Beyond imagination

‘Fauda’ co-creator thought idea of Hamas assault was far-fetched

When Middle East analyst and ‘Fauda’ writer Avi Issacharoff was pitched a script of a cross-border invasion, he scoffed at the idea

Jessica Steinberg, The Times of Israel's culture and lifestyles editor, covers the Sabra scene from south to north and back to the center

'Fauda' co-creators Avi Issacharoff (left) and Lior Raz in Tel Aviv, May 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)
'Fauda' co-creators Avi Issacharoff (left) and Lior Raz in Tel Aviv, May 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

“Fauda” co-creator Avi Issacharoff told The Times of London last week that he scoffed at his scriptwriting team’s storyline proposal about dozens of Hamas terrorists storming the border and taking a kibbutz by surprise and controlling it.

“I was like, ‘Guys, come on, what is this? Without anyone knowing? With no intelligence indication?'” said Issacharoff, a longtime Middle East analyst and creator of the award-winning Netflix show with Lior Raz. “They’ll come to the border and a few planes or choppers will kill them. It’s too stupid.”

The idea of a terrorist invasion for the show’s fifth season seemed completely outlandish, said Issacharoff. It didn’t seem plausible that Hamas could have the weaponry, intent or ability, he said.

Now he’s trying to absorb the enormity of the attacks that Hamas terrorists carried out on October 7, killing some 1,400, abducting over 200 and perpetrating unspeakable atrocities in Israel’s Gaza border communities and towns and at the Supernova desert rave.

Issacharoff and Raz spent time last week in Sderot, working with a civilian group in the town that was hard-hit by the Hamas terrorists that day, with dozens dead and injured, a battle at the city’s police station, and ongoing rocket impacts, including during their visit.

Issacharoff said that he knew that Hamas was “sophisticated and big and strong,” but didn’t realize the extent of its strength.

However, he said, he’s never been under any illusions about Hamas’s hatred of Israel. He said members of the group used to speak to him, but not any longer. He also noted their very radical stance, which is not in line with a Western way of thinking.

Hamas doesn’t use the name Israel, said Issacharoff, but rather “Zionist entity” or “Jewish entity.”

The terrorist organization succeeded beyond its greatest expectations, he added. “The success was too big, even for them.”

Now the extent and brutality of the attacks — the worst in the history of the country — have united all of Israel against Hamas, leading to a rare consensus about the need to eliminate the terrorist regime, he said.

Destroying Hamas as a government will be easy, but finding replacement leaders will be much harder, said Issacharoff, wondering what will happen the day after to the 2 million impoverished Gazans.

Issacharoff also suggested that Hamas was using the local population as human shields and telling residents to stay put in northern Gaza despite the IDF’s warnings to evacuate for safety.

He also conjectured that Hamas calculated on the Lebanon-based Hezbollah terror group launching a full assault that hasn’t happened yet, perhaps because of the significant US intervention so far.

Most Popular
read more: