Israel prepares reservists as Gaza conflict intensifies — Analysis

On Friday, Benny Gantz, Israeli Defense Minister gave permission to summon some 25,000 military reserveists if necessary. Israel has been placed on high alert and Palestinian militants are threatening revenge for killing one of their top commanders during an Israeli airstrike.

Gantz’ office announced the potential call-up less than an hour after Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) leader Zihad Al-Nakhala threatened to rain down missiles on the Israeli capital of Tel Aviv over the “coming hours.”

Al-Nakhala made the threat following an attack by Israeli warplanes on a Gaza City apartment block. The missile killed Taysir Al-Jabari, a commander of the PIJ. The strikes, dubbed ‘Operation Breaking Dawn’ by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), targeted an additional ten to 20 PIJ terrorists, and killed members of a “terrorist squad”Who was it? “on their way to carry out an anti-tank missile and sniper attack,”According to the Israeli military,

According to Palestinian officials, the strike killed 9 people including a girl aged five years old and injured 55 more. 

Palestinian militants vow imminent revenge on Israel

Alongside al-Nakhala’s threat, a ‘Joint Operations Room’ representing multiple other Palestinian militant groups issued a statement warning that the Israeli strikes “won’t go unpunished.”

Israel has begun preparations to a Palestinian counter-attack. In Israel’s emergency High Command Post, the IDF opened and deployed Iron Dome missile defence batteries close to the cities of Beersheba and Tel Aviv. Bomb shelters have also been made ready in the capital, while police and firefighters have been dispatched to areas near Israel’s borders with Gaza in anticipation of rocket fire.

Shortly after Gantz’ announcement, Israeli forces renewed their assault on Gaza, Palestinian sources said. Another PIJ operative was reported killed, as IDF spokesman Ron Kochav told Israel’s Channel 12 “we’re in the midst of a targeted campaign against the Palestinian Islamic Jihad,”Israel does not intend to bring Hamas into its rapidly-escalating conflict.

In the meantime, video was posted by IDF footageThe troops were apparently getting ready for battle and forming.

The latest escalation began when Israeli forces arrested PIJ’s West Bank leader, Bassem Saadi, in the city of Jenin on Monday. A Palestinian teenager was killed in the raid on Saadi’s home, triggering outcry across the Palestinian territories. Israeli officials warned of imminent revenge attacks as the PIJ put its fighters under high alert.

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