War Day 171: Terrorists, Weapons Found in MRI Ward, Shin Bet Stops Huge Iranian Smuggle

War Summary, Day One Hundred and Seventy One: Hamas fires rockets as far as Ashdod, U.S. fails to veto a damaging UN resolution and Netanyahu cancels delegation to Washington, IDF begins new operation in Al-Amal, and Shin Bet prevents huge Iranian weapons smuggling to Judea and Samaria.

By Mrs. Bruria Efune

134 held captive in Gaza.
112 hostages freed.
11 hostage bodies rescued.
35 hostages confirmed murdered in Gaza.
1,400+ Israelis murdered.
252 fallen soldiers in the battle in Gaza.
6 fallen soldiers in Northern Israel.
4 fallen soldiers in Judea & Samaria.
14,900 injured.
14,200 estimated rockets fired at Israel.
102,100 Israelis displaced from their homes.
1 Jewish nation united in prayer, charity, and good deeds.

Top Headlines:

  • Hamas fires rockets as far as Ashdod
  • The U.S. failed to veto a damaging UN resolution, Netanyahu cancelled the delegation to Washington.
  • IDF begins new operation in Al-Amal, surrounds hospital
  • Shin Bet prevents huge Iranian weapons smuggling to Judea and Samaria

Hostage Updates:

Hamas has officially rejected the last hostage release deal, which was a compromise proposed by the U.S. and Qatar, and agreed to by Israel. Hamas chose to continue insisting on a complete withdrawal of IDF troops from Gaza, and a massive release of dangerous terrorists.

Gaza Front Updates:

Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) have launched dozens of rockets at Israeli civilians today. Eight were fired all the way to Ashdod, in a first since mid-January. Sirens were also heard in Ashkelon, Zikim, Sderot, and other communities in the Gaza Envelope. The Iron Dome intercepted all rockets that were headed towards civilian areas, while allowing several to fall into empty spaces.

On Purim, the IDF announced the name of one soldier who fell in battle in Gaza City:

Staff Sgt. Lior Raviv, 21, of the Nahal Brigade, from Rishon Letzion

The UN Security Cabinet passed a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire and release of the hostages—however, it did not condition the ceasefire on the release of the hostages, nor condemn Hamas. Hamas welcomed the UN resolution. The U.S. abstained from the vote, but did not veto it, allowing it to pass. In response, PM Netanyahu canceled the Israeli delegation which was scheduled to leave for Washington at President Biden’s request to discuss the Rafah incursion. Netanyahu had moments earlier said that Israel will move ahead into Rafah—with or without American support.

Israeli Minister of Defense, Yoav Gallant, is already in Washington, after earlier being invited to meet with members of the American defense establishment. On his goals for the trip were talks about the completion of the war to dismantle Hamas—including in Rafah, returning the hostages, and continuing the arms shipment from the U.S. During Gallant’s meeting with Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, Blinken brought up Rafah and claimed that that there are alternatives to a ground operation in Rafah that would protect the security of the Palestinians as well as the security of Israeli citizens.

Meanwhile, in Northern Gaza, the operation in Shifa Hospital has continued into day 8, and is now considered one of the most successful operations of the war. Since the beginning of the operation, the IDF has detained and interviewed 800 suspects—of which over 500 were confirmed to be terrorists and were brought to Israel for interrogations. The IDF has not yet released the names of senior terrorists who were captures, since they are still going though interrogations leading to useful information. Troops also found large amounts of weapons in the hospital, including in the maternity ward, and a significant amount in the MRI center. In some cases, weapons were hidden in the floors and ceilings.

The IDF soldiers have been extremely cautious not to harm civilians in the hospital, leading to difficult situations with face-to-face combat against Hamas terrorists inside the hospital. Terrorists were found and eliminated both in the maternity and MRI wards.

On Purim, Mishloach Manot sponsored by our readers was delivered to soldiers in and around Shifa Hospital.

In Central Gaza, the IDF eliminated several terrorists, including one who was spotted by IDF observers via drone footage as he popped out of a tunnel. After rockets were fired from a humanitarian zone in Deir al-Balah towards Ashdod, the IDF destroyed the rocket launcher with a very cautious airstrike.
located the rocket launcher which fired a barrage at Ashdod, and destroyed it with an airstrike.

In Southern Gaza, the IDF is continuing to operate in al-Qarara, just north of Khan Younis, where troops eliminated “numerous” terrorists, and located and destroyed large caches of Hamas weapons and tunnels. The Air Force assisted with several airstrikes, including on squads of terrorists who were prepared to target IDF troops.

The IDF is also wrapping up in Qatari-built Hamad, where they found many terrorists, weapons, and tunnels. The IDF says that their neighborhood is particularly challenging for troops to clear, since it contains 25 high rise buildings, with many places for terrorists to hide.

The IDF has begun a new operation in the Al-Amal neighborhood of Khan Younis after precise intelligence indicated that Hamas is using civilian infrastructure—including the hospital—for terror activities. The IDF has operated in this area previously, but only lightly and with extreme caution due to the heavy presence of civilians in the Al-Amal hospital—from where terrorists were firing at IDF troops. At the start of the operation, the Air Force struck around 40 Hamas targets in the area, including several tunnel shafts. The IDF has now surrounded the neighborhood, and is allowing civilians to evacuate from a designated route, where Shin Bet and military intelligence officers are scanning the crowds and detaining suspected terrorists for questioning. So far, around 20 terrorist gunmen have been eliminated in the area and troops located a large amount of Hamas weapons. It is possible that we will se another operation similar to that of Shifa Hospital, though on a smaller scale.

Palestinian reports in Gaza say that the IDF is also surrounding Nasr Hospital, just north of Khan Younis.

Airstrikes were also reported in Rafah.

Al Jazeera published a report in which a woman claimed that the IDF were assaulting women in Shifa Hospital, and then quietly deleted it after Hamas admitted that the woman had made up the story in order to garner sympathy for the cause.

Gaza Humanitarian Efforts Updates:

228 aid trucks were delivered into Gaza today
159 packages (1 ton each) airdropped over northern Gaza
22 food aid trucks were coordinated to northern Gaza

Over the past 6 weeks, Israel has helped several organizations and private sector donors to deliver 350 food trucks to Northern Gaza. During this time, UNRWA has not requested to deliver a single convoy to the area.

Northern Front Updates:

Hezbollah continued to fire at Israeli communities in Israel’s far north.

Israel responded with airstrikes on Hezbollah targets in Southern Lebanon, and shelling of Hezbollah positions along the border.

Judea and Samaria Updates:

Overnight, the IDF, Shin Bet, and border police forces carried out a counter-terrorism operation in Judea and Samaria, during which they arrested seven wanted persons. So far, since the beginning of the war, approximately 3,600 wanted persons have been arrested throughout Judea and Samaria, approximately 1,600 of whom are associated with Hamas, and the remainder are associated with various other terror groups.

The Shin Bet security agency announced that thanks to the arrest and interrogation of Palestinian suspects from Judea and Samaria in recent weeks, they managed to prevent Iranian attempts to smuggle large shipments of advanced weapons to terrorists in Judea and Samaria, which were for the purpose of terror attacks against Israelis. The interrogated Palestinians provided important information to the IDF, leading to the network between Iran, a senior Fatah official, and recruits in Judea and Samaria.

After halting and confiscating a large attempted shipment of weapons, the Shin Bet says that they and the IDF are continuing to work on locating additional similar smuggling attempts.


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