Rating the threats from Hizbullah, Hamas, Fatah, Al-Qaeda, Syria and Iran, an expert finds Israel only slightly less endangered than two months ago. He also finds that the US has all but abandoned Israel to Iran's nuclear program.
Dr. Guy Bechor, an Arab affairs expert at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, rates the level of security threats against Israel on a monthly basis. With 1 being a practically non-existent threat and 10 being an intensely high danger, he finds that the threats facing Israel today are essentially the same as last month, and slightly lower than the month before.
The most dangerous arena, Bechor writes on his Gplanet website, remains the terror front in the Palestinian Authority. This, despite the fact that the various factions are fighting among themselves and are therefore concentrating less on attacking Israel. "The Hamas organization's plans to attack Israel in a massive way have been put on hold," Bechor writes, "but this can change as Hamas stabilizes its hold on Gaza."
Hamas Planning on Conquering Judea and Samaria
Another reason why Israel is temporarily safe from Hamas hostilities is because "Hamas is more interested in taking over Judea and Samaria, and a show of strength against Israel is liable to thwart its hidden goals." Having successfully taken over Gaza, Bechor explains, Hamas is now concentrating on strengthening its forces in Judea and Samaria, and preparing the ground in other ways as well for its takeover there.
In addition, the IDF's counter-terror measures have been effective, while the terrorists themselves - those who have recently been freed or removed from the wanted lists - are busy renewing the terrorist infrastructures. "But this can change in the autumn," Bechor warns.
US Has Abandoned Israel to Iran
Regarding Iran and Syria, it is clear to Bechor that the U.S. is not planning to attack Iran's nuclear program and is basically leaving Israel to fend for itself. "Why is the US distributing billions of dollars to Israel and the Gulf states, if not to signal, 'Good luck with Iran, guys; we'll definitely encourage you.'" This could very well be an existential danger for Israel, Bechor writes, though Iran's nuclear program will not be ready for action for at least a year.
The danger of war with Syria has basically disappeared, at least for the short run, Bechor predicts. "Until a few months ago," Bechor writes, "Assad was ready for an attack against Israel... but the IDF's massive deployment in the Golan and many military exercises created a clear deterrence effect." The total threat level from Iran and Syria stands at 6.1, Bechor concludes.
From Hizbullah, Al-Qaeda, or other mega-terror perpetrating organizations, the danger of attacks stands at 6, Bechor estimates. "Hizbullah has practically lost its basis for existence - namely, its ability to fight Israel," he writes. "It is separated geographically from Israel by UNIFIL and the Lebanese army, and has no excuse to attack Israeli outposts, kidnap Israeli soldiers, or launch Katyushas. This situation drives [Hizbullah chief] Nasrallah crazy, and he is still hiding and under pressure... The Lebanese Army and UNIFIL are both operating reasonably and are cooperating with the IDF."