Many terrorists released in the Shalit deal have returned to violence against Israelis, thus reducing the chances for future prisoner releases of this kind as part of any peace negotiations.
The latest arrests of Hamas terrorists in Judea and Samaria responsible for the murder of Malachi Rosenfeld in June have reignited the debate surrounding the release of captive in exchange for terrorists held in Israeli prisons.
Ahmad Najar, a resident of Jordan who was released in the Shalit deal, was labeled by Shin Bet (Israel’s Security Agency) as the mastermind behind the attack on Rosenfeld. Najar served eight years in an Israeli prison for his involvement in previous terror attacks that killed six Israelis.
In 2011, when IDF soldier Gilad Shalit was released in exchange for 1,027 terrorists, Shin Bet head Yoram Cohen said Israel could contend with the threat posed by the released terrorists.
However, six Israelis have since been murdered by terrorists released in the Shalit deal.
One of the most memorable attacks was the murder of Police commander Baruch Mizrahi, 47, a father of five who was shot on April 14, 2014, while traveling with his family to celebrate Passover. His wife was wounded in the attack. The terrorist who murdered him had been sentenced to life in prison for murdering Arabs suspected of collaborating with Israel. He was released from prison in October 2011 as part of the Shalit prisoner exchange and was subsequently rearrested on May 7 by the Israel Police’s elite counter-terrorism unit.
One of the terrorists involved in the murder of Danny Gonen last month was arrested last week. He, too, was released during the Shalit deal.
In total, 39 of the released terrorists have been re-arrested and sent back to prison for terror activity. Several others have been arrested and await sentencing.
Israel’s Ynet reports that security officials are hesitant to discuss the matter. However, none dispute the fact that the Shalit deal has increased motivation within Hamas to abduct Israelis, particularly soldiers and minors.
There were dozens of attempts by terrorists to abduct Israelis since the Shalit deal, but most were foiled by security forces.
By: Max Gelber, United with Israel
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