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Israel destroys vast Hamas attack tunnel

Israel destroys vast Hamas attack tunnel

Mile-long tunnel hidden beneath civilian infrastructure including fuel pipelines and border crossing used to ship civilian goods to Gaza

Israel destroyed a vast Hamas attack tunnel system that ran into Israel and Egypt. The third major cross-border tunnel destroyed in the past two months.

We reported on one of those prior tunnel destructions last October, Israel’s IDF Obliterates Gaza Attack Tunnel.

What made this tunnel important was that it ran under both the Israeli and Egyptian borders. Much as Hamas hides its rockets in civilian areas and uses civilians as human shields, these tunnels used critical civilian infrastructure as shiels. The tunnels ran under pipelines used to send fuel to Gaza, and underneath a key crossing into Israel through which most humanitarian supplies sent to Gaza are sent.

This video from the Israel Defense Forces shows the layout of the tunnel in relations to the borders and pipelines:

The Times of Israel reports:

The Israel Defense Forces on Sunday said it had destroyed a border-crossing Hamas attack tunnel, the third in recent months, that penetrated hundreds of meters into both Israeli and Egyptian territory from the Gaza Strip, in an airstrike in southern Gaza on Saturday night.

“We completed the destruction of a third terror tunnel,” spokesperson Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus told reporters early Sunday morning, denying claims made by Hamas that it was a smuggling tunnel.

The tunnel, which was constructed differently from most tunnels in Gaza, began in the city of Rafah and crossed into Israel under the Kerem Shalom Crossing, through which hundreds of trucks ordinarily cross into the coastal enclave with goods from Israel each day, he said.

“We understand this tunnel belongs to Hamas,” Conricus added, saying the military believed the terror group saw it as a “significant asset.”

That assessment came from the fact that the tunnel ran underneath the Gaza crossing, which was kept closed on Sunday, as well as below the gas and diesel pipelines into the Strip and a nearby IDF post, he said.

Tunnels have been a major strategic asset of Hamas and other terror groups, and were used with some effect during the 2014 Gaza conflict. Cross-border tunnels are frequently shown to visiting diplomats:

Amos Harel at Haaretz reports on the implications:

The destruction of the Hamas tunnel on the Gaza border Saturday night supports the conclusion that Israel has found a defense against the threat of attack tunnels under the Strip. Even if the defense isn’t perfect, it’s pretty effective. The tunnel that was identified and blown up over the weekend near the Kerem Shalom crossing, near where Egypt, Israel and Gaza meet, is reportedly the fourth to be found by Israel since October.

The latest tunnel demolition worsens Hamas’ dilemma on how it should act as Israel gradually deprives it of one of its main offensive assets. The finding of the latest tunnel isn’t directly related to the barrier that Israel has been putting up along the Gaza border. Saturday’s tunnel was found in an area where work on the barrier hasn’t yet begun.

But the combination of technology, intelligence and operational means, along with the planned completion of most of the security barrier by year-end, show that the clock is ticking for Hamas and Islamic Jihad. (The first tunnel destroyed belonged to the smaller Islamic Jihad.) As Hamas leaders’ would view them, the tunnels are a strategic project in which hundreds of millions of shekels have been invested over nearly a decade, involving thousands of laborers and fighters. And now all this may be going down the drain.

Beyond the strategic implications, that Hamas spends so much money and effort on building tunnels will be met with near silence from the UN and so-called human rights groups which complain about living conditions in Gaza. If Hamas was interested in improving the lives of Gazans, it would build homes and civilian infrastructure, not attack tunnels.


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Ah… The Obama Memorial Tunnel system. Funded by the USA through grants given by Iran.

1) Why bother with tunneling when my liberal friends insist barrier walls are not effective? Just build a bigger ladder right?

2) why did Israel destroy the tunnel? My liberal friends say Hamas will just dig a deeper one.

    Shane in reply to Fen. | January 14, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    The problem Fen is that Hamas’ cash is drying up. The cartels are a different story. Your liberal friends are right in that they will find a way, but if you could dry up the cartel’s cash then things will change.

    If only there was a way to do that …. hmmmmm

    Valerie in reply to Fen. | January 14, 2018 at 4:05 pm

    If I were an Israeli, I would let them dig and dig, until it was a-l-m-o-s-t done, and then destroy it. The objective is to waste as much of their “humanitarian aid” as possible.

Please tell me they collapsed the tunnel while it had a significant number of “travelers”.

Would that they hit oil under Israel while digging their tunnels.

    Arminius in reply to Anchovy. | January 16, 2018 at 2:46 pm

    The joke’s on them.

    “…The gas field is located roughly 130 kilometres (81 mi) west of Haifa in waters 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) deep in the Levantine basin, a rich hydrocarbon area in one of the world’s larger offshore gas finds of the past decade.[2][3][4] According to some commentators, the gas find has the potential to change Israel’s foreign relations with neighboring countries Turkey, and Egypt.[5] Together with the nearby Tamar gas field, the Leviathan field is seen as an opportunity for Israel to become a major energy player in the Middle East.[6] As of 2017, even by conservative estimates, Leviathan holds enough gas to meet Israel’s domestic needs for 40 years.[7]”

    Israel will be selling gas to Jordan. Which is another reason besides Iran and the Islamic State that Jordan wants the Palestinians to shut up about Jerusalem.

It was made to make sure there is a constant flow of humanitarian supplies.

The worst thing about the tunnels is, they use child labor.

Hamas lies to the world about needing concrete for construction. And then they kill kids.

And, I give you Obama.

I guess if Israel simply floods the tunnel with poison gas every day or so, the terrorists would simply use gas masks/suits.

And the UN would condemn Israel yet again.