ISIS says it was behind a rocket strike against Israeli civilians launched from the Gaza Strip on October 5th.
While it’s been reported for some time that the Islamic State has sympathizers and even cells operating from Gaza, now the movement is making official its presence in the Palestinian coastal enclave.
The organization’s Gaza branch is known as the Grandsons (or Descendants) of Friends of the Prophet. Their tagline is Aknaf Bait al-Maqdis – The Environs of Jerusalem – Gaza Branch.
On the organization’s website it claimed responsibility for the rocket, which landed on a street in Sderot, the closest Israeli town to the Gaza Strip. “It was part of our ongoing jihad against the enemies of Allah– the Jews.”
The website includes photos of religious Jews, including children, promising “they won’t know safety in Muslim lands as long as our veins beat.”
The group has not made public operational details nor numbers of its fighters.
ISIS also has a foot in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula just across the border from Gaza. There the organization has carried out numerous attacks, predominantly against security personnel, killing scores.
It was cleared for publication on Sunday that the Shin Bet and Jerusalem District Police exposed an ISIS terror cell in East Jerusalem that planned to carry out terror attacks throughout the country. The terror cell members are all residents of the Shuafat refugee camp in East Jerusalem.
Indictments were filed against four of the terror cell members this morning at the Jerusalem District Court. Other indictments were filed this morning against two additional members at the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court.
The investigation indicated that the terror cell members were planning to carry out several serious and massive terror attacks throughout the country. Among other terror attacks, the members planned to abduct Israelis. According to one of the indictments, some of the members even traveled to Jordan and Egypt in order to join the murderous terrorist organization and receive training.
A terrorist organization in Gaza displayed a rocket it claims can reach every strategic facility in Israel, making it a real threat to Israel.
Approximately two years after Operation Protective Edge ended, the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), one of the terrorist organization in Gaza, is signaling that it is already ready for another round of confrontation against Israel. On Monday, the terrorist organization displayed the newest model of a rocket that was manufactured locally. According to the PRC, the rocket is a real threat to Israel.
The PRC claims that the rocket can reach all of Israel’s strategic facilities. The terrorist organization released pictures of the rocket being manufactured and explained its capabilities during a show that was put on today in Rafah. In addition, the PRC released a video documenting a trial launch. However, the terrorist organization did not mention the rocket’s exact range.
The Israeli security establishment has not yet commented on the terrorist organization’s claim regarding the rocket being a true threat to Israel.
An IDF soldier was slightly injured this Saturday morning in Hebron when a Palestinian terrorist stabbed him. The soldier was transported to a hospital for medical treatment. The terrorist was eliminated by other IDF soldiers who were at the scene.
At around 7:00 AM, a Palestinian terrorist armed with a knife approached the checkpoint near Tel Rumeida in Hebron. The terrorist took out his knife and attacked the soldier who was manning the checkpoint. Other soldiers who were also at the scene opened fire on the terrorist and eliminated him. The soldier was transported to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center.
On Friday, Jerusalem Online reported that 4 terror attacks occurred shortly after one another.
At around 1:00 PM, a Jordanian terrorist in his 20s took out a knife and tried to stab Border Police officers who were patrolling near at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate. “I noticed the terrorist and fired,” said Shin, the female Border Police officer who neutralized the terrorist who attempted to carry out a stabbing attack at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate.
Shin is stationed in the area near the Damascus Gate as part of her routine security route. The terrorist armed with a knife ran towards her and another Border Police officer.
She recalled the dramatic moments: “Once I heard the shouts ‘Allahu Akbar,’ I turned around and saw the terrorist with a knife. I immediately took a step back, cocked my gun and shot him.
The terrorist, a Jordanian citizen in his 20s who just recently entered Israel, was neutralized thanks to Shin’s quick response. Border Police officers found a second knife on the terrorist while they were frisking him.
“This is what is expected from us as Border Police officers,” said Shin. “Our job is to preserve the security of the civilians.”
40 minutes later, 2 terrorists, a man and a woman, attempted to run over 3 Israelis who were waiting at a bus stop at the Elias Junction near Kiryat Arba. The IDF force that was at the bus stop neutralized the terrorists. The male terrorist was eliminated and the female terrorist was critically injured. Two Israelis were slightly injured in the attack.
About an hour after the terror attack near Kiryat Arba, stones and glass bottles full of paint were hurled at a bus on Highway 1 between Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim. The bus driver was slightly injured as a result of the glass fragments and transported to a local hospital.
The fourth terror attack occurred close to the scene of Friday’s stabbing attack. A Palestinian terrorist stabbed an IDF soldier at a checkpoint close to Tel Rumeida. The soldier sustained minor injuries and was transported to a hospital in Jerusalem. The terrorist was neutralized by other IDF soldiers who were at the scene.
Friday evening, Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan commented on the terror wave during an interview with Channel 2 News. Despite the series of terror attacks yesterday in Jerusalem and the West Bank, Erdan said that the government succeeded in suppressing the terror wave. “There has been a dramatic decrease in the number of terror attacks,” said Erdan. “The State of Israel is leading in how it is dealing with the terror attacks and has been able to suppress this terror wave.”
The Israeli officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The UK Telegraph that Wilayat Sinai had stolen at least one Egyptian M60 battle tank and had amassed a supply of Russian-made Kornet missiles, which can strike targets more than three miles away.
“It could happen today, tomorrow, in a month but within the next six months we will come into an engagement with Wilayat Sinai,” the officer said. “In the next six months they will try to carry out an attack and try to do something against Israel.”
If the officer’s prediction is borne out it would be the first attack on Israel’s southern border since 2012, when militants in Egypt launched a series of cross border raids.
At the time of the 2012 attack, the group was known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, the Supporters of Jerusalem, and was linked with al-Qaeda. But in 2014 the group pledged allegiance to ISIS and to the leader of its so-called caliphate, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Israel believes that the group is significantly better equipped now than it was four years ago.
Zack Gold, non-resident fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Hariri Centre, said the “worst case scenario” for Israel was a cross-border raid in which Wilayat Sinai was able to capture Israelis and bring them back over the border.
Such an operation would force Israel to launch retaliatory or rescue missions into the Sinai, either with Egypt’s permission or without it.
“Either way it would be very bad for relations and you would probably see protests in Cairo if there was an Israeli operation in the Sinai.”
Egypt’s military responded with a series of operations that have limited the group’s operating space but it remains active in the eastern Sinai. Israel and Egypt work closely together on counter-terror operations in the Sinai.
ISIS regularly threatens to carry out attacks against Israel and in August Wilayat Sinai said the group planned attacks against the Jewish state.
“Oh Jews, wait for us. The punishment is severe and soon you will pay a high price,” a jihadist said in an online video.
But for all its rhetoric, ISIS has so far not carried out any centrally organized attacks on Israel. While some “lone wolf” Palestinian attackers may have been inspired by the jihadist group, there has been no equivalent of the attacks in Europe against Israel.
In an article published in an ISIS newspaper in March of this year, a writer argued that the fight against Israel should not be prioritised over the battle against Arab regimes which do not enforce the jihadists’ extremist beliefs.
The Israeli army officer said he felt Wilayat Sinai would eventually come under pressure to carry out its threats against Israel.
“Many terrorist organizations use Israel as a prop but, for these statements to have any content or not be seen as empty, something must eventually happen in the field,” he said.
Itai Hori and another young man whose identity has not been cleared for publication were arrested last week at the request of the FBI on suspicion that a program they developed was used in thousands of cyber-attacks. The two suspects are both 18 years old and from the Sharon region.
According to the Israel Police, the program that the two developed when they were only 16 years old has been used in more than 150,000 cyber-attacks. The program is sold on the market and supposed to assist companies in checking the security level of their Internet sites.
Hori’s mother claims that her son is innocent. “It’s important to remember that these are just suspicions,” said the mother. “I’m sure that the things will be cleared up…I don’t believe that he did the acts that they are claiming.”
Last night, two female IDF soldiers were rescued from Tulkarem. This morning new details were revealed about how they managed to escape from the area before the crowd lynched them. They contacted the Israel Police, who instructed them how they could escape from the situation.
An initial investigation revealed that the soldiers contacted the Israel Police when they realized that they had gotten lost and stones were being thrown at them. In the conversation, they claimed that they did not know exactly where they were, which resulted in them accidently entering into Tulkarem, an area that is forbidden for Israelis.
The two soldiers noted that people were driving behind them while throwing stones at them so they could not make a U-turn and go back. The Police instructed them to continue driving so that they would not be lynched. At the same time, the Police began efforts in order to locate them.
After they were located, the Police coordinated a rescue operation with the Civil Administration and they were transferred into an Israeli area with the cooperation of the Palestinian Security Forces. After the operation, one of the soldiers stated that the Police helped to locate and rescue them.
The serious incident ended after a few hours last night with the two soldiers serving in the Paratroopers Brigade being transferred to Israel in mild condition. An initial investigation revealed that the two got lost after using a navigation application on their smart phone. The two, who were trying to get to their base in the Jordan Valley, ended up being directed towards Palestinian areas.