Why has ISIS not attacked Israel?Watch
- Political Ambassador
In all seriousness, groups like ISIS and al Qaeda have often debated among themselves about whether to attack far enemies like the US, the West and other more powerful foes. Or focus on weaker local enemies such as the Iraqi state and build up a local power base that will allow for more powerful attacks later. ISIS is focusing on the local for now.
IT ALL MAKES SENSE.
put your tin foil hat back on OP
ISIS are far more professional than other Islamic terrorist group the world has seen, so are not going to pick their first fight with an enemy they cannot beat. Like proper strategists, they pick territory with weak governance and ineffectual opposition, and target their area, gain it, dig in and develop a power base. Hence why they chose war-torn Eastern Syria and Sunni disaffected Western Iraq.
I imagine Israel would be on part of their long term strategy, but they know they need to consolidate and expand their power base in weak territory before they can pick fights with the big players.
Second would be the fact that Israel has the finest military in the region and the support of the United States in defending itself against any existential threat. Part of what keeps IS going is their mindset and single-minded pursuit of victory or martyrdom. I suspect that they understand, based on the way Israel reacts to even the hint of a threat, that the Israelis, too, feel as though they're perpetually backed into a corner and that they'll fight to the bitter end to hold onto their land.
Third: it's just not a priority. IS, unlike a lot of terror groups, has always had the sense to focus on the 'near enemy' first and then go for the 'far enemy.' There's literally no point in them attacking Israel before they've neutralised Jordan or Lebanon -- not to mention that their situation in the north of Iraq isn't looking too good so it's a choice between defending the land that they already have and trying to gain more. Sure, they might send the odd suicide bomber and make full use of their propaganda arm to terrify people and try to remain relevant to people who're not directly under threat from them (as Iraqis and Syrians are), but I can't see a proper military operation against Israel happening any time soon.
Probably because they are a bit smarter than the average militant Islamic group, and have people within them who have directed strategy for an actual country, as opposed to the son of a rich construction magnate who directed operations from inside the cave in Afghanistan.
Check out this map (16 October 2015) to show what I'm talking about. See that tiny little black spot right down in the South West, along the border (not marked, but they're the borders with Israel and Jordan)? That's the ISIS linked group in question. The only ISIS presence near Israel.