Gaza: The Israeli military planned to launch a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip this weekend, but postponed it for few days due to weather conditions that would have hampered pilots and drone operators’ ability to support ground forces, The New York Times reported, citing three senior Israeli military officers who outlined unclassified details about the offensive plan.
According to the plan, the Israeli military is ordered to capture Gaza City and destroy the enclave’s current leadership, the Saturday report read, adding that tens of thousands of Israeli soldiers, as well as tanks, sappers and commandos, were expected to participate in the offensive.
Hamas fighters, on their part, plan to ambush Israeli troops from behind by emerging suddenly from numerous Gaza City’s hidden underground tunnels, The New York Times reported, citing a Hamas officer.
Earlier in the day, US investigative journalist Seymour Hersh said Israel was planning an attack on Gaza using bombs equipped with the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) guidance kit, which would lead to the complete destruction of the city.
On October 7, Palestinian group Hamas launched a surprise large-scale rocket attack against Israel from the Gaza Strip, prompting Israel to declare a state of war the following day and launch retaliatory strikes. Both Israel and Palestine have reported over 1,000 deaths and thousands of injured as a result of the escalation.