Time for Israel to employ hit squads.
Targeted hits signal ‘Israel won’t tolerate a war of attrition’
Israel’s targeted killings of three senior Hamas military leaders and the possible elimination of Muhammad Deif over the past two days signals Hamas that Jerusalem will not tolerate a low-intensity war of attrition, officials said on Thursday.
“When we said we won’t agree to a war of attrition, and that if they lob a few mortar shells we will not just lob a few back, we meant it,” one government official said. “This might be a difficult learning process, but at a certain point Hamas will understand one way or another that we will not tolerate rocket fire.”
The targeted assassinations also sent a clear message to Hamas leaders that if they were involved in any way in attacking Israelis – “from the guy low down on the food chain taking a rocket out of a tunnel, to the guy at the top of the food chain giving the command” – they were all legitimate targets, the official said.
Asked whether Hamas political leader in Gaza Ismail Haniyeh was a legitimate target, the official would say only that Israel does not draw any distinction between different parts of Hamas.