Israel Takes Gaza-Egypt Border, Destroys Tunnels in Rafah

Philadephi Corridor (IDF)

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) secured control of the entire length of the Gaza-Egypt border on Wednesday, known as the Philadelphi Corridor, and discovered some 20 tunnels nearby, as it continued military operations in Rafah.

The IDF also discovered a massive, 1.5-kilometer tunnel complex filled with weapons and other facilities for housing Hamas military operations.

IDF Spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari told reporters (translation via IDF):

Our troops have located dozens of launchers along the corridor, loaded and ready to fire rockets, and launch pits from which Hamas fired rockets and mortars into Israeli territory. Hamas exploited the Philadelphi Corridor, using it to build this infrastructure just dozens of meters from the border with Egypt so that we would not strike them. This infrastructure was located between 10 and 40 meters from the border, specifically so that Israel would not strike near the fence with Egypt. I remind you that in recent weeks, Hamas has fired about seventy rockets and mortars from the Rafah area.

‏So far, our troops have located about 20 tunnels in the Philadelphi Corridor area. We are investigating these tunnels and neutralizing them. In parallel, the troops continue to conduct operations. These operations are carried out based on intelligence information regarding specific locations in the area.

‏ In recent weeks, our troops uncovered an extensive underground terrorist infrastructure in eastern Rafah, which was 1.5 kilometers long. The entrance shaft to the infrastructure was located about 100 meters from the Rafah crossing. The route branched into several sub-routes and was used by Hamas terrorists for movement, transferring weapons and initiating terrorist attacks. Inside the route, we found large quantities of weapons, including anti-tank missiles, AK-47s, explosives and grenades. The 401st Brigade Combat Team operated in the route and destroyed it.

The IDF is operating in Rafah against the last remaining Hamas battalions. It attacked in the city despite warnings from the Biden administration, which shifted to claiming that Israel was not, in fact, conducting a “major” operation.

On Wednesday, White House national security spokesman John Kirby said that Israeli control of the Philadelphi Corridor was consistent with the more limited military operation in Rafah that the U.S. was willing to tolerate.

Control of the Phiadelphi Corridor will enable Israel to block smuggling routes that Hamas has used to bring weapons into the Gaza Strip — and which its leaders could otherwise use as a means of escape, perhaps with Israeli hostages.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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