War Day 157: High Terror-Alert for Ramadan, Israel “Victory is Close”

War Summary, Day One Hundred and Fifty Seven: Defense Minister Yoav Gallant told soldiers: ‘we must prepare for an increase in terrorism during Ramadan’, Benjamin Netanyahu said: ‘we are closer to victory than it seems’, and the IDF and Shin Bet eliminated a terrorist from Jenin who was on his way to carry out a terror attack.

By Mrs. Bruria Efune

War Summary, Day One Hundred and Fifty Seven:

134 held captive in Gaza.
112 hostages freed.
11 hostage bodies rescued.
33 hostages confirmed murdered in Gaza.
1,400+ Israelis murdered.
249 fallen soldiers in the battle in Gaza.
6 fallen soldiers in Northern Israel.
3 fallen soldiers in Judea & Samaria.
14,900 injured.
13,840 rockets fired at Israel.
160,000 Israelis displaced from their homes.
1 Jewish nation united in prayer, charity, and good deeds.

Top Headlines:

  • Hamas’s number three may have been eliminated.
  • The IDF escalated its response in Lebanon.
  • Israeli security is on high alert for increased terrorism during Ramadan.

Hostage Updates:

At this point the chance of a hostage release deal during Ramadan is very low, but still exists.

Gaza Front Updates:

Hamas has not successfully fired rockets onto Israeli civilians since Thursday.

Thank G-d, the IDF did not announce the names of any fallen soldiers today.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Fox News: “We are closer to victory than it seems.” He also said that he appreciates the help from U.S. President Biden, and hopes that it will continue—and that it “does not help” when Hamas sees that there are disagreements between the two.

The IDF carried out an airstrike on a tunnel in Nuseirat, Central Gaza, based on intelligence that Marwan Issa, the deputy head of the of Hamas’s military wing under Muhammad Dief, was inside. It is still not confirmed whether he is dead or alive. Issa is considered to be number three in Hamas’s terrorism leadership.

IDF spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Hagari followed the announcement of the airstrike with the promise, “We will continue to pursue everyone who was involved in the massacre, and not only in Gaza.”

This afternoon, Netanyahu released a video, in which he says, “We are on the way to total victory. On the way to this victory, we already eliminated number four in Hamas. Three, two, and one are on the way.” Number four likely refers to Hamas’s deputy political leader Saleh al-Arouri, who was eliminated in Beirut in January.

On-ground battles were primarily seen in specific areas in Central Gaza, and in the South in Qarara, Hamad, and Khan Younis.

In Hamad, the IDF troops came under heavy gun and antitank missile fire as they raided Hamas apartments, eliminated terrorists, and found weapons and tunnel shafts. Dozens of terrorists were eliminated, and several surrendered and were arrested. In one dramatic incident, IDF troops came under fire from terrorists who were hiding in an apartment with a woman and child in the room next door. The troops carefully launched a shoulder-fired missile and took out the room from where the terrorists were firing, without hitting the room with the mother and child—who they then rescued and brought to the evacuation route.

The tunnel shafts in Hamad led to many tunnels, including one where troops found a cache of weapons, and storage of food, and another with weapons manufacturing equipment and concrete production machinery used to build terror tunnels. The tunnels were destroyed with an airstrike.

An IDF intelligence unit monitored the exits of the city from where civilians were evacuating, and arrested dozens of Hamas terrorists who were attempting to flee between the civilians.

Airstrikes were also reported in South Khan Younis, and on a house in Rafah.

Gaza Humanitarian Efforts Updates:

169 packages of humanitarian aid were airdropped over northern Gaza by the UAE, Egypt, Jordan, France, Belgium, and the USA.
149 humanitarian aid trucks were inspected and transferred to Gaza.

Northern Front Updates:

Israel’s far north came under very heavy fire again today, including with at least four explosive drone attacks, all of which crashed in empty areas, causing no harm. The IDF has rigged the GPS systems in Northern Israel, in order to crash Hezbollah’s guided drones.

The IDF escalated its response today, and in addition to strikes on targets in Southern Lebanon, airstrikes were reported in northeastern Lebanon’s Baalbek, close to Dar al-Amal Hospital. According to Arab reports, one of the targets in the attack is a maintenance center belonging to Hezbollah near the Dar al-Amal hospital in the area. 

Houthi War Front Updates:

An air-raid siren was triggered in Eilat this afternoon, which the IDF later reported was a false alarm. It’s unclear if it was a false detection, or if a missile was intercepted long before reaching Israel’s airspace and becoming a danger.

The British naval security company, Ambrey, reported that the Houthis attempted a missile attack against a British ship in the Al-Mandab Strait west of the port city of Hodeidah in Yemen.

Reports in Yemen indicate that the U.S. and British alliance carried out three airstrikes against Houthi targets in north of Yemen.

Judea and Samaria Updates:

Today, the IDF and Shin Bet eliminated a Palestinian terrorist from Jenin who was on his way to carry out a terror attack. When apprehended, the terrorist pulled a gun out on the forces, who then eliminated him. Aside from a firearm, the terrorist also had a primed explosive on him.

Overnight, the IDF arrested 37 wanted persons across Judea and Samaria. Troops also located and destroyed explosive devices in a counterterrorism operation in the Nur Shams and Tulkarm areas. In Kalkilia, troops arrested a wanted man and confiscated weapons and seven pipe bombs that were in the vehicle of a terrorist who shot at the forces during the operation. Troops also found and confiscated approximately 150,000 NIS of terrorist funds.

So far, since the beginning of the war, approximately 3,500 wanted persons have been arrested throughout Judea and Samaria. Over 1,500 of them are associated with Hamas, and the remainder are associated with various other terror groups in the region.

Major General Rasan Aliyan of the IDF’s COGAT division (Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories) announced this evening that during the days of Ramadan and increased number of Palestinian worshipers will be allowed to enter Jerusalem from the Judea and Samaria regions, using a valid permit and magnetic card. The criteria for entrants will be men over the age of 55, women over the age of 50, and children under the age of 10. 

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant told Duvduvan soldiers that “we must prepare for an increase in terrorism during Ramadan. It should be assumed that during this period we will be increasing [counterterrorism] activity, and maybe even boiling over. The principle must be that we go after whoever is needed to bring him under any conditions.” 

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