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HomeMediaHamas' lightning-fast breakthrough is an intelligence failure for Israel

Hamas’ lightning-fast breakthrough is an intelligence failure for Israel

Hamas’ surprise attack on Israel on the 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war will be remembered as its greatest failure.

Within hours, the Gaza militants broke through the fortified barriers into southern Israel, dealing a significant blow to local military positions. For a myriad of reasons, this rapid advance into the south of the state was made possible.

“All of Israel is asking itself: Where is the IDF, where is the police, where is the security?” asked Eli Marom, the former head of the Israeli navy.”It’s a colossal failure; the hierarchies have simply failed, with vast consequences.”

First, Hamas has become much more versed at adapting to the military challenges it faces, often expending considerable effort in planning for and identifying Israeli vulnerabilities, something the Israeli defence forces are well aware of. Secondly, Israel’s surveillance system, although the most technologically advanced in the world, did not fully work behind the Palestinian society, so the unexpected manoeuvre and the incomparably huge number of rockets that hit Israel in the first hours stunned Israel’s military. Third, Hamas had seriously prepared for the operation, as it used considerable deception inside Israel to create maximum chaos and confusion among the military and the population.

For example, actions involving Hamas in recent months have not been identified by the Israeli defence forces and intelligence agencies as part of a buildup to war, according to Israeli media.

In addition, as firefights continued with Hamas infiltrators in Israeli communities in southern Israel, Israeli media continued to ask the Government: how could this have been allowed to happen on the 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war? On social media and elsewhere, Israeli leaders were openly criticized by officials for hours while the fighting gained momentum. In short, individuals such as Itamar Ben Gvir, the minister for national security, wasted time on internal squabbles.

The focus now turns to the Israeli response, as it is clear that Hamas is not in a position to fight a long-term war.

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