Over 900 dead, 2,600 wounded Israelis, cabinet to approve war ops Tuesday

 There were over 900 dead and 2,600 wounded Israelis mostly from Hamas’ invasion of Israel’s South and also from some of its rocket fire at press time, with the security cabinet set to meet on Tuesday to approve operational plans against Gaza.

By early Monday, the Gaza corridor was finally clear of Hamas invaders who had penetrated on Saturday morning in numbers ranging between hundreds to thousands.

Despite the corridor being clear, the IDF said there were still isolated small numbers of attempted invaders throughout the day, but that all were immediately thwarted due to tens of thousands and constantly increasing numbers of IDF soldiers who have come to reinforce the area.

Most Israelis were also evacuated from the Gaza corridor by Monday night, though some insisted on remaining in their home areas.

Also, the IDF said that the call-up of over 300,000 reservists was the largest ever, as a senior diplomatic source said that the IDF operation in Gaza would eliminate Hamas’ capability to fight.

IDF Chief-of-Staff (Lt.-Gen.) Herzi Halevi said that, “this started poorly” for Israel, but “will end much worse for the other side” - Hamas.

Israel directs citizens to stock up

The Home Front Command issued recommendations to the whole country to get special supplies in the event that civilians might need to spend up to 72 hours in their safe rooms or bomb shelters in the event of heightened rocket fire by Hamas or Hezbollah as the war heats up.

Hamas rocket attacks on Tuesday struck communities in the Jerusalem area, including Har Adar and Beitar Illit as well as Ashkelon and other Gaza areas communities, leading to casualties in a small number of cases.

The IDF refused to provide updated numbers of air strikes on Monday night, but the number was 1,149 on Monday morning and there had been many waves of air strikes since then, suggesting the number would have risen quite a bit.

In addition, the IDF said that the pace of air strikes was now five times that of IDF air strikes on Hezbollah during the S2066 Second Lebanon War.

Specifically, the IDF noted large volumes of air strikes in Ramia in Gaza, which it said was a significant staging area for the invasion of southern Israel.

On Monday morning, the IDF had estimated it had killed at least 800 Hamas terrorists, but the numbers may have risen to 1,000, as well as thousand wounded by Monday night.

The IDF does not yet have a breakdown of how many of the wounded Gazans are fighters versus civilians, but in 2014 it was about 50% each, and in more recent wars the percentage of fighters has been much higher.

IDF confirms Iran in the picture, but rejects 'mastermind' idea

IDF Chief Spokesman Brig. Gen. Daniel Hagari confirmed that Iran is generally in the picture and broadly supporting Hamas, but poured cold water on the idea that the Islamic Republic was the mastermind of the current invasion or that it gave the order for the exact timing.

Earlier Monday, the six areas of ongoing or new fighting in the Gaza corridor included: Kfar Gaza (7 terrorists identified), Beeri (70 terrorists identified, mostly killed now, but some have hidden inside Yishuv houses), Nirim (6 identified), Alumim (4 identified), Shaar Hanegev (3 identified), Nir Oz (4 identified), and Hulit (4 identified.)

In most of the six situations, the terrorists by Monday morning had been caught or confronted before they entered the village in question, and the fighting is near the village, but not within, though there were exceptions.

The IDF admitted that it has been slower to fully clean out the Gaza corridor of Hamas invaders and to seal the border from continuing invaders than it had hoped, with an original goal of early to mid-Sunday.

Currently, the strategy is to move not only a huge volume of troops to the border, but also a larger number of tanks to project power.

In addition, the IDF continues to encounter and destroy attack tunnels within Israeli territory which its vaunted billion dollar technologies had failed to locate prior to the invasion.

A mix of aerial lookouts, massive new troops in the area plus those technologies are being used to locate missed tunnels, but the situation is still fluid.

Top IDF and US military officials are in regular touch and US forces in the region are now ready to both enhance IDF intelligence tracking of potential drone threats from Iranian proxies around the region, and potentially even to use American forces to shoot down such threats.

Earlier Monday, the main focus of the air strikes had been: Beit Hanoun, Shejiya (both Sunday) and Jabalya around 1:00 a.m. Monday and over the entire Gaza Strip in recent hours.

Most of the strikes are destroying Hamas' fighting capabilities as opposed to top commanders who had gone into hiding before the invasion.

Source: https://www.jpost.com/israel-news/article-767460


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