More than they can afford

Less than a week ago, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), Hamas, and other terror groups, fired more than 250 rockets into southern and central Israel.  The attacks caused relatively few injuries, but damage to Israeli property was significant.  Israel's Iron Dome defense system intercepted an estimated 90 percent of the rockets which were headed toward populated areas.

This renewed violence came as Islamic Jihad vowed to avenge the killing of its leader, Baha Abu al-Ata.  The IDF, along with Israel's intelligence services, identified al-Ata as a true senior commander of the terrorist group known as Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip. He was responsible for most of the significant rocket and border attacks against Israel from Gaza in recent months with more being planned.

Israel is under no illusions.  Egypt and others have been busy brokering a cease-fire however Israel knows that any truce is merely a tactic used by PIJ, Hamas and other terror groups to buy time in order to restock their arsenals and strengthen their forces.  Knowing the international community is on their side, the goal of these terror groups is to provoke Israel beyond choice into taking serious, retaliatory, action.  While attacks may cease for a short while, their violent intent to destroy Israel and her people will never cease. Stalling for time, terror groups such as Hamas which operates in Gaza, shamelessly admit that truces are merely an opportunity to accumulate more lethal weapons from the Iranians for future confrontations with Israel.  PIJ, Hamas and others are working hand in hand with Iran in the north.  Collectively, they are waiting for the right time to strike Israel in a massive attack from both the north and the south.  The desire for the ultimate destruction of Israel is part of the Arab - Palestinian DNA.  Hatred for Israel and the Jews is bred into Palestinian children from the moment they are born. Murdering Jews is seen as a praiseworthy goal which comes with handsome rewards.  By training young Palestinians in the art of mass murder, seeking out opportunities to inflict the greatest harm on the greatest number of Jews, Israel must be on constant alert.  It will take generations to wash the desire to murder out of the minds of the Palestinians.  Not only must Israel be on constant alert, she must also be ready to act ... defensively and decisively.

Having lived in Israel and having exhausted three passports traveling back and forth, I know from experience that all Israelis regard war as a last resort to be avoided if at all possible.  Israel’s rather passive responses to acts of war and aggression by her hostile neighbors only emboldens them to perpetrate additional acts of terror.  Thanks to Iran, PIJ, Hamas and other terror groups are rapidly gaining access to weapons and projectiles which have greater accuracy and longer ranges.  This greatly changes the stakes for Israel making it essential for Israel to get tough.  Yes, the U.N. and other world leaders will falsely accuse Israel of "disproportionate response" but one of the principal obligations of any state is to provide security to its citizens. The residents of southern Israel have been living long enough as refugees in their own country.  While rocket attacks against Israel do not make news every day, they do occur almost every day.  Jewish residents living in the south find themselves and their families running to bomb shelters at all hours of the day and night. To be tough, the choice need not be full scale war, but it must be convincing.  It's time for Israel to fully demonstrate her muscle. Radical Islam must be made to understand that the price for attacking Israel is very costly.  In fact, they must be made to see that it's more than they can afford.