June 26, 2023 | Flash Brief

Hamas-Linked Terrorists Attempt West Bank Rocket Attack

June 26, 2023 | Flash Brief

Hamas-Linked Terrorists Attempt West Bank Rocket Attack

Latest Developments

Palestinian terrorists attempted to fire rockets from the West Bank at Israel on June 26 in an escalation of tactics. The rockets, launched near Jenin, fell short inside the West Bank, causing no damage or casualties. The Ayyash Battalion, a local terrorist group that identifies with Hamas, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the target was Ram-On, just north of the West Bank boundary.

Video circulated online showed apparently improvised short-range rockets. The Ayyash Battalion named them “Qassam 1,” a nod to Hamas’ rocketry nomenclature. Israel has been warning that rockets — for two decades a common part of the terrorist arsenal in the Gaza Strip — could reach the West Bank. The Shin Bet said one of the reasons for Israel’s decision to target Islamic Jihad leaders in last month’s Operation Shield and Arrow was to foil their attempt to set up a rocket manufacturing infrastructure in the West Bank.

Expert Analysis

“The fielding of rockets in the West Bank, even if only in its early stages, is supremely worrying. If allowed to proliferate, this kind of weapon would threaten not only Israeli soldiers and civilians but eventually core national interests like Ben Gurion Airport and the Haifa refineries.” — Mark Dubowitz, FDD CEO

“The Iranian regime has invested decades and untold sums to arm and train Hamas and Islamic Jihad to fire rockets at Israel from the Gaza Strip. Until now, Israel has successfully halted Tehran’s efforts to mount a similar effort in the West Bank. This failed rocket attempt is a wake-up call for Israel. The regime is trying to replicate its successes in Gaza. A major effort is now needed to root out the nascent rocket program in the West Bank. From all appearances, this is a race against time.” — Jonathan Schanzer, FDD Senior Vice President for Research

“This development should be of no less concern to Jordan. In time, these rockets could easily be turned against Amman. Israel should be putting every effort into coordinating with Jordan on intelligence to thwart the rocket threat.” Joe Truzman, Research Analyst at FDD’s Long War Journal

Related Analysis

Iran-Backed West Bank Chaos,” by Joe Truzman

Analysis: Iran Leverages Armed Groups Against Israel,” by Joe Truzman

Iran’s Multifront Strategy Against Israel,” by Jonathan Schanzer


Israel Palestinian Politics