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Talk shows in Israel devoted a special space to analyzing the personality of the head of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, with former politicians and security officials acknowledging that it was "a difficult figure in what they called the equation of fighting and negotiation," and Israeli media elaborated on Hamas' negotiating and military capabilities.

Israel's Channel 12 quoted Shalom Ben-Hanan, a former senior employee of the Shin Bet, as saying that Sinwar is "a violent man and a difficult negotiator" and is confident of his place in history before and certainly after the October <> attack, adding that "it would be good to hide him from the scene, so that we can continue with others."

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Former Shin Bet interrogation chief Micha Kobi said he interrogated Sinwar for 150 to 180 hours, adding, "This man hates us madly and he wants to cause us severe pain."

"I am not surprised that he gave the orders through his spokesmen to direct the Quds cell to carry out an operation," Kobe told Channel 14, expressing deep fear of his direct ties to resistance fighters in the West Bank.

Avichai Poaron, a former Likud MK who spoke to the same channel, criticized Sinwar's release, saying, "When we have information about a certain terrorist that he will definitely return to carry out operations of this kind, he should not be freed, let alone freed and sent to Gaza."

Regarding Hamas' military and negotiating capabilities, Ofer Shelah, a senior researcher at the Institute for National Security Studies, told Channel 13, "So far, Hamas has succeeded in hiding the kidnapped and transferring them from one place to another, and we heard testimonies from the kidnapped that Sinwar entered them and greeted them, which means that Hamas' control over the situation is still good."

"I say again when the IDF enters the south, the situation will be more difficult, and that with all due respect to the intelligence effort," the researcher said.

Zvi Yehezkili, an Arab affairs analyst for Channel 13, said Hamas's capabilities in the south are greater than in the north: "In the south of the Gaza Strip there is a different story. We know Hamas's military strength through its available forces that can operate now, and if I were to classify that force, I think 60 percent of Hamas's strength is in the south."

The analyst added that Hamas still maintains its strength and excels in the issue of negotiations over its detainees, and still has military power that will pose a problem if the army wants to operate in the southern Gaza Strip as it did in the north, assuming the end of work in the north, as he put it.

Source : Al Jazeera