For the first time since the beginning of the war, Hamas Launched a rocket toward the Arava region.
Nasrallah issued his much-anticipated speech on Friday. As expected, he made threats toward Israel, but he did not declare an exacerbation of the conflict, together with a statement that keeps options open for a wider conflict. He distanced himself and Iran from the attack of October 7. He sent a stern warning to the US not to intervene. (see Nasrallah’s speech below).
Today commemorates the 4th. week since Hamas’ horrific attack on Israel. In the north, the weekend was characterized by relatively few attacks initiated by Hezbollah. Today, Hezbollah initiated several attacks on the northern border in the morning hours, the IDF responded by counterattacking Hezbollah terrorists and infrastructures.
In the south, the IDF attack continues in full force. Israeli forces have destroyed Hamas defense lines and are maneuvering inside Hamas’ fortified military strongholds, killing terrorists and acquiring invaluable intelligence. During the past day, there have been multiple attempted attacks on IDF troops from tunnel shafts and military facilities in northern Gaza. IDF troops deployed in the region killed terrorists discovering Hamas weaponry, and discovering subterranean shafts used for terror objectives. IDF troops clashed with 15 terrorists in the northern Gaza Strip yesterday, killing six of them, and directed tank fire to destroy three Hamas observation posts.
– So far, according to the IDF since Saturday morning Oct. 7, 1,400 Israelis were murdered and 5,600 Israelis wounded. 341 IDF soldiers were killed in action. 241 confirmed abducted civilians and IDF soldiers, including a total of 35 children, 10 of whom are below the age of 5, and 18 elderly persons who are 75 years of age or older. many more are still missing. Since the beginning of hostilities, 9,000+ rockets have been launched into Israel. To date, an estimated 250,000 Israelis are refugees in their own country, being compelled to leave their homes in the communities and towns adjacent to the northern frontier and the Gaza Strip, and have since been placed in different locations across the country.
Friday: Nasrallah’s speech:
He denied that he knew anything about the Al-Aqsa Flood (Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups named the Oct. 7 attack operation “Al-Aqsa Flood”) and tried to justify the atrocities. He continues to say that he salutes Iraq and Yemen for entering the campaign and that the victory of the Palestinians is in the interest of all the countries of the region and first and foremost in the national interest of Lebanon. Nasrallah clarifies that Hezbollah entered the campaign a long time ago and that the limited participation can expand. He goes on to say: “What is happening on the border with Lebanon did not happen in 2006 either, everyone is exposed to daily attacks – Israeli outposts and settlements. Attacks against tanks, as well as destroying soldiers and installations. Hezbollah is waging a real war on the border and those on the border are aware of it. Hezbollah has managed to reduce the scope of the forces attacking in Gaza because what is happening on the Lebanese border obliges the enemy (Israel) to double its strength on the (Lebanese) border”. He sees the evacuation of the Israeli settlements as an achievement. “All options on the Lebanese front are open – we will take advantage of them at the time we choose”.
Nasrallah’s words can be interpreted in two options:
Firstly, he is afraid of entering into a large-scale war with Israel, but is obliged to take part in the campaign and therefore maintains low-intensity fighting.
Secondly, following Hezbollah’s conduct in the past year, Nasrallah wants to drag Israel into war – so that he will not be accused of initiating it, similar to Hamas. Internal Lebanese legitimacy is important to him mainly in his base and therefore he will choose the timing that serves him best.
He himself acknowledges that the reality on the Lebanese border has changed – putting Israel in an impossible situation where, after completing the mission in Gaza, Israel will have to solve the problem in the north in order to allow the citizens of the north to return to their homes and live in security.
Friday was a relatively quiet day in the northern sector presumably, due to Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah’s speech.
At 13:22 terrorists launched an anti-tank missile from Lebanon at an IDF post in the Matat area. IDF forces responded with artillery fire at the source of the fire.
At 17:40 an IDF tank thwarted a Hezbollah attempt to shoot an anti-tank missile from Lebanese territory at the Yiftach region towards Israel, IDF forces responded attacking a Hezbollah military position.
Saturday, at 10:10 it was reported that the IDF attacked 2 terrorist squads in Lebanon. subsequently, an exchange of fire with Hezbollah took place on the border, which was heard along the northern region. At 11:00 an alarm was sounded in the Upper Galilee that a volley of rockets were launched toward Israel. The IDF struck a number of Hezbollah terror targets.
At 12:20 the IDF initiated a wave of attacks in southern Lebanon, sticking terrorist warehouses and Hezbollah military targets.
At 14:00 the IDF attacked additional Hezbollah targets on the border.
Gaza and Southern Israel:
IDF forces are surging forward with the ground offensive, eradicating Hamas defense lines around Gaza City. IDF troops have entered Gaza City, battling terrorists in their fortified strongholds. IDF forces are eliminating scores of terrorists in their way, not without unfortunate casualties. Scores of Hamas terrorists were killed in the IDF surge.
– IDF fighter jets, acting on exact ISA and IDF intelligence, assassinated Mustafa Dalul, commander of the Sabra Tel al-Hawa Battalion, who had played a key role in managing fighting against IDF troops in the Gaza Strip since the commencement of the war. Dalul held a number of posts in the Hamas battalion and brigade in Gaza City in recent years.
-In addition, IDF fighter jets and artillery directed by ground soldiers killed a number of terrorists operating against ground troops. During searches in the Beit Hanoun region, troops discovered weapons, intelligence material, an AK-47 rifle, a submachine gun, magazines, grenades, explosive devices, RPGs, communication equipment, and maps.
– Combat engineering personnel established access routes, cleared the area of explosive devices, and dismantled terror infrastructure and terrorist cells discovered in the Gaza Strip during ground operations. Furthermore, combat engineering and infantry forces identified and attacked military compounds used for terror planning and bases of operations.
– An IDF aircraft struck an ambulance containing Hamas terrorists that IDF forces identified as being used by a terror cell near their position in the combat zone. The strike killed a number of Hamas terrorist operatives using the ambulance for cover. The IDF holds unequivocal evidence that Hamas’ mode of operation is to transport terror personnel and weaponry in ambulances.
-Hamas continues to demonstrate its capabilities to launch missiles into Israel in recent days. Today, rockets were launched toward Israel. This afternoon, Hamas fired a rocket toward the Arava area, it was intercepted by the “Hetz” (Arrow) system. Hamas launched an Ayyash rocket that reached the northern city of Haifa on October 12th. Since the commencement of the war, the IDF has identified 10% (600+ missiles) of all missiles launched from within the Gaza Strip as having misfired, killing, wounding, or damaging Gaza residents. The Hamas terrorist organization uses the residents of the Gaza Strip as human shields and launches rockets from civilian infrastructure, areas, and buildings in the Gaza Strip.
It should be noted that under the Rules of War, Israel is under no obligation to supply for the needs of its enemy, Hamas.
Earlier today (Saturday), the IDF Arabic spokesperson declared that between 13:00-16:00, the Salah Al-Din route in the Gaza Strip will be available as a humanitarian route for residents of the northern Gaza Strip who had not yet gone southwards to leave for their own protection. Hamas terrorists launched mortars and anti-tank missiles against IDF troops that were securing this humanitarian route, forcing the IDF to cease their efforts to enable Gazans to safely leave the combat zones. The Hamas terrorist group exploited this humanitarian window that the IDF granted residents of the Gaza Strip to move southwards. This episode further illustrates that Hamas abuses the Gazan populace and hinders them from acting in the interest of their own safety. No IDF injuries were recorded.
The IDF revealed a recording with a healthcare official in Gaza attesting that Hamas holds the Shifa hospital’s fuel supplies for terrorist purposes.
– A senior White House official said on Saturday during a press briefing that the evacuation of wounded and foreign citizens from Gaza was delayed because Hamas attempted to evacuate some of its wounded fighters through the Rafah crossing to Egypt for treatment. This delayed the departure of American citizens from leaving the Gaza Strip.
-Rafah crossing on the border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip remains open for the flow of humanitarian aid carrying, medicine, medical equipment, and food, due to US pressure, Israel increased humanitarian aid, and according to UN statements, dozens of trucks cross into Gaza daily. The IDF emphasizes that all equipment is checked before entering the Strip.
In Israel, there are voices of protest against the insertion of humanitarian aid into Gaza, while Israel does not receive any humanitarian aid or information in return regarding the abductees and hostages held by Hamas. Nothing has been done despite repeated petitions to the Red Cross.
Terrorists shot toward soldiers without casualties.
– A White House spokeswoman stated that President Joe Biden remains optimistic about the possibility of releasing American and foreign citizens held by Hamas.
– Turkey Recalls Ambassador to Israel for Consultations. Turkish President Erdogan also said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can no longer be taken as counterpart for Turkey: “We have erased him.”
-In a press conference in Amman Jordan, attended by the American Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, the Jordanian Foreign Minister and the Egyptian Foreign Minister on the subject of the war in Gaza. Blinken once again emphasized the position of the United States and said that Israel has the right to defend itself, along with the need to avoid injuring innocent civilians in its attacks. Blinken also claimed that “humanitarian pauses” are critical in order to bring humanitarian aid into the Strip to get foreign nationals out of Gaza and to protect civilian lives. The US Secretary of State added that following the war, it is “clear” that the status quo between Israel and Hamas cannot remain intact. Blinken claimed that from the administration’s point of view, a ceasefire would allow Hamas to “regroup and repeat the attack it carried out on October 7th. To support the claim, he cited the interview, in which a senior Hamas official stated that the organization would carry out the attack “again and again and again”.