According to Channel 2 News reporter Ehud Yaari, he is charismatic but not a great speaker. He hates the media and is a hard liner. Since being released in the Shalit deal, he noted that Yayha Sanwar has worked his way to the top of the Hamas terror organization. In Yaari’s editorial, he asks, who is he and what does his appointment indicate for the next conflict?

Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

Within weeks after his release from jail in the Shalit deal, Channel 2 news columnist Ehud Yaari noted that Yayha Sanwar, age 55, became the strongest man in the Hamas terror group. He claims that everyone in Gaza including Ismail Haniyeh and Mohammed Deif eventually fell under his command so there was no surprise that he came out number 1 in the elections that were held in the coastal strip.

According to Yaari, Sanwar rarely appears in the media and is not a great public speaker. However, he is charismatic and is quite rough. He claims that he is not the type that raises his voice.  He silences and argues with others in a whisper. He reads a lot, his Hebrew is reasonable and he is pretty familiar with Israel.

However, Yaari emphasizes that Sanwar is hardline regarding his beliefs. He is focused upon the next round of violence and is working to improve Hamas’ capabilities. According to him, he also believes although he won’t say it openly that Hamas lost Operation Protective Edge and therefore Hamas needs to look for new ways to attack Israel aside from improving their missile capabilities.

Yaari claims that also the tunnels do not appear to be the main issue that will test his rule. According to him, he is terrified by the fact that in Gaza, there are 100,000 homeless people and this together with the demonstrations following the power outages pose a real threat to his terror regime. For this reason, Yaari claims that he prefers to remain in the shadows. Everyone knows what his position is but he is not required to make his presence known.  He claims that Haniyeh will absorb the criticism and Sanwar will instruct him how to act.