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Israeli military chief says Israel faces a 'multi-front war'

Netanyahu vows that Israel will eliminate Hamas’ remaining forces in Rafah

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi speaks with troops in the Binyamin region of Judea and Samaria, March 15, 2024 (Photo: IDF)

The Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Herzi Halevi said on Friday that the nation of Israel is currently facing a “multi-front” war, with both external and internal enemies.

“We are in a multi-front war, Lebanon, Syria, Judea and Samaria [West Bank], and Gaza, and more distant things,” Halevi said.

The head of the Israeli army further warned of a heightened risk of terrorism and violence during the current Muslim month of Ramadan.

“We are more alert this month. Really, be very vigilant, very careful, with very good security,” he warned. “Everyone, every soldier… has responsibility for all the arenas, because every incident that happens in one of the arenas really affects and can cause [developments] in other areas, as well.”

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi speaks with troops in the Binyamin region of Judea and Samaria, March 15, 2024 (Photo: IDF)

In December, Israel’s Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant made the same assessment: “We are in a multi-arena war, we are under attack from seven different fronts - Gaza, Lebanon, Syria, Judea and Samaria, Iraq, Yemen and Iran. We have already responded and acted in six of them.”

The common denominator of Israel's enemies is the Iranian regime, currently waging its war against the Jewish state through its terrorist proxies Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza, Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen and pro-Tehran militias in Syria and Iraq.

The Israeli military recently announced it had eliminated about 250 Hamas terrorists in Gaza, as the IDF continues fighting against the remaining Hamas operatives in the strategically important city of Khan Younis. Overall, Israel says it has eliminated around 14,000 Hamas terrorists since Oct. 7.

Eighteen of Hamas’ total 24 battalions in Gaza have been eliminated or neutralized, according to the IDF. Four of the remaining six Hamas battalions are currently concentrated in the southernmost Gazan city Rafah, close to the Egyptian border.

Much of the international community opposes an Israeli military operation in Rafah due to the presence of over one million Gazan civilians in the area. However, Israel has signaled that it will find a solution to bring the Gazan civilians out of the combat zone, ahead of the fighting.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly vowed that Israel will eliminate Hamas’ remaining terror forces. On Friday, he announced that his government had approved a military operation against Hamas in Rafah.

“As Prime Minister of Israel, I reject this pressure…We will enter Rafah. We will complete the elimination of Hamas’ battalions. We will restore security and we will bring total victory for the people of Israel and the State of Israel,” Netanyahu vowed.

While the Gaza Strip remains the epicenter of the war against the terrorist organization Hamas, the jihadist organization has tried to open new fronts against Israel through incitement in Arab areas in the biblical heartland of the country. Hamas operatives based in southern Lebanon have also fired rockets into northern Israel and there have been attempts to infiltrate the northern Israeli border.

In addition, there is the looming threat of potential full-scale war with the Iranian regime’s most powerful terrorist proxy - the Lebanese Shiite terrorist organization Hezbollah - which has been attacking northern Israel since the Hamas Oct. 7 invasion and massacre of over 1,200 Israelis.

Founded in the 1980s, and backed by significant Iranian military and financial assistance, Hezbollah has emerged as perhaps the world’s most powerful non-state actor.

Hezbollah’s military capabilities are more extensive than many regular militaries, with an arsenal of more than 150,000 rockets that are allegedly capable of reaching any point inside Israel.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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