Low chances of war in 2017, IDF estimates

The IDF does not foresee a major military conflict in the coming year, but remains poised for any new developments. 

According to IDF assessment, the Middle East chaos has weakened Israel’s enemies, creating a low probability of war with the Jewish state in 2017, a senior Israeli military officer explained.

IDF intelligence concluded that neither the Lebanon-based Hezbollah nor Hamas in the Gaza Strip are interested in attacking Israel and sparking intense fighting at this time, he said.

Speaking Wednesday on condition of anonymity, as per military protocol, the officer was sharing an official annual year-end intelligence assessment.

Hezbollah is mired in the Syrian civil war, while Hamas has lost much of its support, including funding, from outside sources, he added.

Still, he cautioned that an unexpected “dynamic of escalation” could always occur, sparking renewed conflict.

Israel fought a month-long war with Hezbollah in 2006 and has since waged three wars with Hamas, the last being Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, responding to ongoing terror attacks on Israeli civilians.

While the IDF does not expect war in the near future, it routinely drills for a multiple-front confrontation and is constantly working to upgrade its multi-layered defensive systems.

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By: World Israel News Staff and AP