Israel launched an airstrike Saturday that eliminated several senior Hamas terrorist officials in the city of Rafah — while the world attempts to dissuade Israel from launching a broader ground offensive in Rafah, the last stronghold of the terrorist organization.
בהכוונה מודיעינית של שב״כ ואמ״ן, כלי טיס חיסלו מוקדם יותר היום במרחב רפיח, את אחמד אליעקובי, פעיל חמאס אשר היה אחראי על סידורי האבטחה של בכירי חמאס ושימש כמנהל בכיר בבולשת של מחוז רפיח>> pic.twitter.com/KiHRT6Doqz
— צבא ההגנה לישראל (@idfonline) February 10, 2024
In a joint statement, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and Israel Security Agency (or Shin Bet, or Shabak) said on Saturday:
Earlier today, following IDF and ISA intelligence, aircraft struck and eliminated Ahmed Eliakubi, a senior Hamas operative in the area of Rafah. Eliakubi was responsible for the security provisions for senior Hamas leaders and served as a senior commander in the Rafah district. During the strike, Iman Rantisi, a Hamas senior military operative was eliminated, and an additional operative was killed.
The Hamas leaders may have been lulled into a false sense of security due to the public opposition of the U.S. and other countries to an Israeli military operation in Rafah, given the large number of Palestinian civilians who have taken refuge there.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered the military to prepare a plan to evacuate the civilians and then destroy what remains of Hamas.
Meanwhile, the IDF is said to be dropping leaflets in Gaza, featuring a photograph of the son of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh enjoying a soccer match in the Qatari capital of Doha recently:
While Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh is sending his terrorists to their deaths and the residents of Gaza to live in ruins – his son is celebrating at a football match in Qatar in the Asian Cup in the VIP stands… pic.twitter.com/SvZUwt0Ufs
— יוסף חדאד – Yoseph Haddad (@YosephHaddad) February 8, 2024
The Times of Israel reported Saturday that Netanyahu is said to believe Israel has one month in which to destroy Hamas in Rafah before global pressure becomes too great to resist.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.