Third phase of the ground operation: Israel's comprehensive plan along Gaza and Lebanon

News Bulletin Reports
2024-01-02 | 11:52
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Third phase of the ground operation: Israel's comprehensive plan along Gaza and Lebanon
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3min
Third phase of the ground operation: Israel's comprehensive plan along Gaza and Lebanon

In a significant move signaling the start of the third phase of the Israeli ground operation in the Gaza Strip, the army has started withdrawing brigades from the region. Seven divisions are set to leave the sector from today until early next week, including two reserve units.

The decision comes following understandings reached by the Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister, Ron Dermer, in Washington with US officials. These discussions are expected to result in a reduction in the scale and nature of the operations.

The Israeli army clarified that the withdrawal decision is purely Israeli, emphasizing that the Southern Command will continue operations with a new combat style involving precise actions challenging for Hamas fighters to anticipate.

As US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived, the Ministerial Security Cabinet discussed the army's plan for the day following the Gaza war.

The plan proposes dividing the Strip into tribal-controlled areas known to the army and the Shin Bet security agency. These areas will be responsible for temporarily distributing humanitarian aid and managing civilian life.

While the cabinet considers proposals on the international body overseeing Gaza, right-wing ministers, led by Finance Minister Smotrich, reject any role for the Palestinian Authority.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, previously adamant on this matter, suggested that the PA needs to undergo significant changes before entering the Strip.

Military and security experts are skeptical about the army's plan, questioning Israel's assumption of tribal divisions. Simultaneously, the government has laid out a plan to ensure the security of residents along the southern and northern borders, offering financial incentives for their return.

The comprehensive plan includes doubling the number of military units along the borders and deploying armed civilians in towns. For the southern area facing Gaza, barriers will encircle the region, and surveillance cameras will be installed.

To the north, facing Lebanon, the plan involves constructing a new engineering obstacle at the border to prevent infiltration by Hezbollah fighters. This aims to prevent infiltration by Al-Radwan forces and build a wall extending from Mount Hermon to Rosh Hanikra, with equipment and sensors to prevent anti-tank missiles from reaching border areas.

Military officials suggest that if diplomatic efforts fail and Hezbollah does not withdraw from the border area, Israel is prepared for a broad aerial attack and potentially an advanced ground maneuver in southern Lebanon.

Lebanon News

News Bulletin Reports

Middle East News

Phase

Ground

Operation

Israel

Plan

Gaza

Lebanon

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