The IDF must clearly defeat the Lion’s Den group  

The Lion's Den group is showing signs of weakening and four of its members have surrendered to the PA, the new wave of terrorism in the West Bank requires Israel to change the rules of the game against terrorism. The time has come to change the policy of containment and move to a policy of "zero tolerance" for any act of terrorism.

The killing by the IDF and the Shin Bet of several senior leaders of the Lion’s Den terrorist group, including Tamer Kilani, Wadia Al-Hoh, Muhammad al-Azizi, Abd al-Rahman Subch and Ibrahim al-Nabulsi, is a very important achievement, but it is not enough to uproot this group from its roots in the city of Nablus.

The group is now led by the terrorist Muhammad al-bana and claims that it is trying to recruit new members and is trying to quickly rehabilitate itself in order to return to carrying out attacks.
On the other hand, the group shows signs of weakening which are proof that the Israeli military pressure is working.

Fearing for their lives, four of its members turned themselves in to the PA last night, including Mahmoud al-Bana, who is considered the “brains” of the group.

The Lion’s Den group issued a special statement in which it asked not to spread rumors about the persons who turned themselves in and clarified that those persons did so by their own decision .

At least some of the members of the group understand that continuing on the path of terror will lead to their death and they are under pressure from their families to hand themselves over to the PA so that they will not be killed by the IDF.

The IDF damaged the operational capabilities of the Lion’s Den group to carry out attacks, but this is not the end of the story, the feelings of revenge are great and fuel the desire to reorganize and continue the armed struggle against Israel.

The leadership of the Palestinian Authority and Nablus see the Israeli operations in Nablus as part of Benny Gantz and Yair Lapid’s election campaign
to get more votes for next week, they do not understand that the decision was made at the political level to eliminate the activities of the group called “Lion’s Den” .

The IDF and the Shin Bet try to target only the terrorists in order not to prevent harm to the civilian population that is not involved in terrorism, but the huge funerals in Nablus of the terrorists with the participation of tens of thousands of residents symbolize more than anything the hatred for Israel and the support for the idea of an armed struggle against it, The Israeli Bennet-Lapid Gantz governments neglected the security situation in the West Bank.

They led to the strengthening of the terrorist groups in Nablus and Jenin and now there is an obligation to eliminate them quickly because they are planning to carry out attacks inside Israel itself.

The blow that Israel must inflict on the Lions’ Den group must be crushing and deadly, it must clearly convey to the residents of the West Bank the message that Israel has completely defeated the members of the group who have become the icon of terrorism in the West Bank.

The Israeli victory must be one that clearly removes the “spirit of resistance” from the Palestinian youth, the physical elimination of the terrorists must be a priority over the arrest, no Palestinian youth wants to die and become a martyr and we must not fall into the trap of Palestinian propaganda, the young fear death and they must know that the IDF and the Shin Bet do not compromise, anyone who engages in terrorism and wants to kill Jews, is sentenced to death.

This is how Israeli deterrence needs to be built in order for it to be effective.

Israel must not accept a situation in which there are organized terrorist groups in the West Bank that take over entire areas and keep the PA security forces away from them.

Such groups are a source of constant threat to the IDF forces, to the Jewish settlers in Judea and Samaria, and to the residents of the State of Israel.

Israel must penetrate the consciousness of the young Palestinian generation quickly and clearly, the new message must be clear that there is no compromise with terrorism and every terrorist will find his death without concessions.

If this generation is indeed discouraged as the Palestinians claim, it must understand that if it follows the path of terrorism it will lose more, not only itself but also the members of its families.

The new terrorist groups in the northern West Bank grew because of Israeli laxity and the neglect of the Bennet-Lapid-Ganz governments in dealing with them during the past year, the IDF’s large arrest operation in the West Bank did not break the wave of terrorism, when the IDF realized this it moved to the phase of renewing targeted killings but also this step is not enough, Israel needs to conquer all terrorist strongholds in the northern West Bank and physically eliminate them in the most aggressive way in order to convey the new message.

Israel should delete from its dictionary the term “containment policy” and move to the new term of “zero tolerance” for terrorism.

The terrorist organizations succeeded in planting in the consciousness of the young Palestinian generation the idea of resistance, that is, an armed struggle instead of progress towards a peaceful solution, coexistence and security coordination, Israel must erase these messages from the consciousness of the young generation and assimilate the message of deterrence and the equation that engaging in terrorism means immediate death for those involved at it.

The Israeli propaganda system should explain that every Palestinian terrorist killed is a hero only for a short time, he is quickly forgotten and thrown into the dustbin of history.
This is what happened to the terrorists of the “Black Panther” and “Red Eagle” squads who operated in the first intifada in Jenin and Nablus and were killed by the IDF. Who remembers them today?

All these terrorists have been completely erased from the consciousness of the Palestinians, so should be the fate of the .”Lions Den”

The key is in the hands of the political echelon, the IDF and the Shin Bet can carry out the task if assigned to it.

Yoni Ben Menachem Senior Middle East Analyst

About Yoni Ben Menachem

Yoni Ben Menachem is a Middle East senior analyst ,a journalist and
the former CEO of the Israel Broadcasting Authority(IBA). He has
decades of experience in written and video journalism. Ben
Menachem’s path in the media world began as a producer for
Japanese television in the Middle East. After that, he held many key
positions in the media The Israeli: CEO of the Israel Broadcasting
Authority, director of “Kol Israel” Radio, reporter on West Bank and
Gaza Strip affairs, political reporter and commentator, commentator
on Middle East affairs and editor-in-chief and presenter of the
program “Middle East Magazine”. 

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