October 31, 2023 | Israel at War Situation Report
Israel SitRep: Oct. 31, 2023
October 31, 2023 Israel at War Situation Report
Israel SitRep: Oct. 31, 2023
Today’s Issue: Israeli Air Defenses Intercept Houthi Attack | IDF Rescues Soldier Taken Hostage on October 7 | Operations in Gaza | Activity on the Northern Front | Latest FDD Analysis
Israeli Air Defenses Intercept Houthi Attack: For the first time during the current war, Israel employed its “Arrow” long-range air defense system to intercept a surface-to-surface missile launched from the vicinity of the Red Sea on the morning of October 31. In a televised statement, a spokesman for Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attack, their third since the start of the war. Tehran has armed, trained, and equipped the Houthis, who are part of the Iranian-led “Axis of Resistance” committed to destroying Israel.
IDF Rescues Soldier Taken Hostage on October 7: An IDF ground operation in the Gaza Strip led to the rescue of a female soldier, Uri Magidish, initially taken hostage by Hamas from Nahal Oz on October 7. The IDF shared a photo of Magidish reunited with her family and said a medical examination showed her to be well. Defense Minister Yoav Gallant described the rescue as “proof our ability to reach the hostages.” Also on October 30, Hamas released a video of three Israeli female hostages, in which they accuse Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of failing to protect Israeli citizens. The Prime Minister’s Office responded that this exploitation of the hostages amounted to “cruel psychological propaganda.” The IDF said the number of captives now in Hamas’s hands is 240.
Operations in Gaza: On October 31, the IDF announced it had struck 300 targets in the Gaza Strip over the past 24 hours, including terror tunnels, Hamas military compounds, and launch positions for anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM) and rockets. The strikes resulted in the death of Nasim Abu Ajina, commander of the Beit Lahia battalion in Hamas’ Northern Division, who oversaw the October 7 assault against the Israeli communities of Erez and Netiv HaAsara. Abu Ajina was previously involved in Hamas’ Air Unit and helped develop UAVs and paragliding capabilities. Israeli security forces also announced it had shot dead an infiltrator who crossed into Israel from Gaza, intercepting him near the Reim Interchange.
Activity on the Northern Front: On October 30, Israeli forces attacked a terror cell inside Lebanon that sought to launch mortars into Israel. The IDF also said it attacked Hezbollah military sites in Lebanon. Both announcements included aerial footage of the attacks. On the following day, in the northern Israeli towns of Sakhnin and Arraba, police arrested three residents on suspicion of links to the Islamic State and of preparation to carry out “security activities.”
Latest FDD Analysis:
“Studying War Some More,” Clifford D. May and Andrew Roberts, FDD’s Foreign Podicy
“Press Hamas’s state sponsors to end the war,” Jonathan Schanzer, Washington Examiner
“10 Things to Know About Hamas and Hospitals,” FDD Experts, FDD Insight
“Prepare for an Iranian Escalation,” Reuel Marc Gerecht and Ray Takeyh, The Wall Street Journal
“What Happens to Gaza If Hamas Is Actually Defeated?” Hussain Abdul-Hussain, The Daily Beast
“Israel’s Proportional and Humanitarian Response,” Sinan Ciddi and David May, The National Interest
“How Hamas Angled for Russia-China Support,” Seth J. Frantzman, The National Interest
“Israel presses its offensive into Gaza,” Seth J. Frantzman, FDD’s Long War Journal
“Arab news reports claim: Israel’s ground op could cut Hamas control of key road,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post
“IDF COGAT: ‘We are not in fight against civilians of Gaza’,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post
“The road to the ground war in Gaza – analysis,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post
“Israel Expands Offensive Around Gaza City,” FDD Experts, FDD Flash Brief
“Hezbollah Introduces New Missiles Into Conflict With Israel,” FDD Experts, FDD Flash Brief