Israel has killed between 20% and 30% of Hamas’ fighters in Gaza since declaring war on the Palestinian militant group following its cross-border raid on October 7th. These figures are according to United States intelligence estimates reported by the Wall Street Journal on Sunday.
In a classified report compiled earlier this month, Washington estimated Hamas had between 25,000 and 30,000 fighters in Gaza before the war, plus thousands of members of the territory’s police force and other authorities, basing its estimates on intercepted communications, drone surveillance, and Israeli intelligence.
In addition to the estimated 5,000 to 9,000 dead militants, another 10,500 to 11,700 Hamas fighters have been wounded, a US official told the WSJ, clarifying that many of the latter could return to combat. The remaining fighters are likely doing “two or three jobs,” having assumed the responsibilities of their fallen comrades, retired Army Gen. Joseph Votel surmised. -RT
The United States has tacitly acknowledged the failure of Israel’s three-month bombardment of Gaza to bring about the destruction of Hamas. The stated goal in waging war on the enclave was to completely remove the group from the globe. The administration of President Joe Biden has repeatedly urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to reduce civilian casualties and adopt a more “surgical” strategy targeting high-ranking members of the organization rather than low-level fighters, even while lowering its expectations from the obliteration of Hamas to its degradation as a security threat.
In announcing the withdrawal of thousands of troops from Gaza earlier this month, West Jerusalem, too, appeared to acknowledge the failure of its scorched-earth tactics, which have killed nearly 25,000 Palestinians, two-thirds of them women and children, according to the Gaza Health Ministry. The high reported rate of civilian casualties has triggered allegations of genocidal intent from the international community, culminating in a case filed by South Africa against Israel in the International Court of Justice. -RT
Earlier this month, Israel did say that the operation in Gaza would be changing.
Middle East War: Israel Says The Operation In Gaza Will “Shift”
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