Israel will fight until it is victorious, its defense minister, Yoav Gallant, said on Thursday.
During a visit to an Israel Defense Forces staging area near the border with the Gaza Strip where he met with soldiers, Gallant said: “I see the determination, the spirit of battle, and above all, the motivation to carry out everything needed to defeat Hamas, to eliminate terrorist infrastructure, and to execute the mission as needed.”
Israel has been attacking Hamas targets from the air since the Oct. 7 massacre that killed more than 1,400 people, and has been amassing troops and equipment on the Gaza border in anticipation of a ground invasion.
“I’m responsible for the defense establishment. I have been responsible for it for the past two weeks, during the difficult events as well. I am responsible for bringing it to victory in battle,” Gallant said.
“We will be exact, sharp, deadly, and we will continue until we completely execute the mission,” he said.
“You now see Gaza from afar, soon you will see it from the inside,” Gallant told troops along the border. “The order will come.”
Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkelman, the head of the IDF Southern Command, said on Thursday that the military’s anticipated ground offensive in Gaza will be “difficult, long and intense.”
“This war was forced on us, with a cruel enemy that harmed us greatly. But we are striking them heavily,” said Finkelman. “Now, we will move the fighting to their territory. We are going to beat them on their own territory.”