A new video that circulated Tuesday night shows Hamas militants emerging from a tunnel in Israeli territory and creeping up to an Israeli outpost, where they open fire on the soldiers within. The attack took place near the Nahal Oz kibbutz, southeast of central Gaza City, on the Israeli side of the border.
In the video, the militants attempt to capture an Israeli soldier, who can be heard calling out as the attackers grapple with him. Gunshots ring out and the voice then goes silent. The footage, in which the attack has been edited to a three-minute length, shows the militants fleeing the scene, heading back down into the tunnel, and finally cuts to masked men brandishing assault rifles with Hebrew text and Israeli markings.
The Jewish Daily reports that five soldiers were killed in the assault, bringing the total number of Israeli soldiers killed in the conflict to 53 at that time. The military tower attacked in the video is located here on Google Maps, but largely obscured. A linked Panoramio photo shows the tower in much sharper relief and matches the one in the video exactly. A piece from the Israeli news outlet Mako cites a military source, saying the video has been edited, but “is reliable.”
The Israeli Defense Forces commented on the attack, saying it was part of a larger underground assault by Hamas militants on the Nahal Oz community. In the graphic below, the Nahal Oz tunnel is shown as one of the shorter routes among a network of tunnels in the region. Destruction of the network of tunnels reaching from Gaza into Israel has been touted as one of the main reasons for the severity of the assault on Gaza in recent weeks.
At the time of posting, Gaza was reeling from an attack on a market in the Shuja’iya region, where people had gathered to shop amid what was understood to be a four-hour cease-fire. Reports say 17 were killed, with more than 200 injured in the strike.