IDF to Remove Five Brigades from Gaza Fight as Captured Gazans Admit Hamas Mistreatment

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JERUSALEM, Israel – Israel’s war in the Gaza Strip is shifting into a new phase as warships in the Middle East also change positions and Hamas members admitted to Israeli interrogators that they used civilians as human shields.

The Israel Defense Forces announced that five brigades from combat will be released in the Gaza Strip as the military gains more control on the ground.

However, the military made clear that the war against Hamas will likely continue in different phases throughout 2024.

As the IDF lowers the intensity of the fighting in northern Gaza, Israelis in six communities within a few miles of the Gaza Strip will be allowed to return to their homes after being evacuated following the Hamas massacre on October 7th.

“In accordance with the recommendations given by the IDF and the defense establishment, we will soon be able to return communities home, in areas within a range of four to seven kilometers north of the Gaza Strip to their home,” announced Defense Minister Yoav Gallant. “(The) first phase of seven communities was already decided, they received messages. Kibbutz Dorot where we are right now, is one of them.”

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Meanwhile, Israel’s High Court of Justice struck down the Basic Law passed by the Knesset to remove some of the Supreme Court’s power. The law would forbid justices to negate a law because they don’t find it “reasonable.” The high court voted 8-7 against the law, which fueled months of anti-government protests.

Justice Minister Yariv Levin criticized the decision and said the ruling would not “stay our hand.”

However, National Unity Party leader Benny Gantz, who is currently a member of the emergency government, said the ruling must be respected and that the battle over the decision should take place after the war.

As some soldiers begin to leave Gaza, the USS Gerald Ford aircraft carrier is returning home to Virginia after an extended deployment. The Ford was sent to the eastern Mediterranean to be within striking distance of Hamas and Hezbollah after the October 7th massacre.

Its accompanying warships had sailed into the Red Sea, where they repeatedly intercepted ballistic missiles and drones fired from Iranian-backed Houthi rebels. While the U.S. carrier prepares to leave, Iran dispatched a warship to the Red Sea after the U.S. Navy destroyed 3 Houthi boats this week.

In the north, Israeli fighter jets struck terrorist infrastructure in southern Lebanon on Monday and Tuesday, where Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorists were operating.

And in Syria overnight, the IDF hit military targets belonging to the Syrian army after 5 launches into Israeli territory were identified.

Back in Gaza, fighting continued, as described by IDF Spokesman, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari.

“During the operation in Khan Younis, our forces identified suspects who were hiding among women and children. During interrogation, it was revealed that they were terrorists, some of whom participated in the terrorist attack on October 7th. Whether the terrorists are hiding in tunnels, hospitals, or by civilians, we will reach them,” he said.

The IDF released footage of two Gazans who were arrested and interrogated.

An Islamic Jihad member admitted that Hamas stopped Gazans from evacuating to the south, and instead transferred them to the Al-Shifa Hospital. The terrorists stayed underground there until they realized that the IDF was coming, then they mingled with the civilians, hiding among them. 

The second told a story about a family who asked a Hamas operative not to plant a bomb by his apartment, where his children were inside. The terrorist told him he would put it between him and his wife instead, and when he argued more, the Hamas man shot him in the leg. 

Another video was found in the camera of a Hamas terrorist who was killed. It showed how Hamas hid an RPG anti-tank missile in a blanket and used it to destroy 3 tanks.

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