Israel Weighs Major IDF Operation in Gaza

[Jerusalem Post] Yaakov Katz - Defense Minister Ehud Barak has consistently referred to an inevitable large-scale IDF ground operation in Gaza. There are several reasons why the operation has yet to be launched. From a tactical point of view, it is wintertime and when there are clouds in the skies it is difficult to get the maximum out of the IAF's fighter jets, attack helicopters, and reconnaissance drones. Captured IDF soldier Gilad Shalit is another factor. The operation into Gaza will have two primary goals: First, to significantly weaken Hamas by destroying its terrorist infrastructure and removing it from governmental power. The second goal - which has proven more urgent in recent weeks with the collapse of the Gaza-Egypt border wall - calls for reoccupying the Philadelphi corridor, sealing it off, and preventing the smuggling of weapons or terrorists into Gaza. The idea will be to slice up the Gaza Strip into several sections and to begin cleansing them of terrorists and terror infrastructure. This, however, will not be an easy task since Hamas has had more than two and a half years to build up its military and prepare.

2008-02-12 01:00:00

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