In response to a surprise attack by Hamas, the Palestinian armed group, on Saturday morning, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) launched a series of airstrikes targeting Hamas targets in Gaza. IDF spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari stated that Hamas terrorists had infiltrated Israeli territory from land, sea, and air. The IDF reported that more than 2,200 rockets had been fired from Gaza, with Hamas claiming to have used over 5,000 projectiles in just the first 20 minutes of the attack. Rocket sirens were heard in various Israeli cities, including Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Beersheba, and Ashkelon.
According to the Times of Israel, clashes between IDF troops and Hamas militants took place in several towns, including Kfar Aza, Sderot, Sufa, Nahal Oz, Magen, Be’eri, and the IDF’s Re’im military base. The IDF announced a state of readiness for war following the attack and warned that the Hamas terror organization would face severe consequences. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant approved the call-up of reservists in response to the actions by Hamas.
Tragically, at least six people were killed in Israel on Saturday. Four individuals lost their lives in missile strikes in the town of Kuseife, and another individual was killed in the Gderot area. The head of Sha’ar HaNegev town, Ofir Liebstein, was also fatally shot in a gunfight with Hamas militants. The local administration described Liebstein as a hero who lost his life defending the town during the terrorist attack.
Medical institutions across Israel reported that over 200 people were wounded, many in serious condition, as a result of the ongoing conflict. Disturbing videos circulated online throughout the day, allegedly showing IDF troops being killed and captured by Hamas fighters. Additionally, there were social media posts featuring a burning Israeli tank and Palestinians celebrating the seizure of a US-made Humvee military vehicle from the IDF. However, the authenticity of these videos has yet to be verified.
The escalation of violence between Hamas and Israel has attracted international attention and concern. The conflict has prompted diplomatic efforts to de-escalate tensions and find a peaceful resolution. Efforts to broker a ceasefire continue as the situation in the region remains volatile.
In conclusion, in response to a surprise attack by Hamas, the IDF launched airstrikes targeting Hamas in Gaza. Rocket attacks from Gaza have caused casualties and significant damage in Israeli cities. Clashes between IDF troops and Hamas militants have occurred in several towns, resulting in loss of life and injuries. The conflict has attracted international attention and efforts to achieve a ceasefire are ongoing.