War Day 83: New Hostage Deal On The Table, 12 Battalions Eliminated

The IDF explores Hamas’s tunnels under Rantisi Hospital, in Gaza City.

War Summary, Day Eighty Three: Egypt is currently leading negotiations for a new hostage release deal, in the north of Gaza, 12 Hamas battalions are almost completely eliminated, and in the north Hezbollah significantly escalated the strength of their attacks today.

By Mrs. Bruria Efune

War Summary, Day Eighty Three:

128 held captive in Gaza.
110 hostages freed.
11 hostage bodies rescued.
32 hostages confirmed murdered in Gaza.
1,300+ Israelis murdered.
164 fallen soldiers in the battle in Gaza.
5 fallen soldiers in Northern Israel.
8,000 injured.
12,500 rockets fired at Israel.
187,533 Israelis displaced from their homes.
1 Jewish nation united in prayer, charity, and good deeds.

Hostage Updates:

Egypt is currently leading negotiations for a new hostage release deal. The primary challenge is Hamas’s demand for a permanent ceasefire, and to allow Hamas continued rule over Gaza—both requests that are red lines to Israel.

Gaza Front Updates:

Hamas fired three rounds of rockets to the Gaza Envelope communities today. These communities remain largely evacuated, aside from the farmers and volunteers who are working in the fields.

The IDF announced the names of three heroes who fell in battle in Gaza:

Lt. Yaron Eliezer Chitiz, 23, from Ra’anana
Staff Sgt. Itay Buton, 20, from Petah Tikva
Staff Sgt. Efraim Yachman, 21, from Neve Daniel

Minister Ron Dermer, who is a member of Israel’s War Cabinet, met at the White House with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. According to announcements, the conversation dealt with the transition to another phase of the war, which would “maximize the targeting of high-value Hamas targets.” They also discussed steps to improve the humanitarian situation and minimize harm to civilians in the Gaza Strip, the possibilities of releasing more hostages, and plans for Gaza the day after the war.

IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, said, “Regarding the fighting in the Gaza Strip, we expanded the operation in Khan Yunis, we added another brigade, we continue to operate there using new methods of fighting above and below the ground.”

The Hamas terror military is comprised of 24 battalions, with around 30,000 terrorist fighters. Each battalion is connected to a village or city neighborhood. In the north of Gaza, including Gaza City, there were 12 battalions, which the IDF has almost completely eliminated.

The IDF’s main battles now are in Central Gaza, against the battalions of the four camps, and five more battalions in Khan Younis—where much of Hamas’s leadership is believed to be hiding, along with the hostages.

Over the past day, the IDF carried out around 200 strikes on Hamas targets in Gaza, from air, ground, and sea.

In the north of Gaza, where the IDF has mostly defeated Hamas’s battalions, IDF soldiers still face small holdouts of terrorists who hide throughout the cities, and lay explosive traps. Today in Gaza City’s Shejaiya, troops identified Hamas terrorists running between buildings. The troops called a strike against them, which led to secondary blasts, indicating the area was booby-trapped.

In the Nasser neighborhood of Gaza City, the IDF announced that they located and destroyed three tunnel shafts around Rantisi Children’s Hospital. The shafts lead to long tunnels underneath the hospital, which were several kilometers long, and lead to strategic locations underneath Gaza City. One tunnel shaft, which was found in a High School connected to the hospital, had a working elevator which travelled down some 20 meters. The IDF says these tunnels were used as a command center by Hamas, and at some point, may have held Israeli hostages.

After a thorough investigation and mapping by the Yahalom unit, which took several weeks, the tunnels were demolished by combat engineers.

In the Daraj and Tuffah neighborhood, the troops also found and eliminated a lone-standing terrorist with a short-range anti-tank missile—they successfully eliminated him before he could do anything.

In Khan Younis, Southern Gaza, much of the warfare is urban door-to-door, and the elite Maglan, Egoz, and Duvdevan IDF units are battling deep in the city. Their main goal is locating and eliminating terrorists and Hamas infrastructure—especially tunnel shafts.

The IDF expanded operations into Khuza’a, on the outskirts of Khan Younis. When preparing troops for the ensuing battle, the commander of the Gaza Division, Brig. Gen. Avi Rosenfeld, referred to the operation as “Oz and Nir,” meaning “Might and Furrow.” The name is a salute to Kibbutz Nir Oz, which lost over a quarter of its population to Hamas’s October 7th massacre.

All the way south, in Muraj and Rafah, Gaza civilians reported IDF Air Strikes.

Gaza Humanitarian Efforts Updates:

115 humanitarian aid trucks were transferred to Gaza via the Rafah crossing today.

The UN is unable to keep up with the speed at which the IDF is inspecting humanitarian aid for approval, and after complaining that the IDF was too slow in approving aid, they now requested that the IDF temporarily close inspections at Kerem Shalom.

The IDF enabled a tactical pause to allow civilians in the Gaza Strip to replenish stocks such as food and water in the Al-Salam neighborhood in Deir Al-Balah, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Northern Front Updates:

Hezbollah significantly escalated the strength of their attacks today. In addition to smaller volleys, a large barrage of 18 missiles were fired at Rosh Hanikra, and 30 at Kiryat Shmona—where four made impacts in the city, causing damage, but no casualties. A Hezbollah attack drone also made impact in the Mount Dov area, where several IDF bases are located.

Another attack drone made impact in the southern Golan Heights, this one believed to have been sent from Syria.

The IDF responded by shelling the launch sites, and attacking a few targets by air.

IDF Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi, visited the Northern Command, where he noted that amidst Hezbollah’s escalation, the military is at a very high level of readiness.

Halevi said, “Our first task is to return residents safely, and that will take time. Today we approved a variety of plans for the future, and we need to be ready for an offensive, if necessary. The IDF and within it the Northern Command are at a very high level of readiness. So far, the campaign here has been managed correctly and meticulously, and this is how it should continue. We will not return the residents without security and a sense of security,” he adds.”

Houthi and Other War Fronts Updates:

The USA announced that yesterday their warships destroyed 12 drones, two ballistic missiles, and two cruise missiles in the Red Sea launched by the Houthis in Yemen.

The National Security spokesman at the White House expressed his concern about the accelerating pace of uranium enrichment in Iran.

Judea and Samaria Updates:

Six terrorists were eliminated by IDF fire in the Nur al-Shams camp, east of Tulkarm. According to Arab publications, many more terrorists were wounded.

Since the beginning of the war, around 2,550 wanted persons have been arrested throughout Judea and Samaria and the Bekaa and Valley Brigade areas. About 1,300 of them are associated with Hamas, and the others are with other terror groups.

General Updates:

The Ministry of Defense completed the procurement of approximately NIS 1 billion worth of spare parts for the Merkava tanks and the Nemer APCs.

*Buy a Helmet, Save a Soldier’s Life:

Our friend, Ezzy Morgenstern, is leading his unit of combat engineering soldiers inside Gaza. They’re a group of kindhearted men; reservists with families at home. Ezzy himself has a wife and bundle of children who have been waiting for 83 days for him to return in safety. These soldiers don’t want to be at war, but they are there to protect us, and keep our nation safe.

The past couple months, and past weeks in particular, have been extremely difficult for them. They’ve seen the worst of what war has to offer, and not all of them survived.

Unfortunately, Ezzy’s unit does not have protective helmets. Due to a logistics and supply shortage, they were given old and outdated ones. These helmets can easily be pierced by the new Iranian bullets, which Hamas terrorists are now firing. There are newer helmets which can protect them, and prevent casualties.

The newer helmets each cost around $400, a price that goes up and down, depending on the current supply. Ezzy’s unit has 250 men.

Some amazing people raised enough to cover the heads of exactly half of them. Ezzy would not take one though; he won’t take a helmet for himself until the head of every soldier in his charge is protected.

I don’t know how we can sleep at night knowing that there are young fathers in Gaza who are fighting for our safety and our homeland, without helmets on their heads.

Please help me raise $50,000 so that we can get a helmet on the last 125 of Ezzy’s soldiers, and on his head too. We will buy the helmets as the funds come in, because every minute lost is a danger, and we can’t afford to risk that.

We will do our part, and Hashem will do the rest, and bring our soldiers home to their families, in victory, and in safety.

Thank you for saving our soldiers lives! To donate, click here.

The helmets will be bought by Ezzy Morgenstern, together with the team at Gderot for Soldiers, from a supplier in Israel approved by the IDF.

All funds raised will go directly to the helmets. Gderot for Soldiers is a 100% volunteer-run team, and never takes payment.

Any funds raised over the $50,000 goal will go to purchasing more helmets for other frontline soldiers who are fighting in Gaza with outdated equipment.

The IDF explores Hamas’s tunnels under Rantisi Hospital, in Gaza City.

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