Hamas' forces and officials in the Gaza Strip are the ones guiding the lone wolf attacks that began early Thursday, The Jerusalem Post's sister publication Maariv's military correspondent Tal Lev Ram told Radio 103FM Thursday evening.
"What we have here are 30 hours of incidents in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip after a week that did not have an unusual extent of riots," Lev Ram said, adding that "the focus tonight was in Jenin which is turning into a battlefield."
Early Thursday morning, clashes erupted in Jenin after the IDF entered the northern West Bank city in order to demolish the house of a member of the cell that killed Rabbi Raziel Shevach near the outpost of Havat Gilad in 2018.
Two Palestinians were killed, including a member of the Palestinian Authority's security forces. "A demolition of a terrorist's house, which is not unusual, led to fire toward the snipers unit with the incident ending with one casualty," Lev Ram said.
"There is a guiding hand that is constantly working [on making] the area 'heat up,'" Lev Ram continued, saying that the ones guiding the attacks are Hamas' forces and officials in the Gaza Strip.
Lev Ram added that "whoever eventually decided to carry out a car ramming attack made the decision on his own. We see this wheel starting to turn in the last 30 hours." Before the publication of US President Donald Trump's "Deal of the Century," Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said in a closed Fatah meeting that there is a need for escalation.
Abbas called for the Palestinian public to take the streets and join riots and public disturbances, instructing the authority's security forces to allow the rioters to confront Israeli troops.
Lev Ram said that "we can already say that there is another casualty in Jenin following IDF fire probably caused by a misidentification." The Palestinian Authority's leading Fatah movement published a video showing a Palestinian officer collapsing after being shot from outside a police station.
On Wednesday, 17-year-old Mohammed al-Haddad was shot dead in Bab a-Zawiyeh, in the area between the IDF-controlled H2 and Palestinian-controlled H1 areas of Hebron. According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, the rioter was shot while hurling Molotov cocktails toward the forces. Palestinian sources claim the teenager was unarmed.
"The scenario we fear is terrorist attacks," Lev Ram said. "As of now, we have not seen the Palestinians joining riots or a large-scale Intifada [Arabic for uprising] but we have to wait and see," he added, saying that the Israel has already seen tense days that began bad and ended up worse.
In September 2000, growing tensions that followed the failed Camp David Peace Summit broke out into violent clashes between Palestinian rioters and Israeli forces after then-opposition leader Ariel Sharon visited the Temple Mount. One Israeli and seven Palestinians were killed in the confrontations.
On September 30, 2000, French TV channel France 2 published a video showing 12-year-old Muhammad al-Durrah being shot by the IDF in the former settlement of Netzarim in the Gaza Strip, dying soon after.
Durrah's reported death led to an escalation of the violence, with Arab Israelis taking the streets to protest the IDF's response to Palestinian riots. During the protests, 13 demonstrators were killed, including 12 Arab Israelis and one Palestinian.
According to the Or Commission of Inquiry established following the events, then-prime minister Ehud Barak instructed the security forces to open fire at protesters blocking highways in the North.
On October 12, 2000, two IDF soldiers that mistakenly entered the city of Ramallah were taken to a local police station and lynched by a mob of Palestinian rioters, marking the start of the Second Intifada.103FM contributed to this report via Maariv.