Israel continued pressing its Gaza offensive in the new year, killing a Hamas commander in an airstrike and pounding more of the terrorist group’s infrastructure, the Israel Defense Forces said on Monday morning.
An air force fighter jet directed by ground forces killed Adil Mismah, the Nukhba company commander in Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip.
Mismah commanded the terrorists of this elite company who attacked Kibbutz Kissufim on Oct. 7, where eight residents and six Thai workers were murdered, and at least four people were abducted. Mismah directed other Hamas terrorists to communities near the Gaza border, including Kibbutz Be’eri and Kibbutz Nirim, where a total of 135 Israelis were murdered.
Some 1,200 persons, mostly civilians, were murdered on Oct. 7 when waves of Hamas terrorists led by the elite Nuhkba forces stormed across the border, rampaging across the northwestern Negev. Thousands more were wounded and at least 240 taken hostage. The terrorists committed acts of rape, sexual abuse, burning people alive, torture, mutilation and desecrating the dead.
After the IDF invaded Gaza 20 days later, Mismah continued to lead attacks against Israeli forces.
In Gaza City’s Shejaia neighborhood over the weekend, Israeli soldiers raided a command and control center used by both Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
The soldiers also discovered many weapons inside a mosque.
Ground forces also directed air strikes on a Hamas squad near Khan Yunis launching rockets, and against terrorists who fired a mortar at soldiers. The terrorists in both strikes were killed.
During the night, Israeli naval forces struck terror infrastructure and other Hamas positions in support of ground forces.
IDF: 10% of Gaza fatalities from ‘friendly fire’
Since the start of the Gaza ground operations on Oct. 27, 18 out of the 170 soldiers slain died as a result of “friendly fire,” the military said.
In total, 29 soldiers were killed in accidental incidents in the Gaza Strip—two from stray bullets and nine from being run over, and 18 from explosions from IDF fighters and bullet discharges from the weapons of soldiers.
Additionally, two soldiers in the northern front and two troops in Judea and Samaria were killed in operational accidents, bringing the total number of accidental deaths on all fronts since the start of the Gaza war to 33.
IDF chief holds situation assessment in south Gaza
IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi held a situational assessment in Khirbat Ikhza’a, aka Khuza’a, the town in the southern Gaza Strip from which terrorists descended on Kibbutz Nir Oz during the Oct. 7 massacre.
“We are both killing the terrorists who participated [in the Nir Oz massacre] and killing the terrorists who will want to commit terrorism in the future. And we are organizing a security space here so that the return to Nir Oz will be safe, and will be safe for many, many years, and that’s how it should work,” Halevi said.
“Every move you make, you will receive the strongest possible fire support for it,” he told the troops.
Halevi was joined by the commander of the Gaza Division, Brig. Gen. Avi Rosenfeld, and the commander of the 5th “Sharon” (reserve) Infantry Brigade, Col. Tal Koritzky.