War Day 104: Heavy Fire In The North, Medicine Sent to Hostages

War Summary, Day One Hundred and Four: Heavy fire fell on Israel’s north today which set of air-raid sirens as far as Meron, Qatar announced that the medicines for the hostages have entered the Gaza Strip, and disruptions in global shipping as a result of the Houthi attacks in the Red Sea will continue for at least a few months.

By Mrs. Bruria Efune

War Summary, Day One Hundred and Four:

136 held captive in Gaza.
110 hostages freed.
11 hostage bodies rescued.
33 hostages confirmed murdered in Gaza.
1,300+ Israelis murdered.
193 fallen soldiers in the battle in Gaza.
5 fallen soldiers in Northern Israel.
3 fallen soldiers in Judea & Samaria.
8,000 injured.
12,900 rockets fired at Israel.
187,533 Israelis displaced from their homes.
1 Jewish nation united in prayer, charity, and good deeds.

Hostage Updates:

Yesterday IDF representatives updated the families of former hostages Sgt. Ron Sherman and Cpl. Nick Beizer, whose bodies were retrieved mid-December, with new information about the cause of their deaths.

The hostage’s bodies had been retrieved from a tunnel. IDF research and a pathology report determined that they were not killed by an Israeli airstrike, but likely another cause, while in captivity underground.

This morning (Wednesday), Senior Hamas official Musa Abu Marzouk detailed the Qatar-mediated pharmaceutical agreement. According to him, for every pack of medicine delivered to the hostages, a thousand packs will go to the Gaza Strip. He also claimed that the supply of medicine will be carried out through a country that Hamas trusts, and that the Red Cross will supply medicine to four hospitals that cover the entire territory of the Strip. He says the medicine will be delivered to the hostages from the hospitals, along with additional aid and food.

He also claimed that, Israel would be prevented from inspecting the trucks with the shipment of the drugs. Israel did inspect the trucks. Later, in the evening, Qatar announced that the medicines and aid have entered the Gaza Strip.

In response to questions, IDF Brig. Gen. Hagari professed that the IDF will not know for sure if the medication actually reaches the hostages.

An Israeli source told Israel Hayom that while talks for a new hostage release deal are ongoing, there is no optimism on Israel’s side that anything will come out of it.

Gaza Front Updates:

Hamas fired one round of rockets at the Gaza Envelope communities today. No injuries were reported.

The IDF announced the names of three heroes who fell in battle in the Gaza Strip:
Master Sgt. (res.) Zechariah Pesach Haber, 32, from Jerusalem
Sgt. Maj. (res.) Yair Katz, 34, from Holon
Staff Sgt. Oriya Ayimalk Goshen, 21, from Jerusalem

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant spoke to troops of the Navy’s Shayetet 13 commando unit, and again stressed that the war will not end until the hostages are returned home, and Hamas is defeated. “If the fate of Hamas is not complete dismantlement, we will not be able to live in the State of Israel, “ he said, adding that “we have no right to stop the fighting, as long as there are hostages in Gaza. The only way and thing that returns hostages is military pressure, because Hamas understands only one thing.”

IDF spokesman Brigadier General Daniel Hagari announced that the IDF forces completed the demolition of the Hamas infrastructure in the center of the Gaza Strip. He added that there were unfortunately heavy battles in Khan Younis, Southern Gaza, over the last day resulting in some IDF casualties. “Our forces eliminated 30 terrorists in just this day in Khan Yunis alone. The activity in Khan Yunis takes time, The war in the tunnels and their destruction is challenging. We are learning and drawing lessons from this war underground.”

The IDF continues to clear out Northern Gaza of weapons, Hamas holdouts, and rocket launchers. The troops found the three launchers which had fired at Netivot yesterday—some were already prepared to fire again. Amongst the Hamas holdouts found and eliminated in Gaza City today were two terrorists in the middle of an attempt at firing mortars at troops in the area.

In Southern Gaza, where troops continue to move forward, the IDF eliminated Bilal Nofal, a senior Hamas commander responsible for interrogations of suspected spies in the southern Gaza Strip, amongst other Hamas terrorists.

In Rafah, Gaza’s southernmost city, an IDF fighter jet struck a rocket launcher recently used to fire at Israeli civilians.

The IDF airdropped around 16 tons of equipment, including ammunition, fuel, water, and food, to the thousands of troops of the 98th Division operating in the Khan Younis. This is the fifth such airdrop since the beginning of the operation, and is done when IDF troops are operating in an area where it is too dangerous or logistically complex to bring a convoy of equipment.

Gaza Humanitarian Efforts Updates:

208 humanitarian aid trucks were inspected and transferred to Gaza today, including food, baby formula, water, medical supplies, hygiene, and shelter equipment. The IDF says that there is no limit to the amount of humanitarian aid that can enter the Gaza Strip.

In response to Jordan’s claims, the IDF denied that the Jordanian field hospital in Gaza was damaged by Israeli shelling. The IDF provided aerial image showing the camp in an undamaged shape, and says the troops were made aware to steer clear of the hospital. The field hospital continues to function and provide medical care to those who need it.

Northern Front Updates:

Heavy fire again fell on Israel’s far north today, as well as a few attack drones, one of which set of air-raid sirens as far as Meron.

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi again hints on upcoming war with Lebanon, and says “I don’t know when the war in the north is, I can tell you that the likelihood of it happening in the coming months is much higher than it was in the past.”

The IDF has been carrying out airstrikes against Hezbollah sites in Lebanon all day, targets included military buildings, two terror cells, and rocket launchers.

Houthi War Front Updates:

The CEO of the skeptic giant Maersk, Vincent Clarke, said today that the disruptions in global shipping as a result of the Houthi attacks in the Red Sea will continue for at least a few months.

“For us, this means longer sailing times and most likely disruption to the supply chains for a few months, we hope less, but it may even be longer, as things are evolving and unpredictable,” Clark said at the International Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Arab media reports that the US and Britain attacked Houthi targets in several provinces, including Hodeidah and Saada.

Judea and Samaria Updates:

The IDF announced that Master Sgt. (res.) Anwar Serhan, 26, from Hurfeish, was killed in a car crash while on duty in Judea and Samaria.

The IDF and Shin Bet eliminated Abdullah Abu Shala, the head of a terror network in Balata, along with gunmen who were planning a large and imminent terror attack with him. Shala and his terror cell were responsible for several terror attacks over the past year, including a shooting attack and a small bombing.

Several firearms were seized from their vehicle following the strike.

The IDF is carrying out a long and extensive counter-terrorism operation in Tulkarem. During the operation, several terrorists opened fire on IDF troops, and in response the IDF eliminated five of them with drone airstrikes. One IDF soldier was seriously injured by gunfire.

During the operation this far, dozens of suspects were questioned, 7 were arrested, and multiple explosive devises were found hidden under the roads.

The operation is still ongoing.

In the village of Beit Anan in the Binyamin area, the forces confiscated equipment and sealed a printing press that printed propaganda materials for Hamas.

All together, 26 suspects were detained over night.

Two of the injured in the attack in Ra’anana, in central Israel, are still in critical condition, one in his 60s, and one 16 years old.

Sixteen illegal residents, including five residents of Gaza, were arrested near the southern city of Umm al-Fahm. The five illegal residents from Gaza were transferred to the security forces for investigation.

International Updates:

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres: “The parties to the fighting in Gaza ignore international law and trample on the Geneva Convention. I repeat my call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.”

After the Biden administration had to bypass Congress twice to provide “emergency aid to Israel”, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer clarified that members of the Senate are considering limits on American supplies.

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