December 12, 2023 | Israel at War Situation Report

Israel SitRep: Dec. 12, 2023

December 12, 2023 Israel at War Situation Report

Israel SitRep: Dec. 12, 2023

Today’s Issue: Defense Minister Gallant: Israel Has Encircled ‘Last Hamas Strongholds in Jabalya and Shejaiya’ | IDF Operated Overnight in Jenin in West Bank | Tanker Transiting Bab al-Mandab Hit by Houthi Missile | Shin Bet Releases Video of Hamas Official’s Interrogation | Latest FDD Analysis

Defense Minister Gallant: Israel Has Encircled ‘Last Hamas Strongholds in Jabalya and Shejaiya’: With heavy fighting taking place in and around Khan Younis, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant stated in a press conference on Monday that Israel has “encircled the last strongholds of Hamas in Jabalya and Shejaiya.” He added that “the battalions that were considered invincible, that prepared for years to fight us, are on the verge of being dismantled.” According to Gallant, in the past few days, hundreds of Hamas operatives have surrendered to IDF forces. The IDF issued a statement on Monday saying that in the past month, the army, working with the Shin Bet, has arrested more than 350 operatives from Hamas and more than 120 from Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Since the end of the ceasefire, according to the IDF, they have arrested some 140 Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad operatives in Gaza. The statement notes that some of the men surrendered voluntarily and were taken for interrogation.

IDF Operated Overnight in Jenin in West Bank: According to Hebrew media reports, at least four terrorists were killed Tuesday morning in a battle with Israeli forces in Jenin. The forces, who were engaged in a counter-terror operation, were attacked with explosives, firebombs, and gunfire, and an IDF drone hit the terrorists, killing the men. The IDF issued a statement saying that overnight, the army, the Shin Bet, and the Border Police undertook a counter-terror operation in the Jenin area, working to uncover explosive devices buried under roads that were intended to harm Israeli forces. It added that they located weapons, ammunition, and explosive devices and destroyed a laboratory with explosives that were ready to be used.

Tanker Transiting Bab al-Mandab Hit by Houthi Missile: On Monday, U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) issued a statement noting that a missile attack took place in the Bab al-Mandab Strait at about 4 p.m. EST against the Strinda motor tanker, which is Norwegian. The missile caused a fire on the tanker but no casualties. CENTCOM believes that the anti-ship cruise missile that hit the tanker was fired from a Houthi-controlled area of Yemen. Its statement noted that the USS Mason responded to the Strinda’s distress call and rendered assistance. Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Sare’e claimed that the vessel “was loaded with oil and headed to the Israeli entity,” but Mowinckel Chemical Tankers, which owns the Strinda, said it was sailing to Italy and its cargo was palm oil. According to the website of Ashdod Port in Israel, the vessel was scheduled to dock in Ashdod on January 4.

Shin Bet Releases Video of Hamas Official’s Interrogation: On Sunday, the Shin Bet published a video showing the interrogation of Yousef al-Mansi, former Hamas communications minister, in which he called the group’s leadership “crazy.” He stated that Yahya Sinwar, Hamas’s leader in Gaza, has “delusions of grandeur” and “makes decisions without consulting anyone.” According to al-Mansi, “They destroyed the Gaza Strip. Set it back 200 years.” He added: “There is no opportunity to live.” Speaking about Hamas’s October 7 attacks, al-Mansi called them “heresy, madness,” adding, “What they did is unacceptable according to logic, religion, or intellect.” Al-Mansi blamed “Sinwar and his group,” noting that all of Gaza was paying the price for the attack.

Latest FDD Analysis:

“The White House partnered with CAIR to fight antisemitism — despite its antisemitism,” Hussain Abdul-Hussain, New York Post

“Does the Resistance Axis believe its propaganda about Israel? The October 7 attack seems to suggest so.” David Daoud, IranSource

“From Pause Back to Fighting: Report from the Gaza Front,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Strategic Tribune

“Reporter’s Notebook: Life in northern Israel amid Hezbollah tensions,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post

“Why does France’s interception of Houthi drones in Red Sea matter?” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post

“Iran claims to have armed its Karar drones with missiles,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post

“Iran regime attacks ‘Zionist lobby’ in US over campus disputes,” Seth J. Frantzman, The Jerusalem Post

“Israel at War: December 11, 2023,” Joe Truzman, Bill Roggio, and Seth J. Frantzman, Generation Jihad (by FDD’s Long War Journal)

“Israel solidifies gains in Gaza, threats grow in north,” Seth J. Frantzman, FDD’s Long War Journal

“Hezbollah escalates as rockets target Tel Aviv,” Seth J. Frantzman, FDD’s Long War Journal

“Son of Hezbollah commander behind establishment of Iraqi militias reported killed in Israeli airstrike,” Joe Truzman and Bill Roggio, FDD’s Long War Journal

“IDF Continues Terror Target Strikes in Gaza,” FDD Experts, FDD Flash Brief

“Hezbollah Wounds Six Israeli Soldiers as Clashes Continue,” FDD Experts, FDD Flash Brief

“Hamas in Northern Gaza at Breaking Point, Israel Says,” FDD Experts, FDD Flash Brief

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