April 7, 2024 | Flash Brief

Six Months Into War, Israel Withdraws Division From Gaza

April 7, 2024 | Flash Brief

Six Months Into War, Israel Withdraws Division From Gaza

Latest Developments

Six months into the Gaza war, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said on April 7 that it had withdrawn its 98th Division from the coastal strip. This is a “major scaledown,” reported Israel’s Ynet about the unit’s rotation from Gaza. “This marks a further reduction of IDF forces in Gaza. Currently, the Nahal Brigade, which holds Road 749 bisecting the enclave, remains the only unit still operating there,” Ynet added. The IDF’s 7th Armored Brigade operating in Khan Younis also began withdrawing on April 6, the media outlet said. The 98th Division includes Israel’s Commando Brigade, which has been fighting terrorists in various neighborhoods of Khan Younis. Most recently, the brigade uncovered a 900-meter terror tunnel in the Amal neighborhood of Khan Younis, said the IDF on April 7.

Expert Analysis

“Israel has secured impressive achievements in the war in Gaza against Hamas and other terrorist groups. The IDF has eliminated thousands of terrorists and destroyed a large amount of Hamas terrorist infrastructure, such as tunnels. Additionally, many key Hamas commanders have been eliminated. However, Hamas and other terror groups continue to pose a threat. Hamas controls the southern Gaza city of Rafah in addition to areas in central Gaza. It is essential Israel receives the support necessary to continue to fight and defeat Hamas.” — Seth J. Frantzman, FDD Adjunct Fellow

“The significant IDF draw-down in Gaza indicates that Israel may be — at least temporarily — focused elsewhere. The news comes at a time when Israel is on high alert for an attack by Iran or Iranian proxies, at a potentially critical moment for the hostage negotiations, and as Jerusalem is negotiating with Washington about what an operation in Rafah may look like. While there may be a period of less fighting in Gaza, there are major forces at work, and this war is far from over.” — Enia Krivine, Senior Director of FDD’s Israel Program and National Security Network

Israel Says 13,000 Terrorists Killed In Gaza War

The IDF said on April 7 that it has killed more than 13,000 terrorists in six months of fighting since Hamas’s October 7 attack on Israel. The IDF said it had eliminated 20 Hamas battalion commanders and five Hamas brigade commanders. Israel has struck 32,000 targets in Gaza since the war began, it says. More than 9,100 projectiles, mostly rockets, have been fired from Gaza at Israel. In Lebanon, Israel has eliminated 30 Hezbollah commanders and struck 4,700 targets. Terrorists in Lebanon have fired 3,100 projectiles at Israel.

A total of 604 IDF soldiers, reservists, and local security officers have been killed since October 7. Of these, 260 died while fighting in Gaza, including four soldiers on April 6. Additionally, nearly 3,200 Israeli soldiers have been wounded since the war began. The six-month anniversary of the Hamas attack on Israel has also been marked by ceremonies and events in Israel to memorialize the October 7 massacre sites.

Palestinian Terrorist Confesses to October 7 Rape,” FDD Flash Brief

IDF Raid on Gaza Hospital Captures Largest Number of Terrorists Since War Began,” FDD Flash Brief

Israel on Alert for Iranian Strikes After Damascus Blast,” FDD Flash Brief


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