War in the Middle East: How much trouble is Hamas in?

As of: December 5th, 2023 1:52 p.m

Israel’s defense minister is convinced that the north of the Gaza Strip will soon be under army control. But Hamas is far from being defeated militarily, let alone its structures have been destroyed.

The Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis: A video from the World Health Organization shows people crowding in front of the emergency room. People are lining up in the hospital. Patients lie in beds in the hallways.

The doctor Muhammad Ahmed Al-Qudra tries to help them. “Many seriously injured people come to us. Amputations, neurosurgical procedures, general operations – especially in the last four days,” he says.

“We have transferred many cases to the European Hospital for surgery. The vast majority of them are women, children and the elderly.” They would not accept patients with minor injuries. The situation is bad, says Al-Qudra.

As the aid organization Doctors Without Borders reports, the situation is similar in other hospitals in the region. Since the Israeli army intensified its attacks in the south of the Gaza Strip, the hospitals have registered a strong influx.

Gallant: “Gaza city will soon collapse”

The Israeli army continues to try to corner the terrorist organization Hamas militarily. Satellite images show tanks and other armored vehicles near Khan Yunis.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant believes the military is on the right track, as he explains in a video on social media: “After the resumption of fighting, the army is in top form. I would like to thank the troops who have increased the pressure on the terrorists. express my respect.”

The actions now taking place in northern Gaza will soon bring about the collapse of the entire city of Gaza and northern Gaza, Gallant said. The army has now begun to advance in the south.

Conflict parties as a source

In the current situation, information on the course of the war, shelling and casualties provided by the Palestinian and Israeli conflict parties cannot be directly verified by an independent body.

Rocket fire in Israel probably from southern Gaza

In the north of the Gaza Strip, the soldiers have surrounded Jabalia and are advancing deeper into the district. One target is the Hamas security headquarters there. The army still appears to be a long way from complete control over the north of the Gaza Strip.

Radical Palestinians are also still able to fire rockets at Israel. The bullets now rarely reach the greater Tel Aviv area, but the sirens continue to wail in southern Israel. This suggests that the rockets are more likely to be fired from the southern part of the Gaza Strip.

“Hamas not unbalanced”

Nevertheless, Hamas is far from down, says former Israeli government advisor Alon Eviatar on Israeli radio: “Hamas is determined to continue the fight. It is a kind of personal fight for survival or a fight for survival of the movement as a whole.”

Eviatar says Israel has not yet unsettled Hamas. “I would say that there is still a lot ahead of us. The fight that Hamas is waging there is the complete realization of the concept of martyrdom.”

Destruction of Hamas remains the war goal

Militarily, the fight may be hopeless in the long term, but Hamas can still inflict casualties on the Israeli army. For the Israeli government, the war goal remains to destroy Hamas.

One key to this is the terrorist organization’s tunnel system. As the Wall Street Journal reports, Israel has plans to flood the tunnels with seawater. The newspaper cites US officials.

The report states that the Israeli army is working in various ways to destroy Hamas’ terrorist capabilities. It uses various military and technological means. So far, the army says it has discovered 800 tunnel shafts. She claims to have destroyed around 500 of them by now.

Two microphones with the logo of the first

Sources of information for Middle East reporting

The ARD reports from several studios on developments in the Middle East. In Tel Aviv, a total of five TV and radio correspondents follow developments in Israel and the Palestinian territories. A total of five correspondents also report from Cairo on the situation in Israel’s neighboring states. Reporting on Iran, which also plays an important role in the Middle East conflict, is provided by ARD Studio Istanbul perceived. In addition to their own experiences on site, the correspondents’ assessment is based on a large number of conversations with regional experts and observation of regional media and agencies. In the individual countries that the studios report on and the Palestinian territories, local freelancers, so-called “stringers”, are also employed ARD who provide the studios with additional information about the latest developments, provide correspondents with people to talk to, obtain original sound bites and accompany them on reporting trips.

Björn Dake, ARD Tel Aviv, tagesschau, December 5th, 2023 1:04 p.m

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