Sherwin Pomerantz

The 163rd Day of Israel’s War Against Hamas

Mossad Chief David Barnea is expected to arrive in Doha on Monday for hostage talks as Hamas has put a new proposal on the table, which appeared to revive the stalled negotiations. Barnea will meet with Qatari Prime Minister Mohammed al-Thani and Egyptian officials in an attempt to bridge the gaps between the positions of Israel and Hamas, a source told Reuters. The Security Cabinet was expected to meet today to determine Israel’s redlines.

“We will operate in Rafah. It will take a few weeks, but it will happen,” Prime Minister Netanyahu said at the start of the government meeting on Sunday. Some in the international community are trying to stop the war before all its goals are achieved. They do this by making false accusations against the IDF, against the Israeli government, and against the Prime Minister of Israel,” Netanyahu added.  “They do this by trying to bring about elections now, in the midst of the war. And they do this because they know that elections now will stop the war and paralyze the country for at least six months.”

In the north, IDF fighter jets struck a Hezbollah military compound in the area of al-Khyam in response to missiles fired toward Acre overnight, the IDF reported on Sunday. The attack was initially reported by the Hezbollah-affiliated al-Mayadeen agency on Sunday morning. In addition, IDF fighter jets struck a Hezbollah observation post in the area of Kafr Kila on Saturday night. IDF artillery also struck a site to remove a threat in the area of Maisat on Saturday night, the IDF added.

Yemen’s Houthi terrorist group has obtained a new hypersonic missile and upgraded its current arsenal with warheads, Russian state media RIA reported on Thursday.  Citing an unnamed Houthi official, the terrorist group told RIA that they had tested a hypersonic missile “with high lethality” and are planning to add it to their arsenal. “The group’s missile forces have successfully tested a missile that is capable of reaching speeds of up to Mach 8,” the official said, adding that the weapon runs on solid fuel; Yemen intends to begin manufacturing it for use during attacks in Krasnoye, Arabian Seas and the Gulf of Aden, as well as against targets in Israel.”

The first Friday of Ramadan saw over 80,000 Muslims come to pray at the Al Aksa Mosque in Jerusalem. Thankfully, the day passed quietly without incident.

The IDF on Friday denied claims by Hamas that troops had opened fire on crowds of civilians waiting for aid at Kuwait Square in Gaza City, saying that Israeli soldiers did not shoot at any stage during the incident and that Palestinian gunmen caused the casualties. According to the IDF’s probe, a convoy of 31 trucks containing food and other humanitarian aid made its way to northern Gaza on Thursday night. An hour before the convoy arrived at an IDF-established corridor, armed Palestinians opened fire while civilians were waiting for the aid trucks. “As aid trucks were entering [the corridor], the Palestinian gunmen continued to shoot as the crowd of Gazans began looting the trucks,” the IDF said, adding that it also identified several civilians who had been run over by the trucks. “A review of our operational systems and IDF troops found that no tank shelling, airstrike or gunfire was carried out toward the Gazan crowd in the area of the aid convoy.”

About the Author
Sherwin Pomerantz is a native New Yorker, who lived and worked in Chicago for 20 years before coming to Israel in 1984. An industrial engineer with advanced degrees in mechanical engineering and business, he is President of Atid EDI Ltd., a 32 year old Jerusalem-based economic development consulting firm which, among other things, represents the regional trade and investment interests of a number of US states, regional entities and Invest Hong Kong. A past national president of the Association of Americans & Canadians in Israel, he is also Former Chairperson of the Board of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies and a Board Member of the Israel-America Chamber of Commerce. His articles have appeared in various publications in Israel and the US.
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