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Oct 7 failures

Report: IDF intel knew of Hamas plans to kidnap around 250 hostages before Oct 7

Intel document shows detailed preparations for Hamas invasion

Palestinians near the border fence with Israel from Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, Oct. 7, 2023 (Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90).

The IDF’s intelligence units, including the Signal Intelligence (SIGINT) Unit 8200, knew about detailed Hamas plans for an invasion similar to the one that took place on Oct. 7, and even estimated the terrorists planned to kidnap 200-250 hostages, Israel's KAN News reported on Monday.

A document compiled in the IDF’s Gaza Division and circulated by 8200 less than three weeks before the Oct. 7 Hamas invasion and massacre was known to senior officials in the division and top intelligence officials, a security source told KAN.

The file contained detailed accounts of the preparations the elite Nukhba unit terrorists carried out, including drills to capture IDF posts and civilian towns, kidnap soldiers and civilians, and even instructions on when hostages could be executed, and how to hold and secure hostages in the Gaza Strip.

The terrorists reportedly practiced taking control of mock-up IDF posts and were trained on how to breach fences and coordinate up to four battalions fighting simultaneously.

In recent months, reports in Israeli media outlets revealed that many IDF soldiers warned about these drills, some of which were carried out near the border under the eye of the army’s security cameras along the border fence.

Hamas terrorists meticulously prepared which parts of the IDF bases would be taken over, indicating the headquarters, control rooms, communication centers, synagogues, and soldiers’ quarters, among others, according to the report.

The Nukhba terrorists were ordered to inspect every place they conquered and to not leave documents behind. According to the plans, such a raid would lead to 200 to 250 hostages being taken, including women and children.

During the eventual invasion and massacre, Hamas terrorists kidnapped 251 Israelis and killed about 1,200.

In addition, Hamas leaders allegedly issued detailed orders to search the hostages for phones and take them away, and not provide information about the condition of the hostages to their families if they called.

According to the report, despite the detailed forewarning, the most extreme scenario the Gaza Division prepared for was a simultaneous infiltration of up to several dozen terrorists in three locations along the border fence.

The security system, instead, put its trust in the recently created high-tech fence that includes sensors, watchtowers and cameras, machine guns, and an underground bulwark.

The IDF today estimates that up to 3,000 terrorists overran the border on Oct. 7, breaching the fence in dozens of places with trucks and explosives, blinding the cameras with snipers and drones, and on several occasions, flying over it with kites.

“I feel like crying, yelling and swearing,” one of the soldiers who compiled the report wrote after Oct. 7, according to KAN.

In response to KAN's new report, the IDF did not acknowledge the document but said it was investigating the failures leading up to the massacre and would present them “transparently to the public.”

An investigation team of the IDF’s General Staff is expected to present its preliminary findings regarding the IDF’s failures in about two weeks.

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

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