The situation in the Gaza Strip is once again escalating after the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) assasinated Nur Barake, a deputy commander of an elite unit of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, in the town of Khan Yunis. The assasination triggered a series of clashes between Palestinian fighters and IDF troops, who called airstrikes to support their retreat.
An IDF spokesperson claimed that the “force acted as part of the IDF’s efforts to preserve Israel’s superiority over its enemies in a wide range of areas. The night force carried out a lengthy operation during which it encountered a very complex reality”. The spokesperson also said that the IDF troops acted “heroically”.
According to different sources, a total of 5-7 Palestinians, including members of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, was killed in the clashes. The IDF said that one IDF servicemember was killed and another one was injured. In response to the assasination, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades launched at least 17 rockets at targets in southern Israel.
Summing up the recent developments, it looks that the IDF operation went not as it had been planned. This caused a wave of political and media hysteria in Israel.
Israeli Minister of Science Technology and Space Ofir Akunis [Likud] stated that Israel has to return to the policy of targeted strikes.
“Hamas is a cruel terror group [which] aims to destroy the state of Israel,” he said, “it must be hurt, including using targeted strikes against the heads of the snake.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also going to hold security consultations on Gaza. The Israeli top military and political leadership will once again discuss a possible large-scale military action in the region. Over the past few weeks, the IDF has deployed multiple battle tanks and other military equipment near the contact line with Gaza.