IDF ground forces attack Gaza amid air, sea and artillery pounding. Half a million Gazans told to leave. Israelis around Gaza sent to shelters
DEBKAfile Special Report July 17, 2014
Israel air, sea and artillery pounded the Gaza Strip Thursday night, July 17, as IDF ground forces embarked on a ground attack, just announced by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. debkafile reports a softening-up operation to prepare for the entry of armored and infantry units. The IDF calls on the half million Gazans of southern towns of Khan Younes and Rafah to leave their homes for their own safety. Israelis living close to the Gaza border were advised to stay in bomb shelters.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 16, 2014
As the Israeli Cabinet delayed a decision on the next stage of the Gaza operation, the Hamas Wednesday, July 16, launched its heaviest barrage yet against Tel Aviv and its outlying towns, using M-75 missiles, after a relatively quiet night. debkafile: Israel faces a new dilemma after the breakdown of the Gaza truce: Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s expects it to lead the way in a knockout blow against Hamas, the Palestinian branch of his archenemy the Muslim Brothers. He would then collect the rewards. Israel wants Egypt to go first.
Unilateral Gaza ceasefire collapses. Israeli air strikes resume after dozens of Palestinian rockets in hours
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 15, 2014
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon ordered the Israeli Air Force to resume strikes over Gaza Tuesday afternoon, six hours after a ceasefire proposed by Egypt, accepted by Israel and rejected by Hamas, was due to go into effect. During those hours, dozens of Hamas rockets raked town after town and village after village. debkafile: The White House called off US Secretary of State John Kerry’s Cairo visit upon finding Tehran’s hand behind the rockets. Netanyahu goes on the air at 8 p.m. to explain what went wrong.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 14, 2014
As Israel’s Operation Defensive Edge ended its first week on July 14, military and intelligence experts were finding it hard to believe that Hamas had fired 1,000 rockets against Israel at random. They now conclude that Hamas was collecting operational data for itself, Iran and Hizballah to use in future conflicts – both about the weak points of Iron Dome and for guidance systems to lend their future rockets and mortars greater accuracy. Those experts advise Israel to send a small undercover special force into Gaza for intelligence missions to tip the scales in its favor.
First Hamas rocket hits Nahariya. All parts of Israel within range from Gaza on Day Six of IDF operation
DEBKAfile Special Report July 13, 2014
Nahariya, a small resort town near the Lebanese border, Sunday, July 13, had the unwanted distinction of becoming the northernmost Israeli town to be hit by a Hamas rocket 172 km away from Gaza, after taking Hizballah Katyushas in past conflicts. debkafile minimizes the prospect of a truce for now, due to the factors in play. Resuscitating the 2012 is not on because the lead players are departed or have lost their clout. Israel will stop bombing only when Hamas stops shooting. And Hamas believes it is on a roll.
Hamas rockets move north up to Haifa. Katyushas from Lebanon aimed at Metulla. Israeli artillery returns fire
DEBKAfile Special Report July 11, 2014
Another half a million Israelis came under rocket attack before dawn Friday, July 11, as Hamas again expanded its rocket radius up to Haifa, 150 km north of the Gaza Strip. A woman of 70 collapsed and died running for shelter after the Haifa siren. Two Katyusha rockets from Lebanon alerted Metullah, Israel’s northernmost town, early Friday. One landed between the Galilee town and Kfar Yuval. There were no casualties. debkafile: It came from a Beqaa village under Hizballah rule. IDF artillery returned the fire. Hamas rocket attacks resumed against southern Israel.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 11, 2014
Israel’s reliance on air strikes and intelligence mean Hamas’ underground bunkers and infrastructure remain untouched, and ground troops are the only way to take them out.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 11, 2014
Netanyahu fails to take advantage of a lack of international will to intervene in the Israel-Hamas fray, avoiding putting boots on the ground in Gaza as both sides escalate.
More than half of Israel under Hamas rocket attack - from Beersheba up to Greater Tel Aviv. No casualties. Hamas tries smuggling terrorists in by tunnels and sea
DEBKAfile Special Report July 8, 2014
First Hamas rockets were fired or intercepted Tuesday night, July 8, over Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Rishon Lezion, Givatayim, Raanana, Caesarea and Yavne. No casualties were reported, but a house was hit in N. Jerusalem. Hamas also made several attempts to smuggle terrorists into Israel for attacks: The IDF repelled a Hamas naval commando landing on Ashkelon’s Zikkim beach. Another group of terrorists tried to creep into Israel through a tunnel under the Kerem Shalom crossing. It was discovered when the tunnel blew up under an IDF post.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 7, 2014
Hamas broadened its massive rocket blitz Monday night, July 7 - edging further north and east to locales hitherto unscathed, after warning that its response to the deaths of seven operatives in Israeli air strikes would be “unprecedented.” Iron Dome intercepted at least 10 of the scores of rockets aimed at new urban areas – Lachish, Gan Yavneh, Kiryat Malachi, Beer Tuvia and Ashdod. The last rocket targeted Rehovot. Sirens sounded in the towns of Modiin, Ness Ziona, Gedera, Beit Shemes and Abu Ghosh indicating the approach of rockets.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 4, 2014
Netanyahu avoids direct engagement with Gaza, despite tensions running high in Jerusalem and the West Bank after Israeli kidnap-murder victims found and the possible revenge killing of a Palestinian in Jerusalem.
DEBKAfile Special Report July 3, 2014
Israeli defense officials passed word Thursday, July 3, that troop reinforcements had been sent to the Gaza Strip border amid intensifying Palestinian rocket barrages. debkafile: tanks and self-propelled artillery were certainly included. Another official said the Israeli war fleet opposite Gaza’s Mediterranean coast was also reinforced, and the Home Front Command had raised the national level of alert. The IDF anticipates Hamas wideneing its targets from the south further north. Broadcasting these movements warned Hamas to stop the rocket barrage or else the IDF would act.
DEBKAfile Special Report July 2, 2014
Israel’s security cabinet still looked undecided on July 2 after its third special session in two days to map out a response to the kidnapping-murder of Eyal Yifrach, Gil-Ad Shaer and Naftali Frenkel. But debkafile’s sources report a decision was in fact reached: to hold back from a major military operation in the Gaza Strip, while continuing the IDF’s anti-Hamas campaign on the West Bank - a course strongly urged by Egypt, Qatar and Jordan. The result: unbridled violence in Jerusalem after a Palestinian boy was murdered and 30 rockets launched from Gaza.
DEBKAfile Special Report July 1, 2014
The funerals of Eyal Yifrach, Gil-Ad Shaer and Naftali Frenkel, buried side by side, Tuesday, July 1, were a national event, drawing many tens of thousands of sorrowing sympathizers from every segment of the population. Their anguish over the senseless murders of the three boys, shortly after they were kidnapped on June 10 on their way home, was mixed with anger and demands for real retribution. The massed mourners will be expecting Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who joined them, to make good on his vow to make Hamas pay.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 5, 2014
The new Palestinian unity government leaves Hamas with major sources of power, including militia, weaponry, Gaza port, and civilian posts. Some worry Hamas is attempting to do what Hizballah has done in Lebanon and overtake Fatah and the PA.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 5, 2014
The US attempted to forge a new bloc of Turkey, Qatar, Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood to counterbalance Iranian power, but Morsi’s ouster as Egyptian president put an end to the short-lived alliance.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 23, 2014
The Palestinian Hamas is restored to the Iranian fold with the pledge of an annual allowance of $200 million, military assistance and advanced weapons, in return for a public avowal of Hamas support for Iran’s Syrian policy and Bashar Assad. The deal was secretly sealed Thursday, May 22 at a meeting in Doha between Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and Hamas’s politburo head Khaled Mashaal. It places Hamas squarely in the radical Iran-Syrian-Hizballah bloc and re-opens the Gaza Strip door to dominant Iranian influence.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 1, 2014
The collapse of peace talks and a Palestinian unity pact opened the West Bank door to Hamas and threatens Mahmoud Abbas’s rule with a coup like the one that brought Hamas to power in Gaza.
DEBKAfile Special Report April 24, 2014
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Wednesday night April 23 broke off peace talks with the Palestinians pending reassessment, after Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah signed a unity pact with Hamas in Gaza City. The US informed Abbas that if Hamas and Jihad Islami, both listed as terrorist organizations, were co-opted to the Palestinian Liberation Organization, Washington would discontinue recognition of the PLO. debkafile: By allying his Fatah with Hamas, Abbas places the entire Palestinian movement in opposition to Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
DEBKAfile Special Report March 13, 2014
The Israeli Air force struck 7 terrorist targets in southern Gaza Thursday, March 13, after a second round of rockets were fired at Ashkelon and Ashdod. The Jihad Islami reported a ceasefire was negotiated through Egypt. This was not confirmed by Israel. Earlier, Israel’s security cabinet met to determine how the IDF should handle Jihad Islami’s massive assault against Israel Wednesday, executed on orders from its boss, Al Qods Brigades chief Gen. Qassem Soleimani, as payback for Israel's seizure of an Iranian missile ship last week.