Photo by Kobi Richter/TPS on 24 August, 2017

Ramadan ‘Explosion’ Looms for Israel and Hamas

Public By Baruch Yedid/TPS • 25 February, 2024

Jerusalem, 25 February, 2024 (TPS) -- The statistics speak volumes. Over the years, the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem has morphed into a breeding ground for Palestinian violence with terror attacks.

This year, Ramadan is expected to begin at sundown on March 10 and Israel is at war with Hamas. Israeli leaders have hinted that they will send ground forces into Rafah, Hamas’s last stronghold if no agreement on a hostage release is made by then. On Sunday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the CBS News show, Face the Nation that the Israeli Cabinet was due to approve that same day a plan to evacuate Rafah as a precursor to entering the city.

“If we have a deal, it will be delayed somewhat, but it will happen. If we don’t have a deal, we’ll do it anyway,” Netanyahu said.

Hamas is believed to have four battalions in Rafah.

The terror group also threatened an “explosion” of rage if Israel moves to restrict Muslim worshippers from visiting the Temple Mount during Ramadan.

Ramadan is two weeks away and the clock is ticking.

Will this Ramadan be remembered for a ceasefire, or the Battle of Rafah?

For the last three years, terror spiked during Ramadan anyway, so what difference does war make for Israelis?

During Ramadan of 2021, Hamas orchestrated a barrage of rocket attacks from Gaza, triggering a full-blown 11-day war. The violence spilled over into Arab-Israeli communities, where simmering tensions erupted into widespread riots and unrest.

During Ramadan of 2022, Palestinians killed 15 Israelis in terror attacks ranging from shooting, stabbing and car-ramming attacks. The surge of violence continued after Ramadan – four more Israelis were killed during the spring – and the Israel Defense Forces cracked down, launching Operation Wave Breaker.

By the end of 2022, counterterror operations thwarted more than 500 attacks, but 31 Israelis were killed.

And in 2023, Palestinians barricaded themselves inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque, while Hamas squads in Lebanon fired rockets at Israel during Passover, which overlapped with Ramadan.

At least 1,200 people were killed and 240 Israelis and foreigners were taken hostage in Hamas’s attacks on Israeli communities near the Gaza border on October 7. Of the remaining 134 hostages, Israel recently declared 31 of them dead.