Israel's enemies will target Israel Defense Forces headquarters in Tel Aviv with long-range missiles to spark the next war, IDF Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz said on Tuesday.
Speaking at a conference at Bar-Ilan University, Gantz warned that Israel's next conflict could start in a number of ways, including "a precision missile attack on the General Staff building at the heart of the IDF headquarters in Tel Aviv, or a cyberattack on a site providing essential services to Israelis. Stoplights would malfunction, banks would shut down."
He said one scenario could involve an IDF patrol vehicle driving over a hidden roadside bomb in the Golan Heights. The first vehicle to respond would then be hit by an anti-tank missile, and three soldiers, including a battalion commander, would be abducted in the attack, which could be carried out by one of the many global jihad groups or other hostile organizations, Gantz noted.
"This future terrorist organization -- be it a familiar one or not -- could immediately spark an engagement on multiple fronts," Gantz said. "Following the Israeli response, Hezbollah could begin firing salvos of rockets at communities in the Galilee, while simultaneously sending forces to attempt to infiltrate towns in the Golan Heights. The accuracy of Hezbollah's missiles will be much higher [than in the 2006 Second Lebanon War], and now if Hezbollah wants to hit a specific target anywhere in Israel, it will know how to do it. Rocket attacks on Eilat could be carried out by terror groups working with Hezbollah. At the same time, hundreds of Hamas activists could rush the Erez crossing or toward the IDF's northern Gaza brigade ... Sounds like fiction? I am not so sure."
Gantz provided an even grimmer example: "A tunnel rigged with explosives that detonates under a kindergarten, or an assault on a community near the fence. The attack could be combined with any of these, and there are many more possibilities that come to mind."
The recent defense budget cuts have forced the IDF to evolve and adapt, according to Gantz.
"The slimmer defense budget, which brought down cuts on us that we have never known, has accelerated the rate of change and forced us to take risks that I hoped would allow us to fare better," he said.
"In light of the budget which was decided, we must adapt faster than we anticipated, yet still, this situation forces us to secure our resources."