(JNS.org) Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday noted the relative quiet over the last two years since the 2014 summer war between Israel and Hamas, during a ceremony marking the completion of a structural reinforcement project for homes in Sderot.
"While we cannot shape the strategic environment in which we live, we do have possibility of achieving deterrence against our enemies and, to the extent that it proves necessary, to inflict significant damage on the infrastructures of terror," Netanyahu said at the ceremony in Sderot, which is less than a mile from Gaza and has been frequently targeted by Hamas Qassam rocket attacks since 2001.
"Our policy is to respond vigorously to any violation – no matter how small – of the calm, and you see this, and make it clear to those on the other side that the rules of the game have changed," Netanyahu said.
"Quiet here equals quiet in Gaza. Attacking us will lead to ruin and destruction for Hamas, Islamic Jihad and whoever tries to attack us from the other side of the fence. We will respond in strength to any attempt to attack our communities and our citizens."
Netanyahu added that structurally reinforcing the residences was a "lifesaving step" but does not substitute Israel's "offensive striking power."
"I am constantly hearing about what Hamas is doing but I know what we are doing. I know what we are planning. I know how we are organizing. I know but I do not intend to tell you."