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“Half of Hamas terrorists are killed, wounded, neutralized or captured”

Gallant, Austin and Netanyahu. Wikipedia, flickr

At a special press conference held by Defense Minister Yoav Galant on Monday evening in the Kirya, Tel Aviv, the achievements of the military campaign to date were discussed – a campaign he did not hesitate to call “the most complex and complicated in the history of wars”. According to Galant, beyond the practical neutralization of about half of Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip, the damage to Hamas’ command and control systems is even more impressive: Of the approximately 25 Hamas battalions in the Gaza Strip (a Hamas battalion is suze equivalent to an IDF brigade), only 7 were left, most of them in Rafah, to which the maneuver has not yet arrived, and the others in Khan Yunis and the centeral camps, which the IDF is attacking at these very stages.

This means that almost total operational control has been achieved in the northern Gaza Strip. This was illustrated in the IDF’s publication yesterday, regarding the achievements of the 162th Division, which is currently operating in the northern region, especially in the Shati neighborhood on the Gaza City’s beach, and the Al-Shifa’a Hospital. If at the beginning of the war it took the IDF over a week to get to the hospital, this time it took the IDF forces less than two hours. This does not mean that there are no more terrorists in the area – during the operation the division killed dozens of terrorists who tried to act against it; rather, this indicates that the terrorists are operating in a dispersed and disorganized manner because of the damage to the command capabilities, preventing them from effectively opposing the IDF’s progress. Continuing such an attack will eventually lead to a drastic reduction in Hamas’s capabilities as an army.

According to Galant, the damage to the commamd abilities is most evident in the Hamas leadership, especially Yahya Snoar, who is no longer able to command his forces directly, because he is constantly on the run from the IDF. “Yahya Sinwar is on the run from the IDF. He goes from hiding to hiding and can’t communicate with his forces,” Galant said – and perhaps that’s why Hamas’s response to the deal offer of the hostage exchange that Israel submitted through intermediaries (according to media reports) has not yet received an official response from the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip. Prime Minister Netanyahu stated yesterday that regardless of any deal, Yahya Sinwar will die before the end of the war, along with the rest of the Hamas leadership.

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