Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu promised on Tuesday a “hard response” after one of the daily terrorist attacks from Gaza critically wounded an IDF officer.
“We will fight and we will hit them [Hamas] very, very hard – very hard. That's the only way to fight them. The way to fight terror is to fight terror, and that we shall do with great force,” the Prime Minister told visiting Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev.
Prime Minister Netanyahu reminded Plevneliev, “Iran supported Hezbollah's terror attacks in Bulgaria; Iran is supporting terror attacks now against us in Gaza.
“Today we engaged in exchanges against terrorist aggression that comes from our southern border in Gaza, but it actually comes from Iran and a whole terror network that is supporting these attacks.”
His promise of a responding with “great force” is a continuation of the government policy to stage symbolic retaliations following rocket and bomb attacks that do not cause injuries or extensive property damage. In most cases, the Air Force targets a “terrorist smuggling tunnel” or a “weapons factory,” usually a small workshop. When there is a “ticking bomb” terrorist cell preparing to attack, or after serious injuries such as occurred Tuesday morning, the IDF carries out harsher counterterrorist measures.
The “Gaza roulette” tactic keeps violence from escalating to the level of a large-scale ground invasion into Gaza, similar to the Operation Cast Lead counterterrorist operation nearly four years ago.
However, the tactic leaves southern Israel residents in the same war-time preparedness routine they have suffered since the outbreak of the 12-year-old Second Intifada, also known as the Oslo War.
Tuesday morning’s bomb blast on a patrol route at the Gaza security fence coincided with an historic visit by the Emir of Qatar, the first head of a country to visit since Hamas wrested control from the rival Fatah terrorist organization in a bloody militia war five years ago.
The Qatar leader promised $250 million in aid to Gaza.