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IDF chief says Hamas ‘didn’t read us correctly,’ made a ‘mistake’ by attacking

FILE: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi at a press conference after a security cabinet meeting following the escalation of violence in the Gaza Strip, at IDF headquarters in Tel Aviv, on November 12, 2019. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
FILE: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi at a press conference after a security cabinet meeting following the escalation of violence in the Gaza Strip, at IDF headquarters in Tel Aviv, on November 12, 2019. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi says in a statement from Tel Aviv’s Kirya base that the current operation ended with “very different” results to previous flareups, and that Hamas “made a severe and grave mistake by shooting toward Israel.”

Kohavi, like Netanyahu and Gantz before him, also says the Palestinian terror group was dealt a bigger blow than it anticipated.

IDF chief of staff Aviv Kohavi, at a press conference after the Gaza ceasefire, May 21, 2021 (Screenshot)

“It didn’t read us correctly, and was faced with force it didn’t expect,” he says, adding that the military “made major efforts not to harm civilians” despite Hamas operating in civilian areas.

He says it is not happenstance that Hamas rocket fire tailed off toward the end of the fighting, implying that the blow to Hamas’s rocket launch capacity was extensive.

Shin Bet chief Nadav Argaman, at a press conference after the Gaza ceasefire, May 21, 2021 (Screenshot)

Shin Bet head Nadav Argaman also speaks, saying that the outcome of the operation could change the reality of the conflict, “depending on what will happen from now on.”

“The rules of the game have changed, and what was is not what will be,” Argaman says. “The Hamas of before this conflict is nothing like the Hamas of the day after.”

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