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Tuesday, February 20, 2024

The Hamas Leader Who Studied Israel’s Psyche—and Is Betting His Life on What He Learned

The Hamas Leader Who Studied Israel’s Psyche—and Is Betting His Life on What He Learned

Yahya Sinwar drove a strategy to exploit Israel’s willingness to trade Palestinian prisoners for hostages; Gaza leader spent two decades in prison in Israel

When Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar was imprisoned in Israel more than a decade ago, he explained to an Israeli official a theory now central to the war in Gaza. 

Sinwar said that what Israel considers its strength—that most Israelis serve in the army and soldiers hold a special status in society—is a weakness that can be exploited, said Yuval Bitton, who spent time with Sinwar as the former head of the Israel Prison Service’s intelligence division.

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