At dawn on Shabbat, Saturday October 7, 2023, dozens Hamas terrorists invaded Israel, firing some 5,000 rockets and flooding over the border where they battled local residents of southern Israeli towns and also at the Re'im military base.
Israeli residents reported to news outlets that the terrorists were going door-to-door, shooting and kidnapping people. They had invaded in a multi-front attack by land, sea and air.
Initially taken by surprise, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) by later in the morning were responding in force and had launched "Operation Swords of Iron."
Mohammed Deif, the Hamas military commander in Gaza, called for an all-out attack against Israel in a social media post early Saturday morning. He called on Arabs and Muslims in Judea and Samaria to carry out attacks against Israel, repeating the well-worn trope that "'the enemy' had attacked and desecrated al-Aqsa," on the Temple Mount.
Hamas terrorists appeared on social media video screaming "Allahu Akbar" as they attacked. This will remind us of the words and the meaning of the Hamas Covenant:
Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it"
By nightfall in Israel on October 8, reporting indicated that over 700 Israelis had been killed and over 2,000 injured in the Hamas attack that targeted at least 22 Israeli communities located near Gaza. Americans and nationals of many other countries are also among those killed.
The terrorists cut through the Israeli security fence, attempted an amphibious naval landing at Zikim, and in addition to thousands of rockets, also launched dozens of small makeshift drone-type vehicles. An unknown number of Israelis, both civilian and military, have been kidnapped by Hamas and taken back across the Gaza border, where they are being held as human shields in tunnels underneath the Gaza Strip.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared a state of war, called a Cabinet meeting, and invited Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid and National Unity party leader Benny Gantz to enter into an emergency government with him. Gantz reportedly is considering accepting Netanyahu's invitation for the duration of the war and Lapid issued a statement that he is willing to join.
Netanyahu ordered an extensive mobilization of military reserves, moved 31 IDF brigades into the Gaza border area, as the Israeli Air Force (IAF) launches heavy air strikes against terrorist targets in Gaza. He also warned Gaza civilians to "get out now" because the IDF shortly would be operating throughout Gaza.
At the time of this writing, neither Hezbollah nor Hamas-affiliated terrorists in Judea or Samaria had joined in Hamas' attacks against Israel. According to reporting from The Jerusalem Post, "IDF Chief Spokesman Brig. Gen. Daniel Hagari said that Israel had delivered clear and threatening messages" to Hezbollah, warning it of consequences should it decide to "enter the fray."
Former President Donald Trump issued a statement on October 7, blaming the Biden administration for undermining efforts at Middle East peace brokered by his administration. He also condemned Biden for allowing millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars to flow to the Islamic Republic of Iran, whose Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) The Wall Street Journal now reports helped Hamas plan and execute the attacks.
The most recent windfall to the Iranian regime came with the Biden administration waiving sanctions to release Iranian funds previously held in South Korea and Iraq for purchase of Iranian energy supplies. Some part of that total $16 billion, although earmarked for "humanitarian" purposes, undoubtedly will find its way to Tehran's Islamic terror proxies that ring Israel.
With Iranian help, Hamas' attacks were planned out well in advance of this date, which marks the 50th anniversary of the October 1973 Yom Kippur War, that also began with a surprise attack.
President Joe Biden also issued a formal statement of support for Israel during a Saturday phone call to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and pledged "all means of appropriate support" to help Israel defend itself. By Sunday 8 October 2023, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin announced that, in a show of support, naval forces led by the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group had been ordered to the Eastern Mediterranean, close to Israel.
This war, like the 1973 Yom Kippur War, will claim many more lives and injuries before Israel regains the initiative and clears its land of terrorist invasion. At this point, however, it must be asked what role the recently revealed massive Iranian information operation may have played in the surprise nature of these attacks today.
As we now are learning, the Iranian government infiltrated the Biden administration, specifically the U.S. Departments of Defense and State, with a network of officials embedded inside our national security agencies.
At least some of those officials reportedly were recruited to supporting and spreading Iranian propaganda messaging by Robert Malley, the former U.S. Iran Envoy. Malley was suspended from his post earlier this year, allegedly for "mishandling classified information."
While we still do not know exactly what those allegations mean, a treasure trove of emails somehow "purloined" from inside the Iranian Foreign Ministry describes the establishment in 2014 of a propaganda unit called the "Iran Experts Initiative IEI.)"
The IEI, which apparently operated for some nine years unknown to U.S. intelligence, recruited from Iranian diaspora communities in both the U.S. and Europe. The mission of those recruited officials was to sway U.S. government policy in favor of Iranian regime objectives.
Blinding the USG to Iranian plans and operations also seems to have succeeded in a major way.