Operation Breaking Dawn - the Three Day War
In December 2020, and again in December 2021, the main terrorist groups in Gaza - Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and the Popular Resistance Committee (PRC) held joint training exercises known as Firm Pillar and Firm Pillar 2. Khaled Mansour (below) of the PIJ claimed that they "had scores to settle" with Israel. On 6 August 2022, the IDF settled its score with him.
So, what happened?
On August 5, 2022, Israel began an attack with the intention of neutralising as many as possible, as fast as possible, of the PIJ leadership. This took the form of arresting PIJ leaders in the West Bank and, later, carefully targeted bombings of the PIJ in Gaza. It must be remembered that the PIJ is a terrorist organisation, proscribed by UK law. The operation followed a credible threat that the PIJ was planning an imminent attack on Israeli citizens.
The build up began on 2 August with the arrest of
Bassam al-Saadi, the PIJ’s leader in the West
Bank. Despite attempts by Egypt to mediate, the
PIJ refused to resile from its intentions.
During the three days of the operation, the IDF
estimates that at least 170 terrorist targets were
hit and a total of 51 people were killed. 24 of these were terrorists; 16 were civilians killed by PIJ rockets which misfired and a further 11 civilians were killed. It appears that some of these were children. Tragically, it is very common for terrorist
groups in Gaza to use women and children as human shields, considering them expendable.
Thankfully, the Iron Dome did its job, preventing any of the 1000 or so rockets fired into Israel from causing any deaths. The ceasefire has held, apart from a small amount of rocket fire from Gaza, since it came into effect late in the evening of Sunday 7 August and we very much hope that it will continue to do so.
The world has moved on considerably since Golda Meir famously said, “Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.” Israel lives at peace with Egypt and Jordan, and the Abraham Accords have provide the opportunity for Israel to build economic and political relationships across the Arab world. However, many Arabs in the disputed territories are being left behind, with schools and television shows still teaching children to hate Jews and to seek “martyrdom”, as the Palestinian Authority continues to handsomely reward terrorists who have murdered Jews.