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Israeli military reportedly prepares for potential conflict with Arab-Israeli citizens during wartime

Israel’s military confrontation with Hamas in May 2021 led to riots by Israeli Arabs – as well as Jewish citizens – particularly in cities with a mixed Arab and Jewish population

Police officers clash with Arab protesters in the mixed city of Ramla during a protest over tensions in Jerusalem, May 10, 2021. (Photo: Yossi Aloni/Flash90)

The Israel Defense Forces are reportedly preparing for a potential confrontation with radicalized Israeli Arab citizens during wartime, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed to a group of lawmakers.

“The IDF is preparing for that,” Netanyahu reportedly told the Israeli politicians. “There are 10 military divisions training for that. True, that is not enough, but they are preparing for such a day,” he added.

The IDF’s preparation for such a confrontation is allegedly intended to counter any potential ‘fifth-column’ elements among Israeli Arabs who violently side with the enemy during wartime.

During Operation Guardian of the Walls in May 2021, Israel’s military confrontation with the Gaza-based terror group Hamas, led to riots by Israeli Arabs – as well as Jewish citizens – in Israeli cities, particularly those with a mixed Arab and Jewish population, such as Acre, Ramla and Lod.

At the time, Netanyahu stated that riots inside Israel constituted a grave threat to the country’s security.

“There is no greater threat now than these riots,” warned the prime minister.

Arab-Israeli citizens number approximately 2 million and constitute about 20% of the Jewish state’s total population. Iran and its terrorist proxies Hezbollah and Hamas have successfully radicalized a minority of Arab-Israelis against the Jewish state.

At an emergency conference in November 2022, Akko Mayor Shimon Lankri warned that Israel could face a real risk of civil war between its Jewish and Arab citizens.

“Whoever hasn’t understood it yet: We are on the brink of civil war in the State of Israel, and not Haredim [ultra-Orthodox] against secular Jews, but rather Arabs against Jews. This is the next civil war. This will happen to us soon,” Lankri cautioned at the time.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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