Foreign Policy

published : 2023-11-06

Israel's Military Surrounds Gaza City, Prepares for Ground Incursion Against Hamas

Israeli troops set to march through the streets in a high-stakes battle against Hamas

An aerial shot of Gaza City, captured at sunset, showcasing the division between the northern and southern parts of the city. (Taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV)

Israel’s military is poised for a major offensive in Gaza City, the capital of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. They have successfully surrounded the city, effectively dividing the territory into northern and southern parts, marking a significant stage in their ongoing war with Hamas.

This week, Israeli troops are expected to march through the streets of Gaza City, where they will confront Hamas operatives determined to fight street by street. Hamas has constructed an extensive network of tunnels, making the battle even more challenging.

The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) launched airstrikes overnight, targeting 450 locations, which included tunnels, military compounds, and missile launch sites. In a significant move, troops managed to secure a Hamas compound, killing a senior militant.

Since the ground offensive began over a week ago, the IDF has suffered the loss of 30 troops. Tragically, this number adds to the already high death toll of over 1,400 people, most of whom were killed in the initial Hamas attack that instigated the conflict.

In addition to the casualties, at least 242 Israeli hostages have been taken into Gaza, escalating tensions even further.

Israeli troops marching through the streets of Gaza City, engaged in a fierce battle against Hamas operatives. (Taken with a Nikon D850)

Amidst the chaos, foreign survivors vividly recall the horrific Hamas attack on Israel, describing the scenes as 'everything was burning'. The devastation caused by the Israeli retaliation is evident, with buildings in the Palestinian refugee camp of Jabalia demolished by air strikes.

Further complicating the situation, Gaza experienced a temporary communications blackout late Sunday, leaving residents disconnected. Although services were restored on Monday, the region's dire circumstances remain unchanged.

Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians are still trapped in Gaza City and other northern towns, facing dwindling supplies of food, medicine, water, and fuel. Gaza's sole power station remains inactive, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis.

While Israel has allowed some humanitarian aid into the region, fuel supplies have been restricted due to concerns that Hamas might misuse it for military purposes.

In an attempt to alleviate the suffering, over 450 trucks have brought essential supplies into Gaza from Egypt since October 21. However, the mounting needs of the 2.3 million Palestinians in the territory require more significant assistance.

A survivor of the Hamas attack on Israel, standing amidst the rubble, reflecting the devastation caused by the conflict. (Taken with a Sony A7R III)

Israel has urged the remaining Gazans to evacuate their homes and move southward, away from the impending ground invasion. So far, approximately 800,000 people have complied with these military orders.

Despite mounting international pressure, including calls from the United States, Jordan, and Egypt, Israel has rejected requests for a pause in their ground operation or a broader cease-fire.

This article has been reconstructed based on information from Israeli media and official statements. Our thoughts go out to all those affected by this devastating conflict.