Terror sets the agenda 

The security situation is deteriorating in northern Samaria and it is the terrorist groups that set the agenda for the month of Ramadan. The IDF must take the initiative and launch an extensive military operation against the terrorist groups in northern Samaria.



The serious attack in the town of Hawara in the Nablus region where the two Israeli brothers Hallel and Yagel Yaniv were murdered and the events that followed against the residents of Hawara are a dangerous development that indicates the deterioration of the security situation in northern Judea and Samaria. 

According to Palestinian eyewitnesses, the attack was carried out by a single terrorist wearing the uniform of the Lions Den terrorist group. It seems that the attack was well planned in advance to be a revenge attack for the successful IDF operation against the Lions Den terrorist group in Nablus last week, during which 12 Palestinians were killed, about half of them armed terrorists.


The attack in Hawara indicates that it is terrorism that dictates the agenda and tries to establish a new equation, blood for blood, that is, the murder of Israeli soldiers and civilians in response to the killing of any terrorist by the IDF forces. 

The murderous attack took place on a major traffic route where hundreds of IDF soldiers and Israeli civilians who live in the area pass every day, it is a route that runs through the center of an Arab village that is loaded with vehicles most of the day and can be a death trap for any Israeli who travels on it, therefore, the first thing that should be learned from the attack is to change the traffic regulations in regards to the movement of Israeli vehicles on this route. 

The violent reaction of hundreds of Israeli settlers who went to the town of Hawara and burned vehicles and houses in protest of the shocking murder, indicates that the IDF has lost security control of the area.


The law must not be taken into one’s own hands, despite the terrible pain following the murder, this is a warning to the right-wing government that if it does not respond with a strong hand to the continued shooting attacks by the armed terrorist groups in northern Samaria, the security situation will go out of its control and the settlers themselves will take revenge for any attack, such an activity of the settlers are dangerous and may complicate Israel internationally. 

The time has come for the government to take a tougher hand against terrorism in the northern West Bank and no longer follow the path followed by the Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid governments. 

The armed terrorist groups in northern Samaria began to emerge in the field after the IDF’s major military operation in the Gaza Strip in May 2021. They became stronger and established, and the Bennett and Lapid governments decided to deal with them through a daily arrest operation due to American pressure. 

What should have been done and is still required is to uproot the terrorist infrastructure, that is to temporarily occupy the Nablus and Jenin areas, kill or arrest  the terrorists and dismantle the terrorist infrastructure. 

Every day that passes without the IDF launching such an operation, the terrorist groups become even stronger, new young people join them and they spread to other areas. A few days ago, the terrorist group Lions Den announced that it had established a new group on its behalf in the city of Tulkarm. 

The timing of the attack in Hawara on the day of the convening of the security meeting in Aqaba was intended to send a message to the PA from the Palestinian terrorist organizations that it no longer controls the area and that they are the ones who set the agenda. 

This is a slap in the face to the Palestinian Authority and to everyone who was involved in organizing the meeting in Aqaba, in fact, this meeting was born dead in advance and there will be no real results that give hope for peace to the Palestinians or Israel. 

The terrorist organizations are trying to change the reality for the month of Ramadan and turn it into the month of launching the new intifada against Israel, they have been working on this for several months already in coordination with Iran’s Revolutionary Guards.


They are trying to return, through terrorism, the Palestinian problem to the top of the international agenda even though the world is preoccupied with the issue of the Russian military invasion of Ukraine and its consequences. 

If PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas does not wake up from his winter sleep, the terrorist organizations will gradually take over more parts of the West Bank, Israel must not wait for Mahmoud Abbas, it must take the initiative and prepare for an extensive military operation in northern Samaria even before the month of Ramadan, the large arrest operation of the IDF has exhausted itself, it was only partially successful and a broader and more prolonged action by the IDF against terrorism in northern Samaria is required. 

The Biden administration wants calm on the ground in order to focus on dealing with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but the terrorist organizations do not intend to sit quietly, therefore, the political echelon in Israel would do well to make a quick decision for extensive military action against the terrorist groups in northern Samaria proactively, otherwise, the attacks will drag the IDF for such action at a time that the terrorist groups will choose. 

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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