Saturday, January 3, 2009

The ground offensive has started in Gaza

I thought the Israeli's would take a diplomatic approach after pounding Hamas into the ground from the air. It looks like they are going for a death blow against Hamas in Gaza. Reports are limited, but some kind of ground incursion has begun.

Last update - 21:00 03/01/2009
IDF ground troops trade fire with Hamas militants
By Amos Harel, Yoav Stern and Yanir Yagana, Haaretz Correspondents, and News Agencies

Israel entered the second week of its offensive against rockets from Hamas-ruled Gaza on Saturday evening by launching a much-expected ground operation into the coastal strip.

Shortly after the ground operation began, a heavy exchange of fire was reported between Israeli troops and Hamas militants inside the Gaza Strip.

"The objective is to destroy the Hamas terror infrastructure in the area of operations," said Israel Defense Forces Major Avital Leibovitch, a military spokeswoman, confirming that incursions were under way. "We are going to take some of the launch areas used by Hamas."

The IDF Spokesperson's office issued a statement, emphasizing that this stage of the operation will further the goals of the eight-day offensive as voiced by the IDF until now: To strike a direct and hard blow against the Hamas while increasing the deterrent strength of the IDF, in order to bring about an improved and more stable security situation for residents of Southern Israel over the long term. Full story here.

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