Analysis: Perpetrators of deadly attacks in Tel Aviv and Bnei Brak were not affiliated with any terror faction, united only by their hatred of Israel; IDF has to increase patrols of separation fence and punish families of terrorists to avoid 3ird intifada

The IDF is nearing the completion of a program to establish reserve units that will be tasked with securing major travel routes inside Israel and will also police public order in case of an emergency. The units will be under the authority of the Home Front Command.

The initiative was likely proposed after the rioting in mixed Arab and Jewish cities and along major routes in the north and south of the country last May during the cross border conflict with Hamas.

חיילים בתל אביב
Armed troops in Tel Aviv after a deadly terror attack on Thursday (Photo: Yuval Chen)


For years the threat of major highways being blocked by rioters was considered and plans were devised, but no one thought the IDF would assign special units to the task because as violent as those riots might be, they will be carried out by Israeli citizens.

The IDF, therefore, will find itself facing not only terror squads who may ambush cars traveling on those roads but mostly protesting Arab Israelis, with the rules of engagement in those scenarios involving live ammunition in order to ensure safe travel.

In 2022, the sight of armed soldiers policing the streets of Tel Aviv is not considered an aberration.

Before the police counter-terrorism unit Yamam was established, it was the elite IDF forces who were called in when terror struck inside Israel. Now, the military is back, in perhaps a late response to the changing face of terror.

אבטחה בתל אביב
Police forces and IDF soldiers on the streets of Tel Aviv last week (Photo: AFP)


The enemy is not the one Israel had known in the past, and the security agencies are re-grouping in order to face the new challenge.

Arab Israelis who support the Islamic State will be found and dealt with. Most are already known by the Shin Bet because of their extreme Islamist views and appearances. Dozens have already been arrested.

But the new kind of terrorist poses a different challenge.

The perpetrator of the deadly attack in Tel Aviv on Thursday was identified within two hours, even before his immediate circle in the Jenin refugee camp, was aware that he had left it.

He did not share his plans with others, did not leave a will, and was not on the radar of the Israeli security agencies as a potential threat.

תיעוד המחבל בפיגוע בדיזנגוף, תל אביב
CCTV image of terrorist who carried out deadly attack in Tel Aviv


He had not worked in Tel Aviv before, nor had he spoken Hebrew. He had a job in high-tech and carried a gun because of a dispute over his work in cryptocurrency.

He was not very young, nor was he affiliated with any militant organization. His family, like many others in the camp, had strong ties with the Palestinian Authority establishment.

His gun was used eventually to shoot innocent civilians at a busy Tel Aviv bar.

These “new terrorists” hold deep contempt for the Palestinian Authority, and unlike perpetrators of attacks in previous waves of terror, cross into Israel carrying arms in order to inflict death and injury.

No organized Palestinian faction sends them on their mission, and they answer to no one. To them, all factions have given up the fight against the “occupation”.

The attack in Bnei Brak, earlier this month, was also carried out by a new type of terrorist. A man who has nothing but contempt for the PA and a deep-seated hatred for Israel.

At 27, he too had no affiliation with any faction. He, however, was known to authorities because he had been in custody years before for planning terror attacks.

ההרוגים בפיגוע בבני ברק
The five victims of the Bnei Brak attack


How many lone-wolf actors who are able and willing to strike are out there? How can they be detected?

The Israeli Arab sector is ripe with illegal arms that can easily be obtained. Israel must be on the defensive, for now.

Troops must patrol the roads and the frontiers. The families of terror actors must be severely punished in order to deter others, and countless arrests of potential terrorists must be made.

If that does not stop lone actors from launching attacks, the IDF may have to enter Palestinian cities, as they had done during the Second Intifada in the early 2,000s, and a new uprising may begin.

As reported by Ynetnews