How They Did It—Inside the Israelis' Daring Raid to Rescue Hamas Hostages

AP Photo/Ohad Zwigenberg

As we reported, Israel Defense Forces (IDF), along with Israel's intelligence agency ISA, ran a dramatic rescue operation Saturday deep in Gaza to rescue four Israeli hostages held by the terrorist Hamas organization.



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The IDF is now releasing new details about the daring operation, calling it a "high-risk, complex mission" that was "surgical" in its precision. They had planned for weeks:

The mission was planned for weeks using "precise intelligence" and took place at around 11 a.m. local time in the heart of Nuseirat in central Gaza, according to Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari of the IDF.

Officers of the National Police special anti-terror unit of Yamam along with Shin Bet agents simultaneously raided two Hamas buildings to pluck the three male hostages and one female hostage to safety. The soldiers had been undergoing intense training for weeks in preparation for the rescue mission, Hagari said.

Sadly, Chief Inspector Arnon Zmora, 36, an officer in the special anti-terror unit of Yamam, was injured during crossfire with Hamas guards and later died, leaving behind a wife and two children.


Our hearts simultaneously hold the greatest joy and deepest pain.  

Reaction to what should be by all rights considered a massive victory for Israel and for humanity was muted among the pro-Hamas crowd, and even the Biden administration seemed less than thrilled by the rescue:


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But how did they do it?

The plan was thought out in great detail, and the IDF built models of the buildings to help prepare for the assault. 

Hagari said Hamas has been holding hostages inside civilian buildings, and Israeli intelligence was able to pinpoint two of these buildings in Nuseirat where families were staying with armed guards inside.

The buildings were about 650 feet apart, and Israeli forces decided to move on both buildings at the same time because they feared Hamas might kill hostages in one of the buildings if they saw the other coming under attack.

"This is a huge risk because they might have thought that we were preparing for another raid," Hagari said. "You have to understand that they're moving the hostages from flat to flat."

Once the hostages were safely recovered, they were taken to safety via helicopter. 


"This is a surgical operation, like a brain operation; it has to be so accurate,” Hagari said. “Imagine that on a civilian street with a lot of people around with trucks and cars.” He added that there were civilian casualties, but that’s because Hamas uses citizens as human shields and even makes them fire upon the Israelis. It should also be noted that none of this would have gone down if Hamas had simply released the hostages—or never taken them in the first place. 

These are the people that thousands if not millions of demonstrators are supporting with their endless violent protests.

But for now, let's just celebrate the success of this amazing mission and hope that more hostages will taste freedom again in the future.


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