US Intelligence ‘Threat Assessment’ Says Hamas Isn’t Going Away

The assessment also says Iran is not pursuing nuclear weapons

An annual “threat assessment” compiled by US intelligence agencies was released on Monday and said that Israel will likely face resistance from Hamas for years to come, another sign that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s stated goal of “eradicating” the Palestinian group isn’t realistic.

“Israel probably will face lingering armed resistance from HAMAS for years to come, and the military will struggle to neutralize HAMAS’s underground infrastructure, which allows insurgents to hide, regain strength, and surprise Israeli forces,” the assessment reads.

The assessment aligns with an Israeli military intelligence document that was circulated last month and said even if Israel succeeded in dismantling Hamas as an organized military force, the group would still exist as “a terror group and a guerrilla group.” Other reports have said Israel is struggling to destroy the vast tunnel network underneath Gaza that is key to Hamas’s survival and is far more expansive than Israel initially thought.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Charles Q. Brown, the highest ranking US military officer, previously said that Israel’s mass killing of civilians in Gaza will be a recruiting boon for Hamas. “The faster you can get to a point where you stop the hostilities, you have less strife for the civilian population that turns into someone who now wants to be the next member of Hamas,” Brown said in November.

Despite believing Netanyahu’s goal is unrealistic, the US continues to provide unconditional military support for Israel’s genocidal war, which has killed at least over 31,000 Palestinians, mostly women and children.

The Biden administration is trying to distance itself from Netanyahu by criticizing his government, but the rhetoric hasn’t amounted to a policy change. The US threat assessment said that while Hamas isn’t going away, Netanyahu could lose his hold on power.

“Netanyahu’s viability as leader as well as his governing coalition of far-right and ultraorthodox parties that pursued hardline policies on Palestinian and security issues may be in jeopardy. Distrust of Netanyahu’s ability to rule has deepened and broadened across the public from its already high levels before the war, and we expect large protests demanding his resignation and new elections. A different, more moderate government is a possibility,” the report says.

The assessment also said that Iran had no role in Hamas’s October 7 attack and acknowledged Tehran is not seeking a nuclear weapon. “Iran is not currently undertaking the key nuclear weapons-development activities necessary to produce a testable nuclear device,” the report reads.

The report acknowledges that Iran’s increases in uranium enrichment since the US tore up the nuclear deal in 2018 were to gain leverage for negotiations, not seek a bomb. “Iran uses its nuclear program to build negotiating leverage and respond to perceived international pressure,” the assessment says.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.