The IDF General Command conferred Wednesday night, Aug. 8, on a full-scale military operation against Hamas after it launched a non-stop barrage of 150 rockets against Israel. The town of Sderot took four direct hits and 8 injured casualties. Iron Dome intercepted four. The others landed in the Eshkol, Shear Hanegev and Hof Ashkelon councils, most on open ground. However, a dozen people were taken to hospital with trauma symptoms as the sirens blared hour after hour. Israel’s air strikes targeted a factory for tunnel components, a marine terror tunnel on the shore, various military compounds including a facility for manufacturing rockets and other weapons, as well as a central logistic depot. Residents of the communities within 7km of the Gaza Strip were ordered to stay in fortified quarters. Children’s summer camps on the Thursday will take place only in premises with shelters.
DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the IDF General Command meeting urgently Wednesday night has little option but to launch a full-scale military operation against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. This would necessitate a ground incursion. It was decided to keep the operation as short as possible, the main goal being to push Hamas back from the Israel border and deliver a blow painful enough for the terrorists to beg for a ceasefire. IDF chiefs hope that this will cure Hamas leaders of the belief that they can dictate the rules of the game, as it has done so far. The generals are taking into account that the rocket barrage will spread across other parts of Israel in the course of the operation. The General Command conference continued into Wednesday night.