Yoav Gallant, the Israeli defence minister, warned troops assembled at the Gaza border on Thursday that they would soon see the Palestinian territory “from inside,” possibly indicating that the anticipated ground invasion aimed at destroying Hamas is drawing near.
More airstrikes against Gaza were launched by Israel on Thursday in response to the Hamas gunmen’s Oct. 7 massacre of 1,400 Israelis.
Following U.S. President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak paid a visit to show that the West supports the fight against Hamas extremists.
Israel has imposed a siege on the 2.3 million residents of the Gaza Strip and blasted the territory with missiles, resulting in thousands of casualties and more than a million displaced persons.
Residents of the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza were shown in video footage acquired by Reuters digging with their bare hands inside a destroyed structure to release a young boy and girl trapped beneath masonry. Also taken out was a man’s body.
Egypt has been making preparations to open its border crossing with Gaza to humanitarian aid, with the first delivery scheduled for this Friday. Since the start of the conflict and Israeli bombings on the Palestinian side of the border, the crossing has been closed.
“You can currently view Gaza from a distance, but soon you will be able to enter it. Gallant assured the men that the order will arrive. It was not anticipated that troops would invade while international leaders were present.
The fight, according to Gallant, will be fierce and drawn out.
Following Gallant’s remarks, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu released a video of himself pledging victory alongside troops close to the border.
Families of some Israeli hostages taken prisoner in Gaza pleaded Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, to free them and urged the Israeli force to take their security into account while it hunted down Hamas.
According to military sources cited by Israel’s public broadcaster Kan, 200 people are believed to be detained, including 20 persons over the age of 60 and 30 minors and young children.
After the Egyptian and Palestinian leaders’ summit in Jordan was postponed due to the Gaza hospital explosion, which Palestinians claimed was caused by an Israeli air strike but which Israel claims was actually the result of a botched militant rocket launch, Biden returned to the United States overnight from his brief visit to Israel. Biden supported the Israeli story.
The number of fatalities from the hospital explosion was pegged at “probably at the low end of the 100 to 300 spectrum,” according to an unclassified U.S. intelligence analysis reviewed by Reuters on Thursday, although the estimate was qualified by the caveat that it might change. Only minor structural damage, according to the report, has been seen at the hospital.
According to Palestinian sources, the explosion at the Al-Ahli al-Arabi hospital late on Tuesday killed 471 people.
With the exception of securing agreements from Israel and Egypt for 20 trucks, Biden’s efforts to deliver aid to Gaza met with only patchy success. According to two Egyptian security sources, equipment was delivered over the crossing on Thursday to rebuild the roads on the Gaza side. In Egypt, there were more than 100 trucks awaiting.
Concerns about the conflict expanding have increased as a result of the bombing and impending ground invasion.
After the greatest escalation in border warfare in 17 years, the Iranian-backed Lebanese militant group Hezbollah claimed to have fired rockets into an Israeli outpost in the town of Manara on Thursday. In response, Israel reportedly opened fire with artillery.
At least 20 rockets and an anti-tank missile were fired from Lebanon, according to the Israeli military.
The Palestinian Red Crescent reported on Thursday that eight Palestinians were murdered after clashes with Israeli forces in the refugee camp of Nur Shams in the West Bank city of Tulkarm.
On Al Jazeera, the spokesman for Hamas’ armed wing, Abu Obeida, called for anti-Israel protests on Friday across Arab and Muslim nations and stated that the organisation was ready for a protracted conflict with Israel.
‘THEY KILLED CHILDREN!’
Palestinian health officials report that more than 3,500 people have died and more than 12,000 have been injured as a result of Israeli attacks on Gaza.
Men hurried to the main Nasser hospital in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, after a bomb damaged a house, bringing dead and injured children in their arms, in ambulances, and on the back of a flatbed truck.
Doctors said that four individuals, mostly displaced children from northern Gaza who had been playing soccer in a lot next door, were murdered and numerous others injured.
A neighbour who witnessed the strike stated, “I saw body parts, dismembered children, what shall I describe to you?” Hassan Al-Hindi. “They killed children,” he sobbed.
The meagre truckloads of help for the 2.3 million people who are without access to food, water, fuel, and medical supplies were mocked by the people of Gaza.
El-Awad El-Dali, 65, spoke in front of destroyed homes and stated, “We seek nothing from Arab and other countries except to cease the savage attack on our dwellings.
A toddler’s pink cot was tossed on the ground, the windows of a clothes store were blown out, and there were damaged cars in another area where a shopping centre was reduced to ruins.
Rafat Al-Nakhala, who had arrived after adhering to Israel’s ultimatum for civilians to leave northern Gaza City, said, “I’m over 70 years old, I’ve lived through several wars, it’s never been like this.”
According to the UN, over half of Gaza’s population—one of the world’s densestly populated regions—has been rendered homeless and is still confined inside the territory.
Due to the Middle East’s outrage over their plight, it is more difficult for Biden and other Western leaders to mobilise Arab friends in order to stop the war from expanding.
Israelis were urged by Biden to control their anger before he left: “While you feel that rage, don’t let it consume you. In America, we were furious following 9/11. We erred, even though we sought justice and were successful in doing so.