Ya'alon: Terrorists better not test us

Defense Minister lights Hanukkah candles in Eshkol, promises to upgrade the region's defensive capabilities.

Ben Ariel,

Ya'alon lights Hanukkah candles in Eshkol
Ya'alon lights Hanukkah candles in Eshkol
Ariel Hermoni/Defense Ministry

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon visited the Eshkol Regional Council on Wednesday evening, where he lit a Hanukkah candle of Hanukkah with locals.

The Eshkol Regional Council, located near the border with Gaza, has been the target of many rocket attacks by Gaza terrorists over the years.

During the evening, Ya'alon said, "We are less than a year and a half after Operation Protective Edge, during which this region lost friends, including a small child, Daniel Tregerman. It certainly was a period of darkness. I think that the period since then, as a result of local leadership and our aid, has been a ray of light."

Ya’alon assured local residents that the defense establishment will continue to invest in the region and warned terrorists not to test Israel’s patience.

"Here in the Gaza Belt, in the situation we are experiencing, there is undoubtedly a need to invest more in defense operations, but also in infrastructure. This area will receive the best barrier that Israel knows how to make at this time in terms of technological capabilities that will provide an answer to all threats," he promised.

"I hope nobody will put us to the test, as they did about a year and a half ago - a test from which they are still licking their wounds. We also licked our wounds, but they are licking their wounds to this day and maybe for the next two decades in light of what happened on the other side. And I think they understand that whoever lifts a hand against us, whether here or elsewhere, they will pay a heavy price," said Ya'alon.

Despite relative quiet in the Gaza region, the Eshkol region and other localities are still occasionally targeted by terrorist rockets from Gaza.

Hamas has been stepping up its domestic production of missiles, largely due to the fact that an Egyptian buffer zone has kept arms from foreign backers like Iran and Qatar from reaching it through Sinai, and Israel has been implementing a naval blockade to blocked the route from the sea.