Residents of Israel’s South Feel They Live on Ticking Time Bomb as Gov’t Fails to Address Terrorism

The israel Defence Forces are boosting their presence on the Gaza border in anticipation of a potential escalation by the Strip’s militants, who are marking first anniversary since the assassination of Baha Abu Al Ata, one of Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s top commanders.

Bar-Ilan, a native of Kfar Gaza, a Jewish community located only five kilometers away from the Gaza Strip, remembers well that night of 12 November, when sirens went off and rockets started falling.

On that night, at 4am local time, israel launched an operation that killed Baha Abu Al Ata, one of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s (PIJ) top commanders, and the rage of the group was soon to come.

In the days following the attack, PIJ militants launched more than 450 rockets at Israel’s towns and cities; 90 percent of them were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defence system.

That reality was familiar to Bar Ilan, who has seen a number of escalations and who has lived through several wars between Israel and the militants of the Strip. 

No End in Sight

But the targeted killing of Abu Al Ata and the face-off that followed shortly after sharpened her feelings of “helplessness and frustration,” especially after realising that Israel’s government preferred to talk, rather that act.

“Politicians threw around many slogans, including that Israel will deal a blow to anyone who dares to harm the residents of the south. In reality, however, not much has been done. Sometimes the fire towards Israel escalates, sometimes…

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