Hezbollah

The Iran, the war in Gaza, and the “convergence of the arenas”

In recent days, senior Iranian officials have renewed their threats to expand the war in the Gaza Strip to additional fronts if a ceasefire is not reached soon and Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip do not stop. At the same time, senior Iranian officials continue to claim that Iran’s proxy organizations in the region operate independently, make decisions based on their interests, and are not subject to instructions from Tehran. At this stage, Iran continues to act according to gradual escalation steps to prevent the opening of a full-scale front against Israel. Iran is doing so while avoiding involving Hezbollah in an all-out campaign, which is liable to exact a heavy price from the Lebanese organization and perhaps even from Iran itself. However, Iran seeks a continuation of gradual escalation, which will exact a price from Israel and the United States through attacks by its proxies in the region. So far, the pro-Iranian Shiite militias in Iraq have been involved in dozens of attacks against American bases in Syria and Iraq. At the same time, the Houthis in Yemen have joined the campaign mainly by launching missiles and drones at Israel. At the same time, there is an ongoing escalation in the fighting between the IDF and Hezbollah, both quantitatively and in terms of the quality of Hezbollah’s attacks along the border with Israel.
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Operation Iron Swords (Updated to 1 p.m., November 21, 2023)

The IDF integrated ground maneuver continued in Gaza City and the north of the Gaza Strip; a number of attacks were also carried out in the central and southern Gaza Strip. The centers of activity included the neighborhoods of Zeitoun, Jabaliya, Beit Lahia and Rafah. The president of the Red Cross met with Isma'il Haniyeh, the head of Hamas’ political bureau, and demanded that the Red Cross be allowed to meet with the abductees. UNRWA and figures from the ministry of health in Gaza continue to report a worsening situation and fear of diseases due to the lack of water. Hezbollah continued attacking IDF posts and cities, towns and villages along the northern border. According to an initial report, the IDF attacked a vehicle south of Tyre at 2:45 p.m., killing four Hamas terrorist operatives. In Judea and SamariaThe Israeli security forces continue counterterrorism activities.The Iranians are trying to coordinate efforts with other countries, especially Muslim countries, to exert pressure on Israel.
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Operation Iron Swords (Updated to 1 p.m., November 20, 2023)

IDF forces continued the integrated ground maneuver, focusing mainly on the northern Gaza Strip and Gaza City. Palestinian officials reported IDF activity at the Indonesian Hospital in the northern Gaza Strip. The IDF spokesman exposed Hamas terrorist activity inside Shifa Hospital, including a 55 meter (about 60 yards) tunnel passing directly under the hospital intended for Hamas activity. He also revealed that Israeli abductees had arrived at the hospital and that one of them was murdered within its walls. Hamas denied the reports. Jordan sent equipment into the Gaza Strip for the construction of a second field hospital in Khan Yunis. In Lebanon, Hezbollah continued attacking IDF positions along the border. Hezbollah reported carrying out about 15 attacks. The IDF responded by attacking Hezbollah targets with artillery fire and airstrikes. In Judea and Samaria Vehicles were shot at in the Salfit area. No casualties were reported. The Houthis hijacked a ship, which they claimed was Israeli ,and captured the crew
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Operation Iron Swords (Updated to 1 p.m., November 19, 2023)

During the past few days the IDF forces continued operations at Shifa Hospital and in several other neighborhoods in Gaza City. In the northern Gaza Strip they operated in Beit Hanoun, Zeitoun, Beit Lahia and Jabalia, and destroyed a Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) post where they found a large quantity of strategic weapons. The Palestinian terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip continue firing rockets daily at Israel, especially at the cities, towns and villages near the border. According to the Palestinians, the situation in the Gaza Strip is getting worse and there is a fear of the spread of diseases. Sources in the Gaza Strip reported that Israel's agreement to bring in two fuel trucks a day for UNRWA was not enough. In Lebanon, Hezbollah's daily attacks on IDF positions and northern cities, towns and villages increased. In Judea and SamariaTwo Palestinian terrorists attempted a shooting attack; they were shot and killed by IDF forces. The Israeli security forces focused their counterterrorism activities on the Balata refugee camp in Nablus and Jenin. The commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Qods Force sent a communiqué to Muhammed Deif, the commander of Hamas' military-terrorist wing, congratulating him on Hamas’ October 7 attack. Rallies in support of the Palestinians were held throughout Iran. Senior Iranian officials praised the Hamas attack.
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Operation Iron Swords (Updated to 1 p.m., November 16, 2023)

In Gaza City, the operation focused on Shifa Hospital, where  evidence of terrorist activity was found. Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) tried to cast doubt on the evidence, and they and several Arab countries criticized the IDF’s activity. In the northern Gaza Strip, the forces operated in the Palestine post of the Shati refugee camp. The forces also took control of Hamas’ central anchorage, which was a focal point for Hamas and PIJ terrorist activity. Rocket fire: The daily number of rocket fire attacks continues to decrease and there were about ten during the past day. According to an unofficial estimate, since October 7 approximately 1,200 Israeli civilians and security personnel have been killed, 371 of them soldiers and officers; 239 civilian and military abductees are held by the terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip. Hamas and the PIJ continue to accuse Israel of delaying a prisoner exchange deal. The PIJ claimed it holds 30 hostages. The Gaza Strip: The World Food Organization warned of food shortages. The fuel situation is deteriorating and according to UNRWA, the entry of one truck with fuel for the agency’s use contributed very little to improving the situation. The Palestinian Communications Company announced the generators were no longer operative. An association based in Turkey announced it was organizing an aid flotilla to the Gaza Strip. The northern arena: Hezbollah continued attacking IDF posts. The IDF responded by attacking Hezbollah military-terrorist targets. Hezbollah threatened to intensify its attacks in response to IDF activity in the Gaza Strip. Judea and Samaria: Palestinian terrorists carried out a shooting attack at the Tunnel Crossing in Jerusalem. Seven people were injured, one of them fatally. The terrorists were shot and killed by Israeli security forces. The terrorists apparently planned to carry out a much larger attack in Jerusalem. Mahmoud Abbas met with the White House coordinator for Middle East and North African affairs, and with the United States assistant secretary of state. Iran: Hamas vigorously denied the Reuters report that Ali Khamenei, the leader of Iran, meeting with Ismail Haniyeh, head of the political bureau of Hamas, said that since Hamas had not given Tehran advance notice about the October 7 attack, Iran would not enter the war on its behalf. The international arena: The UN Security Council voted on a resolution calling for immediate action for prolonged pauses in the fighting and the establishment of humanitarian corridors in the Gaza Strip.
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Operation Iron Swords (Updated to 1 p.m., November 15, 2023)

The IDF completed the takeover of the Shati refugee camp and of a number of government institutions in Gaza City. During the night, the IDF forces began a focused operation at Shifa Hospital, which was carried out after the hospital management had been informed in advance of the soldiers’ entry into the compound and after an effort had been made to evacuate the patients and Gazans who had taken shelter in the hospital; IDF forces delivered medical equipment to the hospital. The IDF’s entry into the hospital compound provoked a wave of angry reactions from the terrorist organizations, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Arab sources. The rate of rocket fire from the Gaza Strip has decreased. Three rockets were fired at the central part of the country and injured several civilians. A missile launched at Eilat was intercepted in the Red Sea. Two rockets were launched from south Syria at IDF positions. The terrorist organizations continue to accuse Israel of sabotaging any agreement to release the abductees. Ziyad al-Nakhalah, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) secretary general, claimed the negotiating method for the release of the hostages could push them to abort the deal and keep the hostages to "obtain better conditions." Hezbollah continued attacking along
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