In response to the cross-border attack by Hamas on October 7, which killed at least 1,200 people in Israel and took 240 others as hostages to Gaza, Israel set two goals: freeing all hostages, Hamas Destroying the military and administrative capacity of.
So far, it appears Israel is nearing completion of its takeover of the northern Gaza Strip after a November 15 raid on the territory’s largest al-Shifa hospital, where Israel believes the Hamas armed group is hiding. Is. Hide command headquarters.
Israeli soldiers near a destroyed house in the Gaza Strip on 8 November. Photo: AP
still follow AP, Israel will still face many difficulties in the near future: international patience is beginning to wear thin, with approximately 2 million Gaza civilians forced to seek refuge in overcrowded shelters in the south. Israel’s continued widespread offensive threatens to trigger a new humanitarian disaster during a cold, wet winter.
Why did Israel focus its attention on the southern Gaza Strip?
Israeli officials have repeatedly rejected international concerns about rising deaths and the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza, and have vowed to continue military operations until Hamas is completely destroyed.
This means Israel would have to attack southern Gaza, where Hamas’s military infrastructure – including thousands of fighters and a network of underground tunnels – is believed to be intact. Israeli officials also suspect that top Hamas commanders may be hiding in the area.
“There is no place in Gaza where we cannot reach” – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israeli troops on the Gaza border on 15 November – “There is no refuge, no refuge, no tolerance.” Hamas supporters.
Even Israeli military officials commented that “it would be impossible to destroy Hamas without capturing the entire Gaza Strip.”
Thousands of Palestinians have to live in refugee camps due to the Israel-Hamas conflict. Photo: AP
Israel’s challenge while advancing in the southern Gaza Strip
Most of Gaza’s civilians are in public shelters and Hamas forces are spread across residential areas. Fierce fighting in the southern Gaza Strip could lead to large numbers of civilian casualties.
Israel holds Hamas responsible for the deaths and accuses the organization of using civilians as human shields.
But the international community, including the United States, Israel’s closest ally, has expressed growing concern over the number of civilian deaths. The United States has not asked Israel to stop the campaign, but has warned Israel that international criticism will increase if the conflict drags on.
Palestinians fled to the southern Gaza Strip on 10 November. Photo: AP
Israel’s campaign targeting Hamas in the Gaza Strip has killed more than 11,200 people, the majority of them women and minors, according to the Palestinian Health Authority.
Thousands of homes were destroyed and thousands of people were driven into southern Gaza, where they lived in deplorable conditions.