Day Eleven Of Swords Of Iron
A ground invasion of Gaza still hangs in the balance.
Mia Schem, held hostage by Hamas.
The bombing of a hospital in Gaza was “absolutely unacceptable,” Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday, as federal officials confirmed Canada stands ready in Egypt to help people in the besieged territory get out amid a worsening humanitarian crisis. The World Health Organization also condemned the "attack". Evidence that the explosion was caused by a missile misfired by Islamic Jihad soon emerged. See: https://shakenterra.com/hamas-rocket-destroys-baptist-hospital-videos-prove
Air raid sirens wailed at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv earlier today while German Chancellor Olaf Scholz was boarding a flight to depart Israel. He and his delegation left the airplane to lie on the tarmac and cover their heads.
Israeli President Isaac Herzog said widespread accusations that Israel struck the hospital in Baptist Hospital in Gaza “a blood libel.”
“An Islamic Jihad missile has killed many Palestinians at a Gazan hospital — a place where lives should be saved,” Herzog tweeted. “Shame on the media who swallow the lies of Hamas and Islamic Jihad — broadcasting a 21st-century blood libel around the globe. Shame on the vile terrorists in Gaza who wilfully spill the blood of the innocent,” he wrote.
Humza Yousaf, Scotland's First Minister, offered to take in Palestinian refugees in Scotland.
Iranian officials told Al Jazeera that the Biden administration warned the Islamic Republic that "Iran's direct entry into the conflict will be met with direct American military action."
Protesters took to the streets in West Bank communities to denounce PA leader Mahmoud Abbas.
The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) has denied it is responsible for the explosion on the Al-Ahli Arabi Baptist hospital in Gaza that has been attributed to the Israeli air force, Reuters reported. According to Gazan health authorities, controlled by Hamas, at least 500 people have been killed by an explosion at the hospital. The death toll was likely to rise. A spokesperson for the Gaza civil defence put the number of killed at about 300. Video evidence indicates that the explosion may have been caused by misfired Hamas rocket that landed on the hospital. Video shared by Al Jazeera showed a conflaguration raging at the multi-storey building, with bodies scattered round. The Guardian newspaper wrote: "The hospital, which is owned by the Anglican church, was reportedly struck without any prior warning. It was previously hit by a rocket on Saturday." The explosion occured at 8:30 pm local time, around the same time Hamas was launching rockets at Israel, according to the IDF.
The IDF reported that an investigation was caused by a misfire, which The Guardian put to doubt, saying "... but the scale of the blast appears to be outside the militant group’s capabilities." I was the biggest loss of life, The Guardian claimed, in Gaza over the course of five wars.
Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said in a social media post that the incident was “an appalling and devastating loss of innocent lives”.
The hospital is run by the Anglican church.
Israel blamed the “failed rocket launch” on Islamic Jihad, which is affiliated with Hamas. “An analysis of IDF [Israeli Defense Forces] operational systems indicates that a barrage of rockets was fired by terrorists in Gaza, passing in close proximity to the Al Ahli hospital in Gaza at the time it was hit,” an IDF spokesperson said. "Intelligence from multiple sources we have in our hands indicates that Islamic Jihad is responsible for the failed rocket launch which hit the hospital in Gaza.”
“We did not strike that hospital,” IDF spokesman Jonathan Conricus told CNN. “We do not intentionally strike any sensitive facilities, and definitely not hospitals. We are very much aware of the presence of civilians.”
Russia and the United Arab Emirates have demanded a meeting of the United Nations security council on Oct. 18 to confer over the incident.
Violence has erupted between protesters and Palestinian security forces in several cities in the West Bank, according to Reuters. In Ramallah, security forces used stun grenades and tear gas to ward off protesters who threw rocks and called for the resignation of Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas. Reuters reported that there is anger in the streets over the explosion at the Baptist Hospital, which the PA called a “cold-blooded massacre” by Israel.
Video recorded in Jordan’s capital Amman indicates that protesters have overrun the Israeli embassy.
The foreign ministry of Turkey called the incident a “barbaric attack” by Israel. “We are deeply indignant that hundreds of Palestinians lost their lives and many more were injured as a result of the targeting of a hospital in Gaza today, and we condemn these barbaric attacks in the strongest terms,” the statement said.
Iran also issued a statement condemning the deaths and injuries to hundreds of “unarmed and defenseless people”. According to the foreign ministry, it was a "savage war crime”.
The foreign ministry of Qatar stated, “The expansion of Israeli attacks over the Gaza Strip to include hospitals, schools, and other population centers is a dangerous escalation”.
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau told the media, "The news coming out of Gaza is horrific and absolutely unacceptable… international law needs to be respected in this and in all cases. There are rules around wars and it’s not acceptable to hit a hospital”.
Egypt and Jordan both also condemned the incident in “the strongest possible terms”.
Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas canceled a planned meeting with President Biden following the destruction of the Gaza hospital. The meeting was due to take place in Amman, Jordan during Biden's upoming visit to the Middle East beginning on Oct. 18. Abbas will return to Ramallah, the seat of his government.
Health authorities in Gaza say at least 3,000 people have been killed in Israel’s bombardment since Oct.. 7.
There are reports suggesting that the mass casualty event at the Baptist Hospital in Gaza City was caused by a rocket misfired by the Hamas terrorist organization. No Israel Air Force activity was reported at the time and place, which coincided with a salvo of rockets launched at Israel. According to sources, 30-40% of Hamas' rockets misfire and land short in the Gaza Strip.
1400 Israelis have been murdered.
4010 Israelis have been injured.
199 Israeli hostages held in Gaza.
Despite many failed rocket launches and Hamas assaults that land in Gaza, and false reports from Hamas, Hamas claims an IDF attack was behind a deadly explosion at Baptist Hospital which killed hundreds. The global media is widely covering the claim from Gaza, a day before the arrival of U.S. President Joe Biden to Israel. Read more at https://www.ynetnews.com/article/bybbrb2zt
The expansion of the war between Israel and Hamas to multiple fronts, including Iran, could raise the price of oil from $90 to $150 per barrel, push inflation higher, and cut global GDP. Read more at https://www.calcalistech.com/ctechnews/article/skpw4ciwp
Classics scholar and political analyst Victor Davis Hanson wrote a column appearing on social media that provides a glossary of leftist deception, titled "Gaza and the Corruption of Language". He wrote: “'Apartheid'. Like most leftist smears, it reflects projection. Arab citizens inside Israel—over half of whom are Muslims—vote, run for office, and have organized political parties. As a fifth of the population, they enjoy more security, prosperity, and freedom than do their counterparts in the surrounding Arab nations.
In contrast, can one envision non-Arab Christian or Jewish residents of Gaza voting, running for office, forming political parties, or criticizing Hamas? This projected charge of apartheid, it applies to Hamas, which considers anyone other than Arab Muslims as inferiors to be kept out of Gaza." See the rest of the column here.
In 2022, Jews in the US suffered more hate crimes than Americans of other religious persuasions, according to the FBI. The agency reported 1,305 offenses committed against Jews last year, which was far more than the second-largest category, anti-Muslim crimes, of which there were 205. There were 775 cases of anti-Jewish destruction, damage or vandalism of property; 358 cases of intimidation; 103 cases of simple assault; 38 cases of aggravated assault; and eight cases of larceny or theft.
While the IDF is prepared for a ground invasion of Gaza, IDF spokesman Lt. Col. Richard Hecht suggested that it may be delayed. On Oct. 17, Hecht said the IDF is preparing for next steps, but would not further characterize what Israel will do. “We are preparing for the next stages of war. We haven’t said what they will be,” Hecht said in a press briefing. "Everybody’s talking about the ground offensive. It might be something different,” he added.
Israeli PM Netanyahu told German Chancellor Scholz in Tel Aviv that the Hamas terrorists ‘are the new Nazis,’ as rocket fire from Lebanon and Gaza continues. Scholz said at a news conference that Germany will always stand beside Israel, while citing his country's responsibility following the Holocaust. “As I said last week in the Bundestag, in hard times, Germany has only one place, and it is alongside Israel,” Scholz says. “It is very important to say this today here during these difficult times in Israel: Germany’s history and the responsibility it had for the Holocaust requires us to help maintain the security and existence of Israel.” Scholz also says that “no [outside] actor should see it as a good idea to intervene in this conflict.”
PM Netanyahu said Hamas's attack was “the worst crimes committed against Jews since the Holocaust… Hamas are the new Nazis, Hamas is ISIS, in some instances worse than Nazis.”
If these atrocities, he said, are “not stopped here, this savagery will reach you very soon.”
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said all Hamas terrorists who participated in thee Oct 7 attack must ‘surrender or die.’
Palestinian sources reported that 14 family members of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh were killed in an Israeli bombing raid on Gaza City. Reportedly, Haniyeh’s brother and nephew have been reportedly killed in the strike. Haniyeh himself is currently in Qatar.
The Israel Defense reported the total of 301 soldiers slain since Oct 7.
Some 100 Jewish groups condemned the murder of a 6-year-old boy of Palestinian parents in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois. Wadea Al Fayoume, 6, was allegedly murdered by his mother's landlord. The perpetrator allegedly said as he attacked "Muslims must die." The deed was immediately condemned by the Council on Islamic-American Relations. “This is a moment of deep Jewish pain, mourning the lives taken and praying for the safe release of the hostages in Gaza – and this pain and fear is compounded by a horrific rise in antisemitism here in the United States and around the globe,” the statement backed by Jewish groups.
“We also know that we are not the only ones being targeted in this moment. Our Muslim, Arab, and Palestinian American neighbors are facing bigotry, threats, and violence – including the despicable murder of a six-year-old child this weekend outside Chicago, by a man who reportedly espoused anti-Muslim hate,” the statement said. “Let us be unequivocally clear: The Jewish community rejects Islamophobia, anti-Arab hate, antisemitism, and all forms of bigotry. Particularly as extremists continue to exploit this moment, we are reminded that all of our communities’ safety and futures are inextricably linked — and recommit ourselves to fighting hate in all its forms.” “We stand in solidarity with all our neighbors under threat and urge our elected and civic leaders, law enforcement, schools and universities, and employers to make clear there will be zero tolerance for any act of hate,” the Jewish groups add.
The IDF intercepted with Iron Dome a drone on its way into Israeli airspace over the Lebanon border today. Sirens did not sound because no towns were threatened. On the same day, Hezbollah fired six anti-tank guided missiles at Israeli towns and military posts along the shared border, and two rockets were also fired at northern Israel today.
4,000 Gazan workers detained in Israel and will be investigated whether they helped Hamas with planning the October 7th terror operation.
The IDF told the Israeli public that it can expect Hamas to release more images of abducted Israelis being held by the terrorist group. On Oct 16, Hamas released a video of Franco-Israeli hostage Mia Schem, 21, that showed a medic bandaging a wounded arm. Schem was among those abducted at the desert rave in Kibbutz Re'im, where Hamas terrorists killed more tan 260 partying young people. The IDF and French President Macron condemend Hamas for the video of Schem, demanding her immediate release.
IDF spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said today that Israel expects more such videos. “This is psychological terror by Hamas against the citizens of Israel. We understand that there will be more videos like this. In this video, Hamas tries to present itself as a humanitarian organization while it is in fact a murderous terror group,” Hagari said.
“How did a 21-year-old girl who went to a party to dance, end up being kidnapped by a murderous terror group in the heart of Gaza?” he asked.
“I see that she’s very terrified, in a lot of pain, and I can see that she’s saying what they’re telling her to say,” said Kerem Schem, Mia’s mother, at a news conference.
The IDF killed a Hezbollah terrorist cell with a drone strike when the group attempted entry to Israel from Lebanon today. Hezbollah responded hours later by firing anti-tank missiles into Israel with little effect.
Israeli soldier monitored the group of four terrorists that approached the Israel-Lebanon frontier to place an explosive device at the barrier close to Hanita, a town on the north end of Israel.
The IDF announced that an Israeli bombing raid killed the leader of Hamas’s Central Gaza Brigade, Senior Commander Ayman Nofal. He died during a strike at Brueij in Gaza. The IDF claimed that the kill came through intelligence provided by Israeli security agency Shin Bet and Military ntelligence Directorate. The IDF said that Nofal had conducted “numerous attacks against Israel and security forces.”
The Commander of United States Central Command (CENTCOM), General Michael Kurilla has arrived this morning in Tel Aviv for several High Level Meetings with Israeli Chief of General Staff, Herzi Halevi alongside a number of other Defense and Military Officials; General Kurilla has said his Main Goal for this Visit will be determining what Military Aid that Israel currently requires Urgently and also how to prevent other Nations and Groups from getting involved with the War.
The UK prime minister’s office is urging Israel to turn the taps on and allow water to flow into Gaza, but stopped short of asserting that the UK believes the tactic to shut off the supply was in line with international law. According to PA Media, the PM's office told the media: “We continue to urge Israel as a democracy we work closely with to act within international law in their actions, I think they are taking steps to do that. We are in discussions and are keen to see water restored to the area. We want to do everything possible to relieve the unfolding humanitarian issues in Gaza. Water is an important part of that.” PM Sunak reportedly told his cabinet that Hamas terrorists were responsible for the "murder and suspected abduction of British nationals." A spokesperson said 10 British citizens are missing and may be abducted: "It's a dynamic situation. I think, sadly, the full details of this attack are still becoming clear."
A UN spokesperson had earlier expressed concern that Israel's evacuation order to Gazans and its "complete siege" of the enclave are crimes against humanity because they involve a "forcible transfer of civilians”.
Jordan will hold a four-party summit involving President Biden, as well as Jordanian, Egyptian, and Palestinian leaders to discuss the repercussions of a widening war in the region.
The deputy commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Ali Fadavi said on Iranian state media that: “The resistance front’s shocks against the Zionist regime will continue until this ‘cancerous tumour’ is eradicated from the world map. Another shockwave is on the way, if Israel does not end atrocities in Gaza.”
Spain's Socialist government dismissed Israeli claims that members of the Spanish coalition are aligned "with ISIS-style terrorism" after the ruling leftists criticized Israeli PM Netanyahu’s response to Hamas’s atrocities and suggesting Israeli forces are committing genocide and war crimes in Gaza. Spanish social rights minister Ione Belarra, who leads the Podemos party, suggested Spain should summon Netanyahu to the International Criminal Court to face war crimes charges. Belarra's Podemos colleague Irene Montero, Spain's equality minister, and Alberto Garzón, Spain’s acting consumer affairs minister, agreed with Belarra.
Israel’s embassy in Madrid issued an angry statement on the evening of Oct 16, accusing "certain elements” of Spain's coalition government of aligning with Hamas and endangering Spain's Jewish community. It called Spanish PM Sánchez to condemn his colleagues’ “shameful” comments. “These remarks are not only absolutely immoral, they also endanger the safety of Jewish communities in Spain, exposing them to the risk of a greater number of antisemitic attacks and incidents.”
the Spanish government responded forcefully, accusing the Israeli embassy of “spreading falsehoods” about cabinet members.
Spain will increase its humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip with a package worth €1m ($1.06 million) and may send even more, according to the country's acting foreign minister today.
Madrid Mayor Jose Luis Martinez-Almeida of the opposition Popular Party is supporting a motion in the city council a proposal by the allied Vox party to grant the Medal of Honor of the City of Madrid to the Israeli nation. He said that Spanish leftists "always cast suspicion on Israel, not on terrorists."
The European Parliament has introduced a Motion for a Resolution "on the despicable terrorist attacks of Hamas against Israel, Israel’s right to defend itself in line with humanitarian and international law and the humanitarian situation in Gaza"
Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, said on Oct. 16 that Christians in Gaza have decided to remain in the enclave rather than flee the northern sector for the south. During a video interview, Pizzaballa said that in Gaza City and its vicinity there are 500 Catholics of the Latin rite, 400 Orthodox, and about 300 Christians of other communions. He said they have been accounted for and are sheltering at Christian churches and facilities, including the YMCA. “But unfortunately all these facilities are in the Northern part [of the Gaza strip]. They have the freedom to choose whether to stay or to leave, and so far they have chosen to stay,” he said. Pizzaballa said some Christians have been wounded, but none killed. He added that Christians staying in identifiable Christian facilities are safer than they would be if they resorted to flee along exposed roads. Israel has requested all Gazans to leave the northern sector.
Catholics worldwide are responding to a call by Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem, to pray and fast for peace in the Holy Land. “On behalf of all the ordinaries of the Holy Land, I invite all parishes and religious communities to a day of fasting and prayer for peace and reconciliation,” Pizzaballa wrote last week. "We ask that on Tuesday, October 17, everyone hold a day of fasting, abstinence, and prayer. Let us organize prayer times with Eucharistic adoration and with the recitation of the Rosary to Our Blessed Virgin Mary. This is the way we all come together despite everything, and unite collectively in prayer, to deliver to God the Father our thirst for peace, justice, and reconciliation." Pizzaballa leads Catholics in Israel, and the approximately 200 in Gaza. Catholic bishops in the US also urged Catholics to participate, stating, “We join Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, and all the Ordinaries of the Holy Land in calling for a day of fasting, abstinence, and prayer on October 17th,” the U.S. Bishops wrote on social media.
On October 14, Jews in the US and elsewhere gathered to celebrate in synagogues to pray for peace and to express grief over violent attacks by Hamas terrorists in Israel. "More Jews were killed last Shabbat … than on any other day since the Holocaust," said Rabbi Daniel Fellman during a service at Temple Sinai in Pittsburgh. "It isn't that Hamas wants the destruction of Israel. It's that Hamas wants the destruction of you and me."
On Oct. 11, students at Houston's prestigious Rice University gathered to pray for peace. University President Reginald DesRoche and Provost Amy Dittmar joined Jewish students, faculty, and staff in a vigil of prayer outside the Rice Memorial Center. Rabbi Shmuli Slonim from Chabad at Rice began the vigil with a prayer of peace for Israel, while former Rice President David Leebron and Rabbi Kenny Weiss from Houston Hillel offered remark. Israeli student Yasha Zemel, a member of the men’s tennis team, offered a remembrance of a friend who died on Oct. 7 defending Israel from the terrorists.
Sirens wailed in Ashkelon in southern Israel, as well as central Israel, including Rishon Lezion, as Hamas missiles rained down and Israeli Iron Dome rockets responded defensively.
The IDF reported that an anti-tank guided missile entered Israel from Lebanon and that Israeli border posts received gunfire. The IDF responded with artillery and small-arms.
French President Macron is currently in Albania, but may soon visit Israel as soon as there is a “useful agenda and concrete actions to promote,” according to The Times of Israel. He said, “I want to be very cautious here… so as not to endanger the intense talks we are currently conducting,” Macron says. “But they are progressing and we are following these talks hour by hour.”
His comments followed a press conference by the mother of Franco-Israeli captive Mia Schem, who was abducted by Hamas.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz met with Jordanian King Abdullarh II in Berlin. Scholz is scheduled to meet with Israeli PM Netanyahu, War Cabinet Minister Benny Gantz, and Minister Gadi Eisenkot, in Isrel.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared "No one can stop resistance forces" if Israel continues to bomb Gaza. “If the crimes of the Zionist regime continue, Muslims and resistance forces will become impatient, and no one can stop them.” Khamenei said,“No matter what the Zionist regime does, it cannot make up for the scandalous failure it suffered.”
Israeli PM Netanyahu met Romanian Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu in Berlin, as well as Romanian Defense Minister Angel Tilvar. Ciolacu was the visit world leader to visit Israel following the deadly Hamas terror attack on Oct. 7.
Jordanian King Abdullah II met with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin, and warned, "The whole region is on the brink of falling into the abyss...All our efforts are needed to make sure we don't get there." However, Jordan is not admitting refugees from Gaza. Abdullah said, "On the issue of refugees coming to Jordan -- and I think I can quite strongly speak on behalf not only of Jordan as a nation but of our friends in Egypt -- that is a red line."
Iranian official radio network posted on social media, "The Victory of Allah is near," which followed Iranian FM Hossein Amirabdollahian warning of a "preemptive action" in the coming hours. Recently, he also threatened a “huge earthquake” should Israel continue its retaliation in Gaza. “I know about the scenarios that Hezbollah has put in place. Any step the resistance will take will cause a huge earthquake in the Zionist entity,” he said. “I want to warn the war criminals and those who support this entity before it’s too late to stop the crimes against civilians in Gaza, because it might be too late in a few hours.”
The shooter suspected in the murder of two Swedish soccer fans and wounding another in Belgium has been in turned killed by Brussels police. Police found an automatic weapon on the body of "neutralized" Abdesalem Al Guilani (45). The Tunisian Al Guilani released a video on Oct. 17 declaring himself a soldier of Islam before shooting unarmed people in the Belgian capital that evening. The man had sought asylum in Belgium in November 2019; He was known by police for involvement in human trafficking, and was residing illegal in Belgium. His application for asylum had been rejected.
The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) warned about what it sees as a potential rise in violence against Muslims and Palestinians in the US. This follows the murder of a six-year-old Muslim boy in Illinois. Wadea Al-Fayoume was stabbed to death and his mother wounded by their landlord in Plainfield, Illinois. Joseph Czuba, 71, reportedly shouted "Muslims must die!" when he erupted into the home, according to text messages shared by CAIR, the largest Muslim advocacy group in the US. CAIR attorney Edward Ahmed Mitchell said, “The murder of this young boy was an act of Palestinian and Muslim hatred. It was one of the worst-case scenarios that we were worried about.”Mitchell added: “This young boy has paid the price for the bigotry and hatred that others have spread. There are no words to describe what happened to him. But there are words to describe why it happened. And why it happened is anti-Palestinian racism, anti-Muslim bigotry, and it must stop."
According to NBC news, the boy's mother described Czuba as an "angry" man who last week demanded that she and her family vacate the premises. Czuba's wife reportedly said Czuba frequently listened to "conservative talk radio on a regular basis."
President Biden will visit Israel on Oct. 18 for talks with Israeli PM Netanyahu. This follows news that Israel and the US agreed on the provision of aid and creation of safe areas for 2 million Gazans under fire. Israel has cut access to food, water, and medical aid to most of the Gaza Strip. Biden will also go to Jordan for talks with King Abdullah, and to Egypt for talks with Egyptian president Sisis and PA president Abbas. Secretary of State Blinken announced the junket after nearly eight hours of talks with PM Netanayahu and Israeli national security personnel. The announcement was delayed until Israeli leaders agreed on humanitarian corridors for aid to enter Gaza, and the creation of safe areas free from Israeli bombing.
Joe Biden will travel to Israel on Wednesday after the US said it had reached agreement with Benjamin Netanyahu’s government on the provision of humanitarian relief and safe areas to the more than 2 million people in Gaza currently under fire, and in urgent need of water, food and medical help.
Hamas terrorists distributed a video of a Franco-Israeli woman now held hostage by the Islamic terrorists. 21-year-old Mia Schem was among those abducted by the terrorists, and she appears in a video while her injured arm was treated by a medical worker. She asked to be returned to her family. On Oct. 17, French president Macron described the video as an "odious act." He said, “It is an ignominy to take innocent people hostage and put them on show in this odious way,” the presidential palace quoted Macron as saying. It added that France was “working with its partners to free French hostages held by Hamas”. He also called for the unconditional release of the reportedly 250+ hostages.
According to forensic scientists, hundreds of the bodies of Israelis slain by Hamas terrorists may never be positively identified.
Israeli Merkava battle tanks were seen assembling near Israel's border with Gaza. No invasion has ensued.