Israel Warns Citizens to Return Home from Sinai Immediately Due to High Level Terror Alert
Israel’s National Security Council issued its highest-level terror threat (“red-very high-concrete threat based on reliable intelligence”) for the Sinai and urged all Israelis to leave immediately and return to Israel. It urged Israelis with family members visiting Sinai to contact loved ones and tell them to cut short their visits. According to the Israel terror threat, it is related to the Gaza-based Army of Islam, which Israel claims is influenced by “global jihad” (whatever that means) and a terror cell affiliated with it is operating in Sinai and seeking to kidnap Israeli tourists.
In its background to the alert, Israel merely says that it “attacked” Army of Islam “activist” Muhammad Nimnim in Gaza, when in actuality it murdered him. The warning claims that Nimnim was involved in the “development” of the attack. Time Magazine further credits Egyptian intelligence with capturing some of Nimnim’s cell in Sinai and says the Egyptians tipped off Shabak about his involvement leading to the hit. It should be noted that though Time does not acknowledge a source, it clearly is an Israeli intelligence source and therefore not reliable (but interesting nevertheless).
Time further states that the target in Sinai was a military-intelligence base, El Gorah, which houses the Multi-National Force and Observers. Interestingly, the commander of Forces’ Cairo office told the magazine he knew of no threat to the base. How would the senior staff member of the Force not know of a threat yet both Egyptian and Israeli intelligence would?
In earlier Shabak-IDF claims after his killing, it made the grandiose statement that Army of Islam also intended to hit American targets, which led a Haaretz reporter to ask whether Israel had consulted the U.S. before killing Nimnim. When the IDF spokesperson did not deny the reporter’s question outright, it led many to believe Israel wanted to create the impression that the U.S. approved of the hit. Later, the IDF denied it had received American approval. And the U.S. government never issued any statement, which I found slightly odd.
The current Israeli NSC terror warning mentions no American target at all. One wonders why they’ve changed their tune when the American component in the earlier reports was quite prominent.