Israel launched a sort of obligatory attack on the Gaza Strip overnight, and has promised to keep doing so in the future. That’s more because it’s a politically popular thing to do, however, than it having anything to do with the rocket fire in Gaza.
Rather, the rocket fire is entirely about an internal rivalry in the tiny enclave, between the Hamas government and the Islamic Jihad movement, which was reportedly behind the attacks.
A top Islamic Jihad commander was killed in Gaza on Saturday, and the group severed ties with Hamas afterwards. The split set the stage for what could be open conflict between the two, except Hamas is much more powerful in Gaza.
Which is why missile strikes, designed to embarrass Hamas’ newly created anti-rocket force and likely to provoke Israel into striking Hamas targets, because Israel’s leadership is nothing if not predictably violent. Islamic Jihad’s rockets needn’t even hit anything, as indeed most rockets barely stray over the border and land in empty fields.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Taliban Threatens to Pull Out of Peace Talks Over US Troop Presence in Afghanistan - January 15th, 2019
- US, Russia Trade Accusations of Nuclear Deal Violations - January 15th, 2019
- Mnuchin Urges Senate to Allow Trump to Ease Russia Sanctions - January 15th, 2019
- Trump May Recognize Opposition Leader as Venezuelan President - January 15th, 2019
- US Has 4,500 Marines, F-35 Squadron on Standby to Support Syria Pullout - January 15th, 2019