Israeli Airstrikes Intensify
Israel yesterday increased its mobilization of reservists to 360,000—the largest call-up since the country’s founding—as its military continued to launch airstrikes into the sealed-off Gaza Strip following Hamas' surprise attack in Israel Saturday. Israeli airstrikes destroyed Gaza's upscale Rimal neighborhood (see footage) and home to ministries of the Hamas-run government, and regained control of two dozen border towns. Hamas' rockets targeted Tel Aviv and the coastal town of Ashkelon. See the latest updates here.
The death toll in Israel has risen to more than 1,000, including at least 750 civilians and 14 Americans, with at least 2,600 wounded. At least 20 Americans are still unaccounted for in Israel, US President Joe Biden said yesterday. The Israeli military said it had found the bodies of roughly 1,500 Hamas assailants. In Gaza, at least 900 have died with 4,500 wounded. See the conflict in maps here.
Additionally, Israel said it intercepted four of 15 rockets launched from Lebanon, with which it shares a northern border, and that tanks from Israeli forces struck three Hezbollah observation posts. Hezbollah and Hamas are both backed by Iran. Israel also carried out artillery strikes in Syria, with which it shares a northeast border, after a Palestinian faction launched rockets into Israel. Observers say concerns are growing over a wider regional conflict.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is expected to arrive in Israel tomorrow in a show of support. The first plane carrying US ammunition arrived in Israel yesterday; Israel has asked the US for more weapons, including interceptors for its Iron Dome missile defense system (see visual overview).