Welcome to The Times of Israel’s Daily Briefing, your 20-minute audio update on what’s happening in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world.
Today is day 66 of the war with Hamas. Arab affairs reporter Gianluca Pacchiani and environment reporter Sue Surkes join host Amanda Borschel-Dan on today’s episode.
In the Gaza Strip, as casualties mount, we are hearing reports that Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar has lost at least some Gazans’ support. According to testimony from former Hamas communications minister Yousef al-Mansi, “people in the Gaza Strip say that Sinwar and his group destroyed us. We must get rid of them.” Pacchiani begins by telling us who Sinwar is and how he came to power and goes on to discuss whether Gazans support him today.
Syrian-born journalist Manar al-Sharif is one of a handful of people persecuted by Hamas who managed to leave Gaza. She spoke with Pacchiani, and her experiences help explain why there hasn’t been any large-scale uprising against the terrorist organization.
The small Jewish community in Cairo has decided not to hold celebrations of the Hanukkah festival in a city synagogue amid the ongoing war in Gaza. Pacchiani explains why.
Last week, environmental experts called on the defense establishment to carefully weigh the long-term environmental implications of reported plans to flood the immense network of tunnels in the Gaza Strip with seawater to flush the terrorists out. We also hear about other impacts on the environment, as well as hopes that the rebuilding of the Gaza envelope settlements will include green thinking.
We end with an extraordinary tale of bravery: Oz Davidian rescued some 120 young people trying to escape the Supernova rave on October 7, as Hamas terrorists sprayed them with bullets, making 20 trips throughout the day.
For the latest updates, please look at The Times of Israel’s ongoing live blog.