July 13, 2024

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July 13, 2024

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Is Israel On The Verge Of War?: PIJ Terrorists Fire Hundreds Of Rockets Following Targeted Israeli Operation

Erick Stakelbeck

Israel is possibly on the verge of war.

How did this all begin? Operation Shield and Arrow is what Israel has named it. It began overnight Tuesday with a surprise attack, which is the only way to describe it. Israeli airstrikes in Gaza eliminated three top Palestinian Islamic Jihad leaders.

One was the leader of Islamic Jihad operations in northern Gaza, the other was a member of the Islamic Jihad Military Council, and the third member directed Islamic Jihad activities in the West Bank. Now we call the West Bank “Judea and Samaria” because that’s what the Bible calls it. It is the Biblical heartland of Israel. 

The Israeli airstrikes were a delayed response to what happened last week when Palestinian Islamic Jihad launched over 100 rockets at southern Israel.

Israel did not really have a significant response last week, and many were very critical of the Netanyahu government. The Netanyahu government certainly had the element of surprise because this was nearly a week after the rocket barrage. Israel acted, acted swiftly, and acted decisively in eliminating these three Palestinian Islamic Jihad commanders and carrying out additional airstrikes in the strip against Islamic Jihad targets.

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Hamas rules Gaza with an iron fist, but it works side by side with its fellow Iranian proxy, Palestinian Islamic Jihad. From time to time, they will launch rockets in tandem; so far, Hamas has set this one out and let Islamic Jihad go toe to toe with Israel.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad have what’s called a joint operations room. They work in tandem and are in constant contact. Most importantly, they’re in contact with their masters in Tehran and also with Hezbollah in southern Lebanon. That entire ring of fire communicates on a daily basis.

Israel did not strike Hamas, which is a key point there. So far, it seems Hamas does not want to expand this, getting involved and having Israel unleash its wrath on them.

Israel carried out additional airstrikes throughout the past 24 hours. We did not see an immediate Islamic Jihad response. Many believe that the reason was that the Islamic Jihad was stunned. They did not expect what Israel did in eliminating overnight those three terror commanders.

Now today, they did begin to respond. This was inevitable; Israel knew that it was coming.

At the time of this report, over 600 rockets have been launched from Gaza towards Israel. Now, notice my wording here. I did not say that over 600 rockets have struck Israel. No, no, no. Over 600 rockets have been launched toward Israel. What happened to them?

Number one, Iron Dome has done its job. Israel’s groundbreaking and incredible, I believe God sent, missile defense system has intercepted a good number of these rockets. 

Number two, a good number of these rockets—and we saw this in May 2021—fell inside of Gaza. They’re not making it over the border into Israel. Palestinian civilians are killed because the rockets launched by Palestinian terror groups are falling on Gaza homes, schools, and playgrounds. Israel has called this a double war crime, and rightly so.

The UN, the European Union, and the Biden administration are gnashing their teeth over Israel’s response to Islamic Jihad terror.

Remember, these groups, like Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Hezbollah, and Lebanon, intentionally use civilians as human shields. These terrorists have no hesitation in using women, children, and the elderly, literally as human shields. What does Israel do? The Israel Defense Forces, along with the US military, have the strictest rules of engagement in the history of warfare. I do not say that lightly. If the IDF sees civilians used as human shields, they will abort the mission. Even if it’s a high-value terror target, they will abort the mission.

Sometimes people naively and frankly, from a lack of education and knowledge of the region and what’s going on, say, “Can’t they just get along? It’s an endless cycle of violence. They’re both to blame.” No, they’re not. There’s not a moral equivalency here between Israel and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Egypt is apparently feverishly trying to broker a truce between Islamic Jihad and Israel. Israel has good relations with Egypt. They have a peace treaty, and Egypt is in contact with these terror groups in Gaza.

The Palestinian terror groups will try right before the ceasefire is going to kick off; all of a sudden, one last volley of rockets will come into Israel so these terror groups can claim victory. We pray that’s not the case this time around. Right before the ceasefire, the fighting usually escalates.

So far, over 600 rockets have been fired, and several have hit homes in southern Israel. At least eight people have been hurt while running for bomb shelters in southern Israel and one killed.

I love the people of southern Israel, who are courageous and are dealing with this nonsense every single day. Folks, keep them in your prayers. In southern Israel, it is mandatory that they have a bomb shelter inside their homes.

I was in Ashkelon, which bore the brunt of those Hamas rockets in May 2021. It’s not just some homemade bottle rockets or fireworks being haphazardly launched out of Gaza. They are increasingly advanced and increasingly more precise.

Today, a massive rocket barrage has also targeted Tel Aviv and central Israel. Some 70-75% of the Israeli population lives in and around the Tel Aviv metropolitan area, hugging the Mediterranean coast. Now the rockets thankfully did not land in Tel Aviv; no one was hurt, but these terror groups have come a long way.

The big red line for Israel is in southern Lebanon, which possesses at least some precision-guided missiles… that’s a whole other level. Additionally, while Hamas and Islamic Jihad have tens of thousands of rockets between them, Hezbollah to the north has some 150,000 rockets and missiles pointed at every inch of Israel right now.

When rockets can reach Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, and even towards Haifa in previous engagements, you know that Israel’s got a serious problem.

At the end of the day, it’s not about what Palestinian Islamic Jihad or Hamas wants. It’s what their masters in Tehran want. It’s often been said that the Iranian regime will fight to the last drop of Arab blood, which is a sad commentary, but I think very true if you look at Iran’s proxies throughout the region.

We must prepare Israel for a multi-front war. I believe it’s a precursor to Ezekiel 38 and 39, the war of Gog and Magog. That’s the future war where God Almighty directly intervenes in a massive, mighty, undeniable way.

Israel needs a whole lot of prayer right now. We are mandated to pray for the land of Israel and to pray for the peace of Jerusalem as a follower of Jesus. 

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