After Border Flare-up, Hamas Mouthpiece Warns: Israel Crossing Red Lines, War May Follow

Days after Hamas and Defense Minister Lieberman traded threats: Gaza gunfire hits army vehicle, prompts Israeli shelling of Hamas position.

An Israeli tank on the border with the Gaza Strip, January 15, 2017.
An Israeli tank on the border with the Gaza Strip, January 15, 2017. Eliyahu Hershkovitz

Israeli soldiers sustained gunfire on Thursday near the border with Gaza. None were hurt in the incident, the army said, but a patrol car was hit.

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Reports in Gaza said Israel had fired shells at a Hamas watch post in northern in Gaza's Beit Lahia. None were said hurt as a result of the Israeli fire.

"If Israel wants a long period of calm, it must understand that the equation has changed, and may now be based on the principle of attack-for-attack, outpost-for-outpost and target-for-target," said the website. "The last challenge faced by the resistance portends a scenario of conflict similar to the equation in the last round of hostilities, or even a breakup of the equation should matters continue to escalate."

"If Israel wants a long period of calm, it must understand that the equation has changed, and may now be based on the principle of attack-for-attack, outpost-for-outpost and target-for-target," said the website. "The last challenge faced by the resistance portends a scenario of conflict similar to the equation in the last round of hostilities, or even a breakup of the equation should matters continue to escalate."

Military Intelligence chief Herzl Halevi told Knesset members Wednesday that the economically ailing Gaza is nearing a crisis under Hamas.

Halevi was speaking a day after the state comptroller harshly criticized Israeli political and military leaders for their performance before and during the 2014 Gaza war.

The Israel Air Force struck five military targets in Gaza on Monday afternoon in retaliation for rocket fire. The IDF said the strikes targeted Hamas infrastructure. Four people were reported wounded in the Israeli strike.

Hamas said in response to the strikes that it "won't stand by in the face of continued Israeli aggression against the forces of the resistance and the intentional escalation on Israel's part."

Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that while Israel has no intention of launching a military operation in Gaza, it will not ignore rocket fire. "I suggest Hamas take responsibility and calm down," he said. 

Early on Monday, a rocket fired from Gaza exploded in southern Israel. No one was hurt and no damage was caused as the rocket fell in an open area.

A barrage of rockets were fired at the Red Sea resort town of Eilat and at least three were shot down by Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system nearly a month ago. The attack originated in the Sinai and an ISIS affiliate in Egypt claimed responsibility for the rocket fire.