Israel Worries About Israeli Arabs Joining IS in Syria

Security echelons in Israel are deeply concerned about the fact that dozens of Israeli Arabs have joined the Islamic State fighters in Syria and Iraq. They have also learned that young Palestinians left the Shomron and Har Chevron several weeks ago and moved to Jordan en route to joining the fundamentalist Islamic group.

“Today they are there,” a senior defense source said last night. ‘Tomorrow they will come back here to use the murderous methods they learned there.” Therefore, there is no choice but for the GSS to begin to increase its oversight on Israelis who leave the country to join Islamic terror groups around the world, he said.

The defense establishment is taking the threats of IS very seriously, and does not plan to accept the opinion of intelligence sources who said last week that Israel has nothing to fear from IS, and that if it threatens Israel, the country will be able to deal with them. The number of people joining IS and extremist groups like al-Qaida has reached the tens of thousands. They are equipped with state-of-the-art weapons, and it is impossible to negate the possibility that they will land on the Israeli border or even operate from within Yehudah and Shomron.

Israel must not make light of the danger, which exists, security sources say, and they stress that the preparation for this danger must be practical and pointed. True, at this point, IS is still far from Israel’s borders, but it is only a matter of time before we see them cropping up on the northern or eastern border, and possibly even the border with Gaza and Sinai.

In recent days, IS and al- Qaida flags were raised in Arab villages and in the Arab cities in Wadi Ara, and several local personalities expressed support for the global activities of the fundamental Islamist groups.

At the cabinet meeting next week, the defense officials plan to report to the ministers on the actions being taken within the Green Line against Israeli Arab youths joining such organizations. Several decisions will also be made to strengthen Israeli surveillance of the extremists on the northern borders of the state.