34 days into the war and heavy ground operations in Gaza continues. To date, 35 of our soldiers have been killed since we began the invasion.
Israel is now in full control of the northern half of Gaza and no rockets are being fired from there ant longer. Sporadic rockets continue to be launched fron southern Gaza.
Israel forces captured a Hamas stronghold in western Jabaliya after 10 hours of fighting, the IDF said earlier today. Troops from the 933rd Nahal Infantry Brigade battled Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorists both above and below ground at the site in northern Gaza, known as Outpost 17. “The troops completed the takeover of the outpost after 10 hours of fighting, during which they eliminated terrorists, captured many weapons and uncovered terrorist tunnel shafts, including a shaft located near a kindergarten and leading to an extensive underground route,” according to the IDF.
Troops also found “significant” operational plans, the army said. In addition, the IDF killed the head of Hamas’s anti-tank missile unit in central Gaza, the army announced on Thursday. To date 130 terror tunnels have also been destroyed.
There are also ongoing negotiations in process among Qatar, Egypt and the US to free 16 hostages in exchange for a 1-2 day pause in the fighting. Israel hs indicated it needs to bring all of the captives home not just 16 and is not in favor of such a pause.
Tens of thousands of desperate civilians, some waving white flags, have fled the northern Gaza Strip this week. The United Nations estimated that through Tuesday, 40,000 people had walked out of northern Gaza along the only route south, after Israeli officials told residents of the besieged enclave to evacuate “for their own safety,” and 15,000 more streamed out on Wednesday. Israel has created this safe passage route and provides protection for those who choose to use it.
As regards what happens after the war ends, US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said Wednesday that Gaza should be unified with the West Bank under the Palestinian Authority once the war is over, offering a strong signal about what the United States sees as its preferred endgame in the fight between Israel and Hamas. The remarks by Mr. Blinken on Wednesday reflect a deep anxiety on the part of President Biden and his aides inside the White House as the conflict enters its second month. Seeking an alternative to open-ended war in the Middle East, Blinken added: “These (post war arrangements) must include the Palestinian people’s voices and aspirations at the center of post-crisis governance in Gaza,” he said. “It must include Palestinian-led governance and Gaza unified with the West Bank under the Palestinian Authority.” Israel’s leadership gas said that Israel must be responsible for security in Gaza for some period after Hamas is vanquished.
Earlier today Rose Lubin, a 20 year old Israeli Border Policewoman from Atlanta who was stabbed to death by a terrorist here in Jerusalem earlier this week was laid to rest in a moving ceremony at the Military Cemetery on Mount Herzl. Worth watching here…..
Another piece that warrants a look see is the presentation by Michal Cutler-Wunsch, Israel’s Special Envoy for Combating Anti-Semitism which took place at the United Nations earlier this week……
May the enemies of Israel be vanquished and the evil in the world receive its just reward.