While it is too soon to declare victory, Israel is making steady progress in its efforts to eradicate Hamas in Gaza. Only 8% of Israelis support returning control of Gaza to the Palestinians, the rest think it should remain under international (41%) or Israeli control (44%).
After ten hours of fighting, the Israeli Defense Force captured a major Hamas stronghold in the terror hotbed of West Jabaliya Thursday morning as forces pushed further into the heart of Gaza City where the terror group is believed to have its underground headquarters.
“The IDF death toll since the start of the Gaza ground operation rose to 35 on Thursday, as the military said another soldier had been killed in combat,” The Times of Israel reported.
A large number of terrorists from the Hamas ‘Nukhba force,’ who took part in the massacre of October 7, were eliminated, including the commander Ahmed Musa and the platoon commander Amr Alhandi, who had barricaded themselves in Western Jabaliya.
Israeli troops raised the Israeli flag on the beach at Gaza and sang the national anthem.
WATCH: IDF soldiers raise the Israeli flag and play Hatikvah (Israel’s national anthem), on the shores of Gaza beach! pic.twitter.com/hn6uP4mThb
— Arsen Ostrovsky (@Ostrov_A) November 9, 2023
Israel also captured the largest Mosque in Gaza and broadcast the song of prayer “Hear O Israel” so the hostages know they are coming.
Israel now controls Gaza city’s largest mosque, which has immensely powerful speakers. In order that all the hostages hear, even underground, and bolster their spirits that the IDF is coming, they blasted Shma Yisrael (Hear O Israel) from the minarets. pic.twitter.com/9Z66ecZRWE
— Bart Marcois (@bmarcois) November 8, 2023
IDF soldiers seized a Hamas military post and training compound in the heart of the Gaza Strip, seizing missiles, UAVs, maps, communication devices, mortars, attack drones, and technological assets and neutralizing approximately 30 terrorists. The soldiers raided the office of Muhammad Sinwar, brother of Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar.
“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.
The IDF killed the head of Hamas’s anti-tank missile unit in central Gaza, Ibrahim Abu Maasib, the army announced on Thursday, who was responsible for cross-border attacks against citizens of Israel and IDF soldiers with anti-tank missiles.
The Israeli Navy has killed about 200 terrorists, including many Hamas naval commandos, since the beginning of the operation. Naval vessels have targeted hundreds of terrorist targets, including observation posts, anti-tank missile teams, enemy vessels, as well as Hamas infrastructure and bases, JNS reports. Israel Navy’s special operations unit Shayetet 13 has carried out commando raids in the Gaza Strip as well.
While Hamas remains holed up in underground tunnels, they may have shoveled their own grave: A simple solution to avoid protracted fighting in booby-trapped tunnels would be to flood them with water from the Mediterranean, as Jeff Goodson writes on RealClearDefense. While this would put any hostages held underground at risk, the flooding could be done slowly to force the terrorists out with their hostages, however, providing a neat solution to the hostage dilemma as well.
44% of Israelis want Israel to remain in control of Gaza after war, while 41% of Israelis want Gaza to be under international control. Only 8% of Israelis support putting Palestinian Authority back in control of Gaza.