of the political bureau of Hamas who live abroad are very difficult relations,” Yaari explains, “the quarrel between them is big”.

Losing the Gaza residents’ support

Furthermore, even within the territory of the Gaza Strip, Sinwar is losing his military control with the advancement of the IDF’s ground maneuver – and along with it, and in light of the devastating disaster he brought on the Gaza Strip, he is losing the sympathy of the residents towards him.

News 12 commentator on Arab affairs, Ehud Yaari explains that Sinwar’s is losing popularity in the Gaza Strip because “it is clear that he is not in control. He lost Gaza city which had his largest, strongest, most fortified division, and of course the north of the Gaza Strip. Now, he is under heavy military pressure in Khan Yunis. He knows exactly, as I estimate, that if the Khan Yunis brigade collapses as happened to the brigades in the northern strip, the brigades of the Center and Rafah camps will not give a fight.”

Since the worsening of the humanitarian situation of the residents of Gaza during the war, anger arose in the Gazan street towards Sinwar.

During a radio interview, an unapologetic citizen was not afraid to express his opinions about Yihya Sinwar and his partners. “I have a message for the Hamas leadership,” said the interviewee, journalist Muhammad Mansour. “May you be cursed by Allah. And you Sinwar, are a son of a dog. May Allah take revenge on you for the destruction you brought upon us.”

The interviewer repeatedly asked in shock if he was sure he wanted to express himself that way, but the angry interviewee did not take back his words, thus expressing the feelings of many residents of Gaza, who are fed up with the disconnected Hamas leadership that has wreaked havoc upon them.

 

Hamas terrorist takes over a humanitarian support truck. Arab networks

It was also reported that today (Sunday) clashes broke out between Gaza residents and Hamas terrorists, after a member of their family was shot dead. According to Palestinian reports, the angered family members set fire to the police station in Rafah.

The surprising the unity of the Israeli people

Finally, the last and most significant factor that the leader of the military wing of Hamas, Yihya Sinwar forgot to take into account, is the unique ability of Israeli society to unite in a split second when crisis hits. When Sinwar observed the great rift that arose in the nation around the legal legislation, the huge demonstrations, the mutual boycotts and the explosive atmosphere on the Israeli street, he believed that he found a suitable time to attack the divided-apart country.

The arch-terrorist’s fatal mistake was that he failed to understand the great virtue of the Israeli people, which know how to put everything aside in an instant, focus on what is important, draft en masse to help, either at the war-front or back in the communities, in any place they are needed.

Sinwar forgot, that the Israeli people are one big family. He is now learning the hard way, how strong Israel can become when she is united.

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