An Egyptian intelligence official says Egypt, which often serves as a mediator between Israel and Hamas, had spoken repeatedly with the Israelis about “something big,” without elaborating.
He says Israeli officials were focused on the West Bank and played down the threat from Gaza.
Netanyahu’s government is made up of supporters of Jewish West Bank settlers who have demanded a security crackdown in the face of a rising tide of violence there over the last 18 months.
“We have warned them an explosion of the situation is coming, and very soon, and it would be big. But they underestimated such warnings,” says the official, who speaks on condition of anonymity because he isn’t authorized to discuss the content of sensitive intelligence discussions with the media.