Israeli Army Trains for Coordinated Hamas Attack From Gaza

Exercise includes scenario simulating simultaneous attacks from tunnels, the air and sea.

An Israeli soldier during a tunnel training drill at the Nahal army base, September 28, 2016.
Ilan Assayag

The Israeli military held an exercise on Tuesday simulating a coordinated attack by Hamas from the Gaza Strip.

The exercise by the Gaza Battalion and Southern Area Command tests the army's response to a scenario that includes a major terror attack via an attack tunnel, a marine attack (such as Hamas attempted at Zikim Beach during Operation Protective Edge in 2014) and attacks from the air (for example by drones or terrorists using paragliders).

The Gaza Battalion's exercise focuses on defending against threats and not on the army's attack scenario, which is being commanded by the Southern Area Command and the General Staff.

The exercise also includes evacuating a limited number of residents in a school in the vicinity of the Gaza envelope. Soldiers trained for the possibility of a relatively large-scale attack in the tunnel scenario, which would include terrorists exiting the tunnels on motorbikes to reach a more vulnerable area. Israel captured motorcycles that Hamas had planned to use when penetrating Israel territory during Operation Protective Edge.