Raid on Gaza: Islamic Jihad leader killed, nine victims. Israel recalls 25,000 reservists

from Davide Frattini

Operation «Breaking Dawn» has started. Among the victims also a little girl. Hamas: Israel will pay the price

A rectangle of wall detaches from the wall of the block in the center of Gaza: where there was a window now there is a hole three times the size that expels dust and flames. Where before the leaders of Islamic Jihad sat plotting attacks – according to Israeli intelligence – death remains.

The “Rise of Dawn” operation begins with the killing of Taysir al Jaabari (along with at least ten other people, including a five-year-old girl) and no one yet knows how it will end. The officers explain that they have sent the message to Hamas to stay out of it, they would like this to remain a mini-war against Jihadthey know the odds are low: 25,000 reservists have already been recalled, the roads around the Strip blocked, the Iron Dome anti-missile batteries placed around Tel Aviv.

The reprisal announced in the afternoon came at nine in the evening, as promised by Islamist spokesmen. Rockets to cities north of Gaza, always the first to come under fire when these cyclical conflicts reignite. In the Hebrew jargon, the military are called sivuv, a word that to Fania Oz-Salberger, daughter of the novelist Amos, sounds fatalistic and desperate: another round of pain that seems inevitable, in the Bible indicates the cycles of the sun. And of the dawn in fact.

Jaabari was eliminated because he would be the one to lead the team charged with avenging the arrest five days ago of Bassam al Saadi, 61 years spent more inside than outside Israeli prisons: among the leaders in Jenin, in the north of the West Bank, is suspected of planning attacks on Israelis. Analysts expected operations in the West Bank would open the Gaza front. So it happened. The intelligence had prepared the public with filtered information to military journalists: the Jihad was defining the final details of an attack with anti-tank rockets to be fired over the barrier on civilian targets.

Once again in recent years Israel goes to war during an election campaign. Yair Lapid has been prime minister for a month and a half, an interim head of government (at least until the November 1 elections) on whom the Palestinian factions may have wanted to put pressure. The coalition he chaired with Naftali Bennett until the crisis was born just after the eleven-day clash in May last year. In between the civilians: the inhabitants of Israeli cities hit by rockets (about fifty in the first minutes alone), the two million Palestinians in Gaza squeezed under the rule of Hamas in a corridor of sand 41 kilometers long and 6 to 12 kilometers wide. Few can get out of it due to the Israeli embargo against fundamentalists, while the Egyptian-controlled southern crossing has almost always been closed since 2007, when Hamas took control of the Strip from the Palestinian Authority by arms.

August 5, 2022 (change August 5, 2022 | 22:59)

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Raid on Gaza: Islamic Jihad leader killed, nine victims. Israel recalls 25,000 reservists

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