Kamis 09 Nov 2023 09:00 WIB

Al-Qassam Brigades Crushed 136 Invader Tanks

Prisoner exchange was the way to reach a ceasefire in Gaza.

 An explosion following an air strike on the northern part of the Gaza Strip, as seen from Sderot, southern Israel, 08 November 2023.
An explosion following an air strike on the northern part of the Gaza Strip, as seen from Sderot, southern Israel, 08 November 2023.

GAZA — The al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Hamas group, announced a surprise achievement in its operation against the Israeli occupation forces (IDF). In 10 days of Israeli ground offensive, the al-Qassam Brigades managed to destroy 136 IDF tanks and combat vehicles.

“We have documented the destruction of 136 Israeli military vehicles, either in whole or in part, since the start of the Israeli ground operation,” al-Qassam Brigades spokesman Abu Abu Obeida said in a broadcast reported on Al-Aqsa TV on Wednesday (8/11/2023) evening.

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He later proved that claim by broadcasting videos of the destruction of Israeli tanks in Gaza throughout Tuesday (7/11/2023) and Wednesday (8/11/2023). Hamas fighters were seen carrying out a firefight to clear the way for Yassin 105 antitank missile gunners who then blew up a number of Israeli tanks.

“This is but a small fraction of what our fighters have done and continue to do in the field with the strength and company of Allah.,” Abu Obeida said.


He also stressed that efforts to free hostages held by Hamas have so far been hampered by Israeli bombardment. This follows the disclosure by the New York Times that Hamas had previously been willing to free 50 hostages but was stymied by an Israeli ground offensive. “The enemies (of Israel) obstructed the release of our foreign prisoners by intensifying airstrikes and carrying out massacres, as they blocked the release of 12 foreign prisoners a few days ago,” he added.

He also said the prisoner exchange was the way to reach a ceasefire in Gaza. “Our only approach is a comprehensive agreement for prisoner exchanges, either in whole or in part, or group by group. We have female prisoners, elderly people, and those with poor health conditions in occupied prisons, just as they also have prisoners of similar categories.“

During Operation al-Aqsa Storm on October 7, Hamas arrested some 242 Israeli citizens for a possible exchange in exchange for about 6,000 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails, according to official statistics.

Anadolu Agency reported that as a form of protest, the families of Israeli prisoners demanded that their loved ones be returned immediately, often voicing their anger against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government.

Abu Ubaida added that despite the massacres and violent bombings, “we maneuvered and engaged with the enemy of Israel at close range. Abu Ubaidah also promised broader resistance to Israeli occupiers throughout the colonized Palestinian territories.

“We bring good news to the occupiers regarding the coming phase of anger and resistance in the West Bank, Gaza, and Al-Quds (Jerusalem), and on all fronts, with the help of Allah. We continue our resistance to this aggression on all fronts, and our fighters await the enemy.“

The Guardian reported, “Israeli air strikes in Gaza have killed dozens of Hamas commanders as forces advance further into hard-hit territory, with some fighting in the “heart of Gaza City”,” IDF officials and analysts said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his forces were strangling Gaza and forcing Hamas to hold on to the north. About 700,000 Gazans have been displaced from the northern region.

However, there are doubts over the significance of the deaths of commanders in Hamas, and analysts say there are no clear signs that the organization has been significantly weakened.

Israeli leaders vowed to destroy Hamas after the organization launched an offensive from Gaza into southern Israel, which it claimed killed 1,400 servicemen and civilians. Since then, Israeli ground and air strikes have wreaked massive destruction in Gaza, causing at least 1.3 million people to be displaced and killing 10,569 people -- including 4,324 children and 2,823 women. Analysts say the mission of the Israeli armed forces is to kill all senior Hamas leaders, to destroy their capacity in posing future threats. 

Israel also claims to have destroyed some 130 Hamas tunnels in the Gaza Strip since launching a ground operation last month. So far, citing IDF announcements that Hamas doubts its accuracy, at least 33 occupation troops have been killed in ground attacks and hundreds more have been wounded.

Hamas denied Israeli forces had made any major progress. “I challenge [Israel] whether up to this point they have been able to record any military achievements on the ground other than killing civilians,” senior Hamas official Ghazi Hamad told Algerian television.

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