Murphy's Law: Gaza Blowback


September 5, 2022: In Gaza, the Iran-backed Islamic Jihad Islamic terrorist organization is still trying to recover from a major failure during an August attack on Israel. On August 7th Islamic Jihad declared a ceasefire three days after they broke the truce and attacked Israel, launching 1,100 rockets against southern Israel. About 200 of those rockets were defective and either failed to launch or landed in Gaza. The Israeli Iron dome rocket defense system intercepted all but a few of the rockets headed for a populated area. Even before Israel retaliated on the 5th, Gazans had been killed or wounded when the defective rockets landed inside Gaza. Israel kept Gaza under constant aerial surveillance and captured video of the rockets being launched from populated areas, including mosques, schools and residential buildings. The Israeli air strikes destroyed those structures, after warning (usually by cellphone) civilians to get out. Israel hit 147 Islamic Jihad targets, including key leaders and known tunnels used for storing rockets and Islamic Jihad personnel. There were also police raids in the West Bank, to arrest 20 Islamic Jihad members who were seeking to organize attacks on Israel from the West Bank.

Islamic declared itself the victim because 26 Gazans were killed and over 300 wounded. A closer examination of the deaths in Gaza revealed that fifteen of the dead were killed by defective Islamic Jihad rockets that landed inside Gaza. Only 11 Gazans died because of the Israeli airstrikes carried out after the attack. The Israeli airstrikes targeted several Islamic Jihad leaders and succeeded in killing them.

Iran and Islamic Jihad demanded that the UN punish Israel for defending itself so vigorously. The Islamic Jihad attack came despite a ceasefire agreement negotiated by the larger Hamas group that rules Gaza. Hamas says it cannot control the smaller Islamic Jihad, but that is because Hamas also receives some economic aid from Iran. The Islamic Jihad leader arrived in Iran on August 4th for discussions with their Iranian backers. Hamas pressed the Islamic Jihad to halt its violence and back a ceasefire. Israel controls access to Gaza for supplies and jobs in Israel for Gazans. All that halted while Israel was under attack.

Iranian aid consists of a lot of rockets or rocket components and instruction or instructors to aid in assembly. At the same time Islamic Jihad continues to build less-effective rockets in local workshops. These rockets were the ones most likely to misfire and land inside Gaza. Islamic Jihad had also buried some rockets in silos that can be launched remotely. While simple in concept this remote launch method does not work well and these rockets often explode when launched or otherwise fail to perform.

Compounding all this was the Islamic terrorist doctrine of declaring their civilian dead as “involuntary martyrs”. That works as long as some damage is done to the intended target. The Israelis don’t cooperate and to make it worse, document (via videos) the failures of the Islamic terrorists, in this case Islamic Jihad. Not only is this embarrassing, but is not the sort of thing Islamic Jihad can turn into criticism of Israel.


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