The Times of Israel liveblogged Monday’s events as they happened.

US second gentleman to hold roundtable with Jewish leaders in UK on combating antisemitism

Illustrative: US Vice President Kamala Harris, left and her husband, Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, attend Israel's Independence Day Reception, hosted by the Embassy of Israel to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel, at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC, June 6, 2023. (Saul Loeb/AFP)
Illustrative: US Vice President Kamala Harris, left and her husband, Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, attend Israel's Independence Day Reception, hosted by the Embassy of Israel to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel, at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC, June 6, 2023. (Saul Loeb/AFP)

US Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff will be traveling to London with Vice President Kamala Harris, the White House announces.

During his trip, Emhoff “will hold a [Wednesday] roundtable with Jewish community leaders to discuss combating antisemitism and countering hate,” the White House says.

On Thursday, Emhoff will meet with the Chelsea FC Foundation leadership to discuss their “Say No To Hate” campaign and participate in an event with students focused on countering racism,” the White House adds.

IDF says it shot and killed suspect who infiltrated Israel from Gaza

The IDF says its forces spotted a suspect who had crossed into Israel from Gaza who had made it to Re’im Junction less than three miles from the border.

It operated according to open-fire procedures before shooting and killing the suspect, the army says.

US confirms that it pressured Israel to restore Gaza comms and that J’lem complied

IDF flares light up the night sky in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/ Abed Khaled)
IDF flares light up the night sky in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/ Abed Khaled)

US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller confirms reports that the Biden administration had pressured Israel to restore communications in Gaza after they were shut off on Friday night as the IDF launched the first stage of its ground incursion.

“We made clear to the Government of Israel over the weekend that communications networks needed to be restored, and we are pleased that they took steps to do that,” Miller says.

“Maintaining these channels is not just about connectivity. It is about ensuring that vital information flows, humanitarian coordination continues, and families can stay in touch,” he adds.

Erdan tells Security Council he’ll don yellow Star of David until countries condemn Hamas

Israeli delegates wear yellow Stars of David as Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan addresses the Security Council on October 30, 2023. (Screen capture/UN TV)
Israeli delegates wear yellow Stars of David as Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan addresses the Security Council on October 30, 2023. (Screen capture/UN TV)

Addressing the UN Security Council meeting on the Israel-Hamas war, Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan likens the current moment to the Holocaust.

“Some of you have learned nothing in the past 80 years. Some of you have forgotten why this body was established,” he says.

“So, I will remind you. From this day on, each time you look at me, you will remember what staying silent in the face of evil means.”

“Just like my grandparents and the grandparents of millions of Jews, from now on, my team and I will wear Yellow stars. We will wear this star until you wake up and condemn the atrocities of Hamas.”

Jake Sullivan meets Saudi defense minister, discusses de-escalation, Gaza aid

Saudi Arabia's Deputy Defense Minister Khalid bin Salman (L) and US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan meet at the White House on May 18, 2022. (Khalid bin Salman/Twitter)
Saudi Arabia's Deputy Defense Minister Khalid bin Salman (L) and US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan meet at the White House on May 18, 2022. (Khalid bin Salman/Twitter)

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan meets with Saudi Arabia’s Defense Minister Prince Khalid bin Salman.

The White House readout largely consists of positions already stated by the Biden administration. The two leaders discuss efforts to boost defense cooperation between the US and Saudi Arabia.

Sullivan stresses US President Joe Biden’s “commitment to support the defense of US partners against threats from state and non-state actors, including those backed by Iran,” the White House says.

Sullivan and Prince Khalid discuss the Israel-Hamas war, including the need to boost humanitarian aid into Gaza, the White House adds.

They also stress the importance of using de-escalation efforts as a springboard for rejuvenating the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians, “building on the work that was already underway between Saudi Arabia and the United States over recent months,” the White House says, in a nod to the normalization talks that have been on the back-burner since October 7.

Sullivan and Prince Khalid “affirmed the importance of deterring any state or non-state actor from seeking to expand the conflict,” according to the US readout, which says that the US officials “welcomed the significant de-escalation of the Yemen conflict over the past year and a half, and endorsed Saudi-led efforts to bring the war to a close altogether.”

In his own tweet on the meeting, Prince Khaled says the two discussed the Saudi-US partnership.

“I stressed the need for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, protection of civilians, allowing humanitarian aid, and resuming the peace process. We also discussed the Kingdom’s efforts in Yemen to end the crisis and achieve peace,” he adds.

PM says all aid to Gaza is checked by Israeli security officials, helps war aims

Palestinians collect boxes and and bags from a UN-run aid supply center, distributing food to local Palestinians and people displaced in Gaza, in Deir al-Balah on October 28, 2023. (MOHAMMED ABED / AFP)
Palestinians collect boxes and and bags from a UN-run aid supply center, distributing food to local Palestinians and people displaced in Gaza, in Deir al-Balah on October 28, 2023. (MOHAMMED ABED / AFP)

The Prime Minister’s Office issues a statement reiterating that any humanitarian aid allowed into Gaza will help its military efforts and is being checked before entry.

“The humanitarian aid allows Israel an important area of activity to reach its war aims,” the PMO says, noting that the aid in question is not coming from Israel, but from international sources, entering via Egypt. Israeli officials have said that enhancing the amount of aid in the southern Gaza Strip will further convince civilians to move out of the north.

The PMO says that the aid is food and medicine that is physically checked by Israeli security sources before it enters.

“All of the deliveries are designated for the civilian population — if it comes to light that they are being taken by Hamas, they will stop,” the statement adds.

Earlier, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby says the US is working toward a plan to greatly increase the amount of aid entering Gaza.

“This first phase that we talked to the Israelis about is trying to get it up to about 100 [truckloads] a day,” Kirby said earlier today, adding that around 45 had got through yesterday. “We’re confident that we can get there in coming days.”

Top Biden officials meet with Jewish communal leaders to discuss antisemitism

US President Joe Biden listens as Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff speaks during a roundtable with Jewish community leaders in the Indian Treaty Room on the White House complex in Washington, Oct. 11, 2023. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
US President Joe Biden listens as Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff speaks during a roundtable with Jewish community leaders in the Indian Treaty Room on the White House complex in Washington, Oct. 11, 2023. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

US Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, and antisemitism envoy Deborah Lipstadt have just wrapped up a meeting with executives of major American Jewish community organizations about the Biden administration’s efforts to combat the uptick in antisemitism on college campuses.

The top Biden officials “heard from Jewish leaders about the extremely disturbing pattern of antisemitic threats of violence in schools and college campuses” since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war, the White House says.

Emhoff and Cardona “unequivocally denounced antisemitism and all other forms of hate. They also reaffirmed the administration’s support for Israel and the right for Israel to defend itself against terrorism,” the US readout adds.

Earlier today, the White House announced a series of actions it is taking to combat the “alarming” rise in reported antisemitic incidents on college campuses.

“The administration will continue to engage with leading organizations and students to hear from them directly and take additional actions to counter antisemitism and hate,” the White House says.

UN envoy on Syria warns of ‘wider escalation’ of Israel-Hamas war

Illustrative: Footage purported to show a strike on the Aleppo airport in Syria, October 14, 2023. (Screenshot: X; used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)
Illustrative: Footage purported to show a strike on the Aleppo airport in Syria, October 14, 2023. (Screenshot: X; used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)

The Israel-Hamas conflict has spilled into Syria, which is now “at its most dangerous situation for a long time,” fueled by growing instability and violence and a lack of progress toward a political solution for its 12-year conflict, the UN special envoy for the country says.

Geir Pedersen tells the UN Security Council that he is “sounding an alarm” that the Syrian people now face “a terrifying prospect of a potential wider escalation.” He points to airstrikes attributed to Israel hitting Aleppo and Damascus airports several times and US retaliation against what it says are multiple attacks on its forces by groups the US “claims are backed by Iran, including on Syrian territory.”

US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield accuses “terrorist groups,” some backed by Syria and Iran, of threatening to expand the Gaza conflict “by using Syrian territory to plot and launch attacks against Israel.”

“We call on the regime to curb the activities of Iran-backed militias in Syria, stop the flow of foreign arms and fighters through its territory, and cease escalatory actions in the Golan Heights,” she says, warning that the United States will continue to respond to attacks on US personnel and facilities in Syria “or against US interests.”

White House says ceasefire in Gaza is not ‘the right answer right now’

IDF flares light up the night sky in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/ Abed Khaled)
IDF flares light up the night sky in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/ Abed Khaled)

The United States does not support current calls for a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas conflict, the White House says, adding that “pauses” to get aid into Gaza should be considered instead.

“We do not believe that a ceasefire is the right answer right now,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby says. “We do not support a ceasefire at this time.”

Kirby also says the US is “confident” of increasing the number of aid trucks getting into Gaza through the Rafah crossing with Egypt to around 100 a day.

“This first phase that we talked to the Israelis about is trying to get it up to about 100 a day,” Kirby says, adding that around 45 had got through yesterday. “We’re confident that we can get there in coming days.”

Director of Turkish Palestinian hospital says airstrike destroyed 2 rooms in building

Fire and smoke rise following Israeli airstrikes in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/Abed Khaled)
Fire and smoke rise following Israeli airstrikes in northern Gaza Strip, October 30, 2023. (AP Photo/Abed Khaled)

Dr. Sobhi Skeik, director of the Turkish Palestinian Hospital that is situated just south of Gaza City, says his hospital was damaged by an Israeli strike earlier this evening.

The blast partially destroyed two rooms on the third floor of the small hospital, damaging the building’s oxygen system and water supply, he claims.

“Just out of luck no one was in the rooms at the time,” Skiek says, saying that there was no evacuation order from the Israeli army before the strike.

Over the past few days, Skeik says dozens of missile strikes have hit the area surrounding the hospital, which specializes in cancer treatment. He says the hospital is currently housing 100 to 150 patients, 200 staff members, and 100 displaced people.

White House says antisemitic airport riot in Russia was reminiscent of ‘pogroms’

Rioters at the airport in Makhachkala, Dagestan, October 30, 2023, shout antisemitic slogans as they protest the arrival of an airliner coming from Tel Aviv. (AP)
Rioters at the airport in Makhachkala, Dagestan, October 30, 2023, shout antisemitic slogans as they protest the arrival of an airliner coming from Tel Aviv. (AP)

The White House says that an airport riot against Israeli and Jewish passengers in Russia’s Muslim-majority Dagestan was reminiscent of “pogroms” from previous periods in history.

“Some people will compare it to the pogroms of the late 19th and early 20th century and I think that’s probably an apt description,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby tells a briefing.

He also rejects as “classic Russian rhetoric” allegations by President Vladimir Putin that Ukraine and the West instigated the riot, adding: “The West had nothing to do with this. This is just hate, bigotry and intimidation, pure and simple.”

Rockets land in Sderot, shrapnel hits sites in Rishon Lezion; no injuries

Damage caused by a rocket impact in Sderot, October 30, 2023. (Sderot Municipality)
Damage caused by a rocket impact in Sderot, October 30, 2023. (Sderot Municipality)

Two rockets land in the mostly empty Sderot and shrapnel lands at a few sites in Rishon Lezion following a barrage of rockets from Gaza.

Damage was caused in Sderot, though no injuries are reported.

Nobody is said to be wounded in Rishon Lezion, and it is not immediately clear if there was any damage.

UK’s Sunak fires aide who called for Israel-Hamas ceasefire

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) meets British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in Jerusalem, October 19, 2023. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) meets British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in Jerusalem, October 19, 2023. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak fires a government aide who had called for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

Tory MP Paul Bristow, who served as Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan’s parliamentary private secretary, was ousted from that role following a letter he sent to Sunak last week accusing Israel of carrying out “collective punishment” on the people of Gaza.

“Paul Bristow has been asked to leave his post in government following comments that were not consistent with the principles of collective responsibility,” a Downing Street spokesperson says.

State Department says US to halt charter flights for Americans leaving Israel

Passengers look at a departure board at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, as flights are canceled and delayed because of a massive surprise attack by Hamas, on October 7, 2023. (Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP)
Passengers look at a departure board at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, as flights are canceled and delayed because of a massive surprise attack by Hamas, on October 7, 2023. (Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP)

US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller says Washington will cease operating charter flights for civilians looking to flee Israel during the war due to a lack of demand.

“We have consistently seen the demand for our charter flights go down to where we’ve had a lot of flights going out with 50% capability,” Miller says. “I think that the number of seats that we have offered, we’ve had something like 25% of them actually be filled.”

IDF spokesman says rescued IDF soldier provided helpful info about captivity

Israelis celebrate the rescue of IDF soldier Pvt. Ori Megidish from Hamas captivity, outside her home in Kiryat Gat, October 30, 2023. (Liron Moldovan/Flash90)
Israelis celebrate the rescue of IDF soldier Pvt. Ori Megidish from Hamas captivity, outside her home in Kiryat Gat, October 30, 2023. (Liron Moldovan/Flash90)

IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari says the military will continue its efforts to release the 238 hostages held by Hamas and other terror groups in the Gaza Strip, after forces rescued Pvt. Ori Megidish in an overnight operation.

“I would like to convey a message to the hostages and their families, we — the IDF and Shin Bet — are all obligated, we have a moral obligation to return all the hostages home,” he says.

He says that after being rescued, Megidish met with IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi and Shin Bet head Ronen Bar. He describes it as a “very touching meeting.”

Hagari says Megidish managed to recall everything she saw in the Gaza Strip, which he says may be used in future operations.

On a Hamas propaganda video released earlier today showing three Israeli hostages, Hagari says the terror group is employing “psychological terror” against Israel.

“And precisely because of this, we must show strength and composure. We must not cooperate with the mind games of Hamas, that way we will succeed in defeating it,” he adds.

Air raid sirens sound across cities in central Israel

Air raid sirens sound in several cities across central Israel, including Rishon Lezion, Ramat Gan and Holon, following a barrage of rockets from Gaza.

Pentagon says US sending almost daily weapons shipments to Israel

A plane with armored vehicles for the IDF arrives at Ben Gurion Airport, October 19, 2023. (Defense Ministry)
A plane with armored vehicles for the IDF arrives at Ben Gurion Airport, October 19, 2023. (Defense Ministry)

The Pentagon continues to provide weapons shipments almost on a daily basis to Israel, Pentagon deputy press secretary Sabrina Singh tells reporters.

“We are not putting any limits on how Israel uses weapons,” Singh says. “That is really up to the Israeli Defense Force to use and how they are going to conduct their operations.”

Singh does not answer a question on whether there were concerns inside the Pentagon about the way the weapons were being used, but said that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has regularly emphasized the need for Israel to follow the laws of armed conflict and avoid civilian casualties as much as possible.

PM compares war with Hamas to war against Nazis, cites RAF strike that killed children

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a statement to foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/Screenshot)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a statement to foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/Screenshot)

Asked at his foreign media press conference whether the high death toll in Gaza indicates that Israel is carrying out “collective punishment against the people of Palestine,” Netanyahu says: “Not a single civilian has to die. Hamas has to merely let them go to the safe zone” that Israel has created. “Hamas is preventing them from leaving, keeping them in the areas of conflict.”

He says the question should be directed to Hamas, but repeats that Israel is “going out of our way” to avoid civilian casualties.

“We cannot give immunity to these terrorists… these savages. We have to do everything we can to minimize civilian casualties. But we cannot give up the fight… This is a battle of civilization against barbarians,” he says.

He describes a Royal Air Force bombing of a Gestapo headquarters in Copenhagen in 1944. “The British pilots missed” and hit a children’s hospital nearby, with the deaths, he says, of 84 children. (In fact, the errant strike, in 1945, hit a school.)

“That is not a war crime. That is not something you blamed Britain for doing. That was a legitimate act of war with tragic consequences that accompany such legitimate actions,” he says.

“And you didn’t tell the Allies, don’t stamp out Nazism because of such tragic consequences… They knew that the future of our civilization was at stake. Well, I’m telling you right now that the future of our civilization is at stake. We have to win this war. We’ll do it by minimizing civilian casualties. And may we succeed.”

Biden sends Treasury official to Saudi Arabia, Qatar to discuss Gaza aid, counterterrorism

The Biden administration dispatched senior Treasury Department official Brian Nelson to Saudi Arabia and Qatar to collaborate with regional counterparts on counterterrorist financing, regional stability, and the facilitation of legitimate humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza, the Treasury Department says.

In Riyadh, Nelson co-chaired a meeting of the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center.

In Doha, Nelson met with Qatar Central Bank governor Bandar al Thani, Attorney General Issa bin Saad al Nuaimi and leaders of the National Counterterrorism Committee.

“Nelson pledged to continue close coordination with partners in the region as Treasury works to disrupt the flow of funds to Hamas, Hezbollah, and other Iran-backed malign groups,” the US readout says.

Putin blames Ukraine for anti-Israel riot, but says Russian law enforcement must be ‘firm’

This photograph distributed by Russian state-owned agency Sputnik shows Russia's President Vladimir Putin chairing a Security Council meeting via a video link in Moscow on October 20, 2023. (Gavriil GRIGOROV / POOL / AFP)
This photograph distributed by Russian state-owned agency Sputnik shows Russia's President Vladimir Putin chairing a Security Council meeting via a video link in Moscow on October 20, 2023. (Gavriil GRIGOROV / POOL / AFP)

Russian President Vladimir Putin accuses Ukraine and “Western special services” of instigating the anti-Israel riot at Dagestan’s Makhachkala airport last night, but calls on Russian security services to maintain order.

“The events in Makhachkala last night were instigated also through social networks, not least from Ukraine, by the hands of agents of Western special services,” Putin says in televised comments.

The Russian president calls on Russian law enforcement to take “firm” actions following the antisemitic mob attack.

“I want to draw the attention of heads of all regions, heads of law enforcement agencies and special services to the need for firm, timely and clear actions to protect Russia’s constitutional order, the rights and freedoms of our citizens, inter-ethnic and inter-religious harmony,” Putin says.

After Dagestan mob attack, Israel raises alert level for North Caucuses region

A pro-Palestinian mob storms an airport terminal in Dagestan, Russia, as they look for passengers from a flight arriving from Israel, October 29, 2023. (Screenshot)
A pro-Palestinian mob storms an airport terminal in Dagestan, Russia, as they look for passengers from a flight arriving from Israel, October 29, 2023. (Screenshot)

Israel has raised its alert for the North Caucuses region of Russia to 4, its highest level, and urges citizens to leave, following an antisemitic mob attack yesterday at an airport in Dagestan.

A joint statement from the National Security Council and the Foreign Ministry says that, due to concerns over the incident yesterday and worries about repeat events, Israeli citizens should avoid those areas, and those already there should leave.

PM dismisses idea of quitting, says ‘the only thing I intend to have resign is Hamas’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu answers questions from foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/ Screenshot)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu answers questions from foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/ Screenshot)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is asked at his foreign media press conference whether he has considered stepping down in the wake of the October 7 Hamas onslaught. He says he has not.

“It seems that the level of support that you have among the Israeli public has dropped considerably,” a reporter says. “So the question is, how can you continue to lead this country effectively during a very difficult time? And have you at all considered stepping down?”

“The only thing that I intend to have resign is Hamas,” Netanyahu replies. “We are going to resign them to the dustbin of history.

“That’s my goal. That’s my responsibility. That’s what I’m leading the country to do. This is my responsibility now,” he says.

Knesset advances series of war-related legislation

Lawmakers attend a plenum session in the Knesset in Jerusalem, October 16, 2023. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)
Lawmakers attend a plenum session in the Knesset in Jerusalem, October 16, 2023. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)

The Knesset advances a bill to enable the defense minister to declare a foreign individual a terrorist operative, as part of its concentration on war-related legislation.

The bill, which clears its first reading today, is a proposed amendment to Israel’s counterterrorism law. Currently, a foreign individual in Israel can only be recognized as a terror operative if he or she was declared a terror operative by an authorized non-Israeli entity.

In addition, the Knesset advances a bill to streamline data transfer to the National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing, in order to enable swifter designation of terror groups. Currently the NBCTF cannot receive information directly from the Defense Ministry, but must get it indirectly through the police.

A third bill which advances on its first reading would ease inheritance procedures for the beneficiaries of people killed during Hamas’s rampage through southern Israel.

The proposal is a temporary order to be in place for 18 months, from October 7.

Dermer says any swap deal to free hostages would need approval of full government

Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer arrives for the weekly cabinet meeting at Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem on January 29, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/ Flash90)
Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer arrives for the weekly cabinet meeting at Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem on January 29, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/ Flash90)

Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer says that any prisoner swap deal for hostages being held in Gaza would have to be approved by the wider government.

Speaking to a press conference of foreign reporters, Dermer responds to a question about a potential deal similar to that seen in 2011, when IDF soldier Gilad Shalit was swapped for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners after five years in captivity.

“Those decisions are actually not made by the war cabinet. They’d be have to be brought to the security cabinet and then I believe the full government would have to vote on whatever decision is made,” says Dermer.

The minister, considered a close confidant of Netanyahu and an observer on the war cabinet, says that Israel’s focus is on its “military objectives… and one of the goals of the operation is to bring back those hostages.”

Dermer says that “if there’s a potential deal that can be made, that would be brought to the appropriate forum in Israel.”

Father of hostage in Hamas propaganda video says they are ‘relieved to see her alive’

Ramos Aloni, father of captive Daniel Aloni, speaks at a press conference on October 30, 2023. (Screenshot)
Ramos Aloni, father of captive Daniel Aloni, speaks at a press conference on October 30, 2023. (Screenshot)

The father of an Israeli hostage held captive by Hamas in Gaza says her family was happy to see proof of life in a video released earlier today.

“We felt relieved to see that she’s alive and that we’re seeing her, because until today, we didn’t know any details at all,” says Ramos Aloni at a press conference.

Aloni speaks about Daniel Aloni, her sister Sharon, and her 3-year-old twins, 5-year-old granddaughter and son-in-law David, who are all believed to be held hostage in Gaza.

“We’ve been left as a family of four, from a family of 10,” says Aloni.

Aloni demands the Red Cross take initiative and check on all the captives, mentions that his daughter takes medications and needs them on a daily basis.

He also asks Qatar to do whatever it can to bring about the release of all the captives.

“Daniel and Sharon, girls, we see you, we love you, we hear you, we think about you every minute and second, and we’ll bring you home, amen,” says Aloni.

IDF Southern Command chief entered Gaza today for assessment, says military

Head of the IDF Southern Command, Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkelman, speaks to troops near the Gaza border, October 19, 2023. (Israel Defense Forces)
Head of the IDF Southern Command, Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkelman, speaks to troops near the Gaza border, October 19, 2023. (Israel Defense Forces)

The head of the IDF Southern Command, Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkelman, entered the Gaza Strip today with ground forces to carry out an assessment of the situation, the military says.

More troops entered the Gaza Strip today, as the IDF expands its ground operation.

“IDF forces continue the ground operation in order to accomplish the goals of the war,” the IDF says.

Mossad chief visited Qatar over weekend to discuss hostage deal — reports

Mossad director David Barnea speaks at a conference at Reichman University on September 10, 2023. (Avshalom Sassoni/ Flash90)
Mossad director David Barnea speaks at a conference at Reichman University on September 10, 2023. (Avshalom Sassoni/ Flash90)

Mossad chief David Barnea paid a visit to Qatar over the weekend to take part in discussions about the potential for a deal to release hostages in Gaza, according to a number of Hebrew media reports.

The reports, which all cited unnamed Israeli officials — generally indicating a coordinated leak — say that Barnea visited after the IDF began its limited ground operation in Gaza.

Progress was reportedly made during the discussions, but no agreement was reached, the reports claimed.

Air raid sirens sound in Ashkelon

Air raid sirens sound in Ashkelon and other areas near northern Gaza, following a barrage of rockets fired.

IDF says it struck a number of Hezbollah targets in Lebanon

A picture taken near Moshav Kfar Yuval in northern Israel shows Israeli shellings on the Lebanese side of the border, October 30, 2023. (Jalaa MAREY / AFP)
A picture taken near Moshav Kfar Yuval in northern Israel shows Israeli shellings on the Lebanese side of the border, October 30, 2023. (Jalaa MAREY / AFP)

The Israel Defense Forces says it struck a number of Hezbollah positions in southern Lebanon in response to mortar fire and a missile attack on northern Israel today.

The IDF says it hit “military infrastructure” belonging to the terror group, and a number of Hezbollah observation posts.

The military publishes footage showing some of the strikes.

Netanyahu tells foreign press: Calls for a ceasefire are calls for Israel to surrender

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a statement to foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/Screenshot)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a statement to foreign media outlets, October 30, 2023. (GPO/Screenshot)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that calls for a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza are calls for Israel to surrender to Hamas.

“Israel will not agree to a cessation of hostilities after the horrific attacks of October 7,” says Netanyahu in comments in English to the foreign media. “Calls for a ceasefire are a call for Israel to surrender to Hamas, to surrender to terror, to surrender to barbarism. That will not happen. Ladies and gentlemen, the Bible says that there is a time for peace and a time for war. This is a time for war.”

Netanyahu says nobody would have called on the US to agree to a ceasefire following the Pearl Harbor attack during World War II.

“The horrors that Hamas perpetrated on October 7 remind us that we will not realize the promise of a better future unless we, the civilized world, are willing to fight the barbarians. Because the barbarians are ready to fight us… and usher in a world of fear and darkness,” says Netanyahu.

“This is a turning point — for leaders and for nations,” he says. “It is time for all of us to decide if we are willing to fight for a future of hope and promise or surrender to tyranny and terror.”

He says Israel has been at war since October 7. “Israel did not start this war. Israel did not want this war. But Israel will win this war.”

He calls the Hamas onslaught “the worst savagery our people have seen since the Holocaust. Hamas murdered children in front of their parents, murdered parents in front of their children. They burned people alive, they raped women, they beheaded men, they tortured Holocaust survivors, they kidnapped babies.”

He stresses Iran’s role in financing Hamas and the rest of the “axis of evil… an axis of terror” in the Middle East and beyond. “In fighting Hamas and the Iranian axis of terror, Israel is fighting the enemies of civilization itself.”

Victory begins with moral clarity, he says, in comments on the death toll of Palestinians in Gaza.

“It begins with knowing the difference between good and evil, between right and wrong… It means making a moral distinction between the deliberate murder of the innocent and the unintentional casualties that accompany every legitimate war.”

“As long as Hamas’s use of Palestinian human shields results in the international community blaming Israel, Hamas will continue to use [the practice] as a tool of terror,” he warns. “Hamas will continue to use the basements in Gaza’s hospitals as the command posts of its vast terror tunnel network. It will continue to use mosques as fortified military positions and weapon depots. It will continue to steal fuel and humanitarian assistance from UN facilities.”

“While Israel is doing everything to get Palestinian civilians out of harm’s way, Hamas is doing everything to keep Palestinian civilians in harm’s way,” he says.

Turning to the hostages held by Hamas, he urges every civilized nation to stand with Israel in demanding that these hostages are freed immediately and unconditionally.

“Israel will stand against the forces of barbarism until victory. I hope and pray that civilized nations everywhere will back this fight,” he says. “Because Israel’s fight is your fight; because if Hamas and Iran’s axis of evil win, you will be their next target. That’s why Israel’s victory will be your victory.”

Make no mistake, he concludes, “regardless of who stands with Israel, Israel will fight until this battle is won. And Israel will prevail.”

Gallant says rescue of IDF soldier ‘proof of our ability’ to reach hostages in Gaza

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant addresses the Israeli press from Tel Aviv's IDF headquarters, October 26, 2023. (Elad Malka/Defense Ministry)
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant addresses the Israeli press from Tel Aviv's IDF headquarters, October 26, 2023. (Elad Malka/Defense Ministry)

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant says the overnight operation in the Gaza Strip to rescue Pvt. Ori Megidish “is proof” that Israel can rescue the hostages held by Hamas and other terror groups.

“This is further proof of our ability to reach the hostages, the importance of the ground operation, and above all our commitment to each and every one of the hostages,” Gallant says.

He says the ongoing ground operation is “not easy.”

“The enemy is resisting, but the IDF forces operate with precision and determination, with cooperation between ground and air forces, and quality intelligence,” Gallant continues.

“This machine is unstoppable, and I am convinced that they will be able to accomplish their tasks,” he says. “This will not be a short or easy war, but we are determined to win for those who paid with their lives.”

Blinken speaks with Qatari PM about efforts to release Gaza hostages

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) meets with Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani in Lusail on October 13, 2023. (Jacquelyn Martin / POOL / AFP)
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) meets with Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani in Lusail on October 13, 2023. (Jacquelyn Martin / POOL / AFP)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke earlier today with Qatari Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani about the Gaza war, the State Department says.

They discussed the humanitarian situation in Gaza, efforts to release hostages in the enclave, securing safe passage for US citizens and foreign nationals looking to free the Strip and efforts to secure the entry of more humanitarian aid into the territory, the State Department readout says.

Several media reports have indicated that Israel has sent an official to Doha to take part in talks, although Jerusalem has not confirmed that.

Netanyahu says rescue of captive IDF soldier shows ‘commitment’ to returning all hostages

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomes home Pvt. Ori Megidish after she was rescued last night during an IDF ground operation in Gaza.

Netanyahu congratulates the IDF and Shin Bet “for this important and moving achievement, which shows our commitment to bringing all of the hostages home.”

The prime minister calls the Hamas terrorists “monsters,” saying Israel will continue to pursue them.

Further details on rescue of Pvt. Ori Megidish unlikely to be revealed

The Shin Bet security agency and Israel Defense Forces are unlikely to reveal further information on how IDF soldier Pvt. Ori Megidish was rescued from Hamas captivity in the Gaza Strip, to prevent harm to future operations.

Megidish was believed to have been held alone, though other members of her unit were captured by Hamas terrorists on October 7.

The operation was planned several days in advance and it is thought that during the overnight activity, Hamas showed resistance.

However, no members of Israeli security forces were reported hurt.

Gantz says Israel will use ‘every means’ to return hostages from Gaza

Minister Benny Gantz speaks to the media in Tel Aviv on October 26, 2023. (Carrie Keller-Lynn/Times of Israel)
Minister Benny Gantz speaks to the media in Tel Aviv on October 26, 2023. (Carrie Keller-Lynn/Times of Israel)

Minister Benny Gantz says that Israel will continue to work tirelessly to return the hostages being held in Gaza, after an IDF soldier was freed during a military operation last night.

“We will continue to make every effort, by every means, in order to bring home our girls and boys,” Gantz says.

Foreign Minister Eli Cohen congratulates the IDF and Shin Bet for bringing Pvt. Ori Megidish home, adding: “We will continue to act to free all the captives.”

Netanyahu says Israel making ‘systematic progress’ in campaign against Hamas

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and IDF chief Herzi Halevi, October 23, 2023. (Kobi Gideon / GPO)
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and IDF chief Herzi Halevi, October 23, 2023. (Kobi Gideon / GPO)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel is making “systematic progress” in its military campaign against Hamas in Gaza.

At the start of a war cabinet meeting, Netanyahu says the IDF “has expanded its ground entry into the Gaza Strip. It is doing it in measured, very powerful steps, making systematic progress one step at a time.”

IDF names three additional fallen soldiers killed since start of war

Wreaths cover recently dug graves of fallen soldiers in the Mount Herzl Military Cemetery in Jerusalem, October 15, 2023. (Shira Silkoff)
Wreaths cover recently dug graves of fallen soldiers in the Mount Herzl Military Cemetery in Jerusalem, October 15, 2023. (Shira Silkoff)

The Israel Defense Forces names three more soldiers killed during the ongoing war in the Gaza Strip.

They are:

– Lt. Col. Meidan Israel, 35, head of supply in the Southern Command, from Yarhiv. Meidan was killed on October 25.

– Maj. Yair Zloof, 32, commander of the 401st Armored Brigade’s surgical company, from Tel Mond. Zloof was killed on October 10.

– Lt. (res.) Maor Refael Shalom, 47, who served in a non-IDF unit, from Arugot. Shalom was killed on October 7.

The names bring the total number of slain soldiers, officers and reservists — many of whom are local security officers — in the war to 315.

Illinois man pleads not guilty in fatal stabbing of 6-year-old Muslim boy

This undated photo provided on October 16, 2023, by the Chicago chapter of the Council On American Islamic Relations, shows Wadea Al-Fayoume, a 6-year-old Muslim boy alleged killed by his landlord over the 2023 Gaza war. (CAIR-Chicago via AP)
This undated photo provided on October 16, 2023, by the Chicago chapter of the Council On American Islamic Relations, shows Wadea Al-Fayoume, a 6-year-old Muslim boy alleged killed by his landlord over the 2023 Gaza war. (CAIR-Chicago via AP)

A man accused of murder, attempted murder and a hate crime in an attack on a Palestinian-American woman and her young son pleads not guilty following his indictment by an Illinois grand jury.

Joseph Czuba, 71, is charged in the fatal stabbing of six-year-old Wadea Al-Fayoume and the wounding of Hanaan Shahin on Oct. 14. Authorities say the victims were targeted because of their Muslim faith.

Shahin told police that Czuba, her landlord in Plainfield in Will County, was upset over the Israel-Hamas war and attacked them after she had urged him to “pray for peace.”

Czuba appears in court wearing a red jail uniform, socks and slippers. His attorney George Lenard enters the not guilty plea.

Czuba does not speak, looking down at the podium as he stands before the judge in the court in Joliet, Illinois.

IDF says captured soldier rescued from Gaza during overnight operation

IDF soldier Pvt. Ori Megidish (center) with her family after being rescued from Gaza, October 30, 2023. (Shin Bet)
IDF soldier Pvt. Ori Megidish (center) with her family after being rescued from Gaza, October 30, 2023. (Shin Bet)

The Israel Defense Forces and Shin Bet security agency say a soldier captured by the Hamas terror group has been rescued from the Gaza Strip in an overnight operation.

In a joint statement, the IDF and Shin Bet say Pvt. Ori Megidish is in good condition, and has met with her family.

The IDF says Megidish was rescued during a ground operation overnight, but no further details are given.

Megidish was an observation soldier, taken hostage by Hamas when terrorists stormed the Nahal Oz base on October 7.

German chancellor says confirmed death of Shani Louk shows ‘barbarity’ of Hamas

Shani Louk, a German and Israeli citizen who was abducted to Gaza by Hamas terrorists. (Courtesy Shani Louk Instagram)
Shani Louk, a German and Israeli citizen who was abducted to Gaza by Hamas terrorists. (Courtesy Shani Louk Instagram)

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz laments the “terrible” news that Shani Louk has died, after being grabbed by terrorists in the Hamas-led onslaught in southern Israel three weeks ago.

“This shows the full barbarity behind the Hamas attack — who must be held accountable,” Scholz writes on the social media platform X. “This is terror, and Israel has the right to defend itself.”

Kyiv blames Russian security forces for antisemitic mob in Dagestan

A pro-Palestinian mob storms an airport terminal in Dagestan, Russia, as they look for passengers from a flight arriving from Israel, October 29, 2023. (Screenshot)
A pro-Palestinian mob storms an airport terminal in Dagestan, Russia, as they look for passengers from a flight arriving from Israel, October 29, 2023. (Screenshot)

Russian security forces were behind the antisemitic mob in Dagestan, charges Ukraine’s ambassador to Israel, Yevgen Korniychuk.

“They brought the security forces into the airport, but they were sitting aside and smoking cigarettes,” he tells The Times of Israel. “They did nothing.”

Korniychuk says pogroms against Jews were used by tsarist Russia to deflect anger over unemployment and poverty, and Moscow is using a similar tactic today.

“Now they have to explain to those younger people who is the one to be blamed in Russia because the economy is no good and there’s no jobs, especially in those regions in the Northern Caucasus as well as the rest of the republics,” he argues.

Korniychuk also says the riot was a predictable “next step” in the wake of Russia hosting Hamas leaders and failing to fully condemn the Hamas attacks on October 7.

The ambassador says a change in Israel’s stance on the Russia-Ukraine war will be slow but “it will definitely take place because everybody understand who is the enemy and that Russia is basically on the same side with Iran and Hamas in this war.”

Korniychuk rejects Russian allegations that Kyiv was behind the incident in Dagestan’s main airport, saying “What else you can expect from the Russian propaganda?”

He adds that Ukrainian intelligence has been working with Israeli intelligence from “day one,” immediately after the Hamas invasion.

Netanyahu says he has ‘full confidence’ in IDF chief

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a press conference with Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and Cabinet Minister Benny Gantz in the Kirya military base in Tel Aviv, Oct. 28, 2023. (Abir Sultan/Pool Photo via AP)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a press conference with Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and Cabinet Minister Benny Gantz in the Kirya military base in Tel Aviv, Oct. 28, 2023. (Abir Sultan/Pool Photo via AP)

Following backlash and his apology for a tweet blaming security chiefs for Hamas’s October 7 massacre, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he has “full confidence” in the leadership of security officials.

“I have to say that we are giving full confidence in the approach and the leadership of the IDF chief,” he says in public comments at the start of a cabinet meeting.

Netanyahu says that the most important thing “is a union of forces,” pointing to the emergency war government and saying that “the nation is united now in a way that it has never been.”

Air raid sirens sound across parts of central Israel

Air raid sirens are sounding across central Israel including in Lod, Ness Ziona and Rishon Lezion, following a barrage of heavy rockets from Gaza.

IDF says it struck terror cell in south Lebanon that was preparing to launch mortars

A picture taken near Moshav Kfar Yuval in northern Israel shows Israeli shellings on the Lebanese side of the border, October 30, 2023. (Jalaa MAREY / AFP)
A picture taken near Moshav Kfar Yuval in northern Israel shows Israeli shellings on the Lebanese side of the border, October 30, 2023. (Jalaa MAREY / AFP)

The Israel Defense Forces says it has carried out a strike against a terror cell in southern Lebanon preparing to launch mortars at the northern town of Rosh Hanikra.

The military publishes a video showing the strike.

Earlier, two were rockets fired from Lebanon at northern Israel, setting off sirens in the community of Elkosh. According to the IDF, both projectiles landed in open areas, causing no injuries or damage.

Separately, an anti-tank guided missile was fired at an area near the Biranit base on the Lebanon border.

The IDF says no injuries were caused in the attack. It adds that troops are shelling the sources of the rocket and missile fire in southern Lebanon with artillery.

Pentagon says US, coalition forces were attacked 23 times in Iraq, Syria in past 2 weeks

Two US senior defense officials briefing reporters at the Pentagon say that from Oct. 17 to Oct. 30, US and coalition forces have been attacked at least 14 times in Iraq and nine times in Syria by a mix of drones and rockets for a total of 23 attacks.

The officials say many of the drones and rockets were intercepted and failed to reach their targets.

Bases housing US troops in Syria and Iraq have come under rocket and drone attacks over the past weeks as tensions rise in the region over the Israel-Hamas war.

Report: El Al to stop flying over Saudi Arabia, Oman on flights to Asia

El Al airplanes on the tarmac at Israel's Ben Gurion International Airport, October 4, 2022. (Moshe Shai/Flash 90)
El Al airplanes on the tarmac at Israel's Ben Gurion International Airport, October 4, 2022. (Moshe Shai/Flash 90)

According to several Hebrew media reports, El Al has decided to stop flying over Saudi Arabia and Oman on its flights to southeast Asia, significantly lengthening them.

A flight to Bangkok will now take 11.5 hours instead of 8.5 hours — reverting back to the lengthy route it took for years, until earlier this year.

Reports indicate that the decision was made due to security concerns and could be temporary.

White House announces steps to combat ‘alarming’ rise in campus antisemitism

US President Joe Biden listens as Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff speaks during a roundtable with Jewish community leaders in the Indian Treaty Room on the White House complex in Washington, Oct. 11, 2023. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
US President Joe Biden listens as Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff speaks during a roundtable with Jewish community leaders in the Indian Treaty Room on the White House complex in Washington, Oct. 11, 2023. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The White House announces a series of actions it is taking to combat the “alarming” rise in reported antisemitic incidents on American college campuses since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war.

Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, who has been one of the main faces of the administration’s fight against antisemitism, will discuss the matter at a meeting with executives of major American Jewish community organizations later today at the Education Department.

Later this week, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona and White House domestic policy czar Neera Tanden will visit a university campus and hold a roundtable with Jewish students.

The Education Department, which has already conducted site visits in San Francisco, St. Louis, and Maine to address and learn about antisemitism on college campuses, will make visits to schools in New York City and Baltimore later this week, the White House says.

As part of their engagements with local law enforcement regarding antisemitism, the Justice and Homeland Security departments have begun including campus police in those meetings, the White House says.

The Justice Department’s Community Relations Service will continue to provide support on college campuses and remains in dialogue with Jewish, Muslim, Arab, and other impacted communities on college campuses nationwide, according to the White House. The Homeland Security Department has tasked its cybersecurity experts to engage with colleges across the countries regarding campus antisemitism.

The Biden administration has also expedited an initiative launched just over a week before the war instructing federal officials to include antisemitism and other forms of religious bigotry as prohibited under civil rights law, meaning Jewish groups cannot be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.

That initiative was part of a broader, first-of-its-kind presidential strategy to combat antisemitism launched last May. The administration says it has speeded up the process to file complaints and will also offer technical assistance to people on campuses who want to file complaints.

JTA contributed to this report.

Netanyahu slams ‘cruel psychological propaganda’ of Hamas hostage video

The Prime Minister’s Office slams the “cruel psychological propaganda” by Hamas in releasing a video showing three Israeli hostages, and accuses the terror group of war crimes.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he is reaching out in an embrace to the three women: “Our heart is with you and with all the other hostages. We are doing everything we can to bring all the kidnapped and missing home.”

The PMO names them as Rimon Kirsht, Danielle Aloni, and Lena Trupanov.

Their statements in the video, criticizing Netanyahu and calling on him to make an immediate deal, were almost certainly dictated by the terrorist group holding them captive in Gaza.

Lebanon PM says Hezbollah is acting ‘wisely,’ says he is trying to avoid joining war

Lebanon's caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati (L) shakes hands with UNIFIL Maj. Gen. Aroldo Lazaro Saenz, the head of mission at the peacekeeping force's headquarters in the southern Lebanese border town of Naqura, October 24, 2023. (UNIFIL handout/AFP)
Lebanon's caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati (L) shakes hands with UNIFIL Maj. Gen. Aroldo Lazaro Saenz, the head of mission at the peacekeeping force's headquarters in the southern Lebanese border town of Naqura, October 24, 2023. (UNIFIL handout/AFP)

Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister says he is working to ensure his country does not enter the Israel-Hamas war, even as Hezbollah and Israel have been exchanging cross-border fire.

In an interview with AFP, Najib Mikati says he fears an escalation, with the border skirmishes stoking concerns that Lebanon’s powerful Iran-backed Hezbollah movement could open a new front with Israel.

“I am doing my duty to prevent Lebanon from entering the war,” Mikati says. “Lebanon is in the eye of the storm,” he adds.

Mikati, who is on good terms with Hezbollah, says he has no “clear answer” about whether war looms ahead, adding that “it depends on regional developments.”

“For now Hezbollah has managed the situation rationally and wisely, and the rules of the game have remained constrained to certain limits,” Mikati claims. “But at the same time I feel like I cannot reassure Lebanese” because the situation is still developing.

Air raid sirens sounding in Elkosh, near Lebanon border

Incoming rocket sirens are sounding in the northern community of Elkosh, close to the Lebanon border.

The alerts come amid repeated rocket and missile attacks by Hezbollah and allied Palestinian terror factions from southern Lebanon on northern Israel.

Several mortars fired from Lebanon toward Israel; IDF responds with shelling

Illustrative: Flares are fired from northern Israel over the southern Lebanese border village of Aita al-Shaab, on October 28, 2023. (FADEL SENNA / AFP)
Illustrative: Flares are fired from northern Israel over the southern Lebanese border village of Aita al-Shaab, on October 28, 2023. (FADEL SENNA / AFP)

Several mortars were fired from Lebanon at Israeli military posts along the northern border a short while ago, setting off sirens in a number of towns in the Western Galilee.

There are no reports of injuries in the attack.

The Israel Defense Forces says it is responding with artillery shelling against the source of the fire in southern Lebanon.

Labor chief Michaeli says Israel ‘has no leadership,’ Netanyahu ‘must be replaced now’

Labor party leader Merav Michaeli attends a faction meeting at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on June 5, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Labor party leader Merav Michaeli attends a faction meeting at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on June 5, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Labor party leader Merav Michaeli says the government is failing to lead Israel during its toughest moments, and demands that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu be ousted from office immediately.

“Even in our hardest hours, until today, we had leadership,” she says. “The State of Israel is in its hardest moment and the public feels that there is no leadership, there is no management.”

Michaeli charges that “the public sees the prime minister worrying only about himself,” after a incident yesterday in which Netanyahu — or a member of his staff — released a statement apparently foisting responsibility for Israel’s October 7 failure onto the heads of intelligence services.

Netanyahu later deleted the posted statement and issued a rare apology, but has yet to join a string of senior Israeli officials who have accepted blame for Israel’s catastrophic failure to prevent Hamas’s brutal attack.

“In such a state of no confidence, Netanyahu must be replaced now,” she says, “immediately.”

Hamas releases propaganda video showing 3 hostages rebuking Netanyahu

A screenshot from a propaganda video released by Hamas on October 30, 2023, showing three Israeli hostages: Rimon Buchshtab Kirsht (left), Danielle Aloni (center), and Lena Trupanov (right)
A screenshot from a propaganda video released by Hamas on October 30, 2023, showing three Israeli hostages: Rimon Buchshtab Kirsht (left), Danielle Aloni (center), and Lena Trupanov (right)

Hamas releases a propaganda video in which three Israeli women held hostage by the terror group in the Gaza Strip berate Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calling on him to secure their release and accusing him of failing to prevent the terror group’s October 7 onslaught.

The identities of the three women, whose statement was almost certainly dictated by their captors, are not immediately clear.

As the IDF intensifies its operation in the Gaza Strip, Hamas is thought to be employing various psychological manipulations to sow division and weaken Israelis’ resolve, while using the negotiations for the release of the estimated 240 captives it is holding to buy time and resources for its military campaign.

Ra’am leader urges Jewish and Arab Israelis to keep their cool

Ra’am party head Mansour Abbas cautions Israeli citizens to cool internal tensions, amid several isolated incidents of internal cross-community violence and intimidation.

“I turn to Israel’s Arab and Jewish citizens to… adhere to the law and maintain civil order and don’t be provoked by every act of violence,” Abbas says, adding that 20 Arab Israelis were killed by Hamas during the October 7 terror onslaught.

“Be careful before everything that you write on social media… especially those posts that violate the law or raise emotions,” Abbas says, perhaps alluding to the state prosecutor stepping up issuing indictments for incitement.

Rocket alert sounds in western Galilee border towns

Incoming rocket sirens are sounding in Rosh Hanikra in the western Galilee and in other nearby towns, close to the Lebanon border.

The alerts come amid repeated rocket and missile attacks by Hezbollah and allied Palestinian terror factions from southern Lebanon on northern Israel.

The Israel Defense Forces says the cause of the sirens is under investigation.

Lapid says he’ll back moves to free hostages, calls for Hamas leaders to be killed

Opposition Leader Yair Lapid says he told the government that he would support any effort to return hostages from Gaza.

“We will give our full backing to any decision and any step, as well as to any price that will lead to the return of the hostages,” Lapid says at the start of Yesh Atid’s Knesset faction meeting.

“At the same time, we need to take painful steps to make sure they come home,” he adds, saying that the social contract between citizens and the state is “broken” until all the captives — Israeli and non-Israeli — are repatriated.

Lapid also calls on Israel to assassinate Hamas’s top leadership, specifically calling out six of its most senior political and military leaders. He says that Israel must reach them, “whether in Gaza or in other countries.”

Hamas’s top political leadership generally bases itself out of Qatar.

“The State of Israel must not stop and must not let go until we kill six people: Yahya Sinwar, Mohammed Deif, Ismail Haniyeh, Saleh al-Arouri, Khaled Mashaal and Marwan Issa,” Lapid says.

“All six have to die. Until they die, Israel will not avenge the murdered of Be’eri and Sderot, Kfar Aza and Ofakim. Until they die, the Middle East will not understand that we are not messing around.”

Tel Aviv University announces grants for student soldiers

The over 5,000 students from Tel Aviv University who have been called up for reserve IDF duty will receive grants of NIS 1,000 ($250) each within the next few days, the university announces.

“TAU intends, moreover, to provide substantial additional grants, especially for those serving in combat or combat-support units. TAU will also provide additional aid to students in reserve duty or those from the north and south of Israel who are now facing immediate financial problems,” the university says.

The grants are made through the TAU Emergency Fund, which was established shortly after the war began on October 7. The fund is supported by TAU donors, especially the Blavatnik Family Foundation.

The university had previously announced that students staying in student housing who were called for reserve duty would be exempt from rent payments for October and November, and that scholarships would be available to help with rent for those who have not been called up.

Due to the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict and the huge call-up of reserve soldiers, which includes substantial numbers drawn from the staff and students at Israel’s universities, the beginning of the academic year for nearly all institutions of higher education has been delayed until at least December 3.

Hezbollah targets army position in north, drawing IDF shelling in response

The Israel Defense Forces says terror operatives in southern Lebanon opened fire at an army position on the northern border earlier.

The IDF says no soldiers were hurt in the attack.

In response, the IDF says troops shelled the source of the gunfire with artillery, and struck a Hezbollah site.

The military publishes a video showing the strike on “military infrastructure” belonging to the Lebanese terror group.

Russia accuses Ukraine of playing ‘key role’ in anti-Israel airport riot

Russia accuses Ukraine of playing a “key role” in the antisemitic riot at an airport in the Muslim-majority region of Dagestan on Sunday.

“The criminal Kyiv regime played a direct and key role in carrying out the latest destructive act,” Russia’s foreign affairs spokeswoman Maria Zakharova says in a statement.

On Sunday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tied the incident to what he has called “Russian antisemitism and systemic hatred toward other nations.”

Airport riot an attempt to sow Jewish-Muslim ‘discord’ – Russian Christian leader

Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill arrives to attend a meeting of the Russian Defense Ministry Board at the National Defense Control Centre in Moscow, Russia, December 21, 2022. (Sergey Fadeichev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)
Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill arrives to attend a meeting of the Russian Defense Ministry Board at the National Defense Control Centre in Moscow, Russia, December 21, 2022. (Sergey Fadeichev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)

Moscow’s Orthodox spiritual leader, Patriarch Kirill, condemns an anti-Israel riot at an airport in the Muslim-majority region of Dagestan as a bid to “sow discord” between Russia’s Jews and Muslims.

The powerful religious leader speaks a day after a violent mob descended onto Makhachkala airport looking for Jews after a flight from Israel had landed.

There was “no moral justification for those who planned to attack innocent people,” he says of Sunday’s incident, adding: “I see what happened as an attempt to sow discord between Muslims and Jews in Russia, who over centuries maintained good relations of friendship and cooperation.”

Kirill, a fervent supporter of President Vladimir Putin, sees outside interference in the riot, as did the Kremlin.

“I have no doubt that forces who provoked this incident will stop at nothing to cause disorder in our country,” he says in a statement, adding: “In these events we see an attempt to put this alien confrontation onto our land.”

Patriarch Kirill welcomes calls by Dagestan’s religious leaders to stop the violence and calls “for them to be listened to.”

He also calls on Russians of all faiths “to value with all forces and strengthen this inter-religions world that was built by many generations of our ancestors.”

Patriarch Kirill sat between Russia’s main mufti and chief rabbi last week as the religious leaders met with Putin in the Kremlin to discuss avoiding tensions between Russia’s different religious communities over the war between Israel and Hamas.

Rocket alerts sound in Jerusalem area, followed by thuds

Rocket alerts sound in Jerusalem and surroundings areas, followed by thuds, apparently caused by the interception of at least some of the rockets by the Iron Dome system.

Magen David Adom confirms that there are no reports of impacts in the attack.

The capital has not been targeted in several days.

Liberman calls for stronger action against Hezbollah

Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman holds a faction meeting in the Knesset on October 16, 2023. (Noam Revkin Fenton/FLASH90)
Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman holds a faction meeting in the Knesset on October 16, 2023. (Noam Revkin Fenton/FLASH90)

Yisrael Beytenu party chief Avigdor Liberman urges stronger action against Hezbollah in Lebanon, warning that the Iran-backed terror militia is signaling its intention to expand hostilities against Israel.

Liberman, whose opposition party has so far eschewed Netanyahu’s emergency government, bashes assessments by Israeli analysts and officials that Hezbollah is currently engaging only in symbolic fighting in support of Hamas and its war against Israel.

“I really, really take exception to such statements,” the hawkish former defense minister says, adding his impression that a force that is methodically destroying Israeli observation points “has attack as its intention.”

“We can’t wake up one day to a heavy salvo of missiles flying toward Haifa and Tel Aviv” with Hezbollah’s forces on the border, Liberman adds.

“We can’t finish a war without tossing Hezbollah beyond the Litani [River],” he says, adding that “no one will return to those villages” near the border with Israel, now largely evacuated by the Lebanese.

Rockets fired at Beersheba area; no injuries

Rockets are fired by terrorists in the Gaza Strip at the city of Beersheba in the south.

Two rockets impact in open areas without causing injuries or damage.

Military says ground op progressing, several cells targeted in Gaza

The Israel Defense Forces says its ground operation in the Gaza Strip is progressing, and that several terror cells have been thwarted and a number of Hamas commanders have been killed in the last few hours.

Troops have encountered a number of Hamas cells attempting to attack them in the Gaza Strip, the IDF says.

According to the IDF, ground forces directed air force combat helicopters and drones to strike the terror cells and kill their members.

Forces also demolished anti-tank guided missile and rocket launch positions, as well as other infrastructure belonging to Hamas, the IDF says.

The military says that the ground troops and air force have also killed several Hamas commanders today.

They include the head of the terror group’s naval forces in central Gaza, Muhammed Safadi; the head of Hamas’s anti-tank guided missile array in Tuffah, Moumen Hijazi; and Muhammad Awdallah, a senior Hamas operative involved in weapon manufacturing, the IDF says.

Palestinian PM says won’t take over Gaza without solution that includes West Bank

File: PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh visits in the West Bank town of Huwara, near Nablus, March 1, 2023. (Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90)
File: PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh visits in the West Bank town of Huwara, near Nablus, March 1, 2023. (Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90)

If Israel removes Hamas’s leadership in the Gaza Strip, as it has vowed to do, the Palestinian Authority will not go back to governing the territory unless there’s a “comprehensive” solution involving the West Bank as well, the PA’s prime minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, says.

“To have the Palestinian Authority go to Gaza and run the affairs of Gaza without a political solution for the West Bank, as if this Palestinian Authority is going aboard an F-16 or an Israeli tank?” Shtayyeh tells the Guardian newspaper in an interview in his office in Ramallah.

“I don’t accept it. Our president [Mahmoud Abbas] does not accept it. None of us will accept it.”

“I think what we need is a comprehensive, peaceful vision,” he adds. “The West Bank needs a solution, and then link Gaza to it within the framework of a two-state solution.”

Russia airport reopens after antisemitic riot

Russia’s Makhachkala airport in the Muslim-majority region of Dagestan reopens afternoon following an antisemitic riot the previous day.

“The arrival and departure of aircraft at Makhachkala Uytash Airport resumed at 14:00 Moscow time (1100 GMT) on October 30,” Russia’s federal air transport agency says in a statement.

Off-duty soldier arrested on suspicion of killing Palestinian man

An off-duty IDF soldier is arrested by military police on suspicion of fatally shooting a Palestinian man who was harvesting olives on Saturday.

The soldier, who serves in the religious Netzah Yehuda Brigade on the border with Lebanon but was on leave for the weekend, acknowledges being present during a confrontation between settlers and Palestinians outside the Rehelim settlement.

During the incident, Bilal Muhammed Saleh, 40, was shot in the chest and killed as he was harvesting olives near the West Bank village of As-Sawiya.

According to the Honenu organization, which provides legal aid to people suspected of anti-Palestinian activity, the soldier claims that he fired warning shots in the air and toward the ground when he was threatened by “an Arab mob” while out walking with his family.

The soldier was first questioned Saturday night, and then questioned again and arrested on Sunday. He denies having killed Saleh.

Israeli military stopped listening to Hamas handheld radios a year ago – NYT

The military’s 8200 signal intelligence unit stopped listening in to the handheld radios of Hamas operatives in Gaza a year ago because it was seen as a “waste of effort,” according to The New York Times.

In an extensive report on the intelligence failures that enabled the October 7 massacre, the paper also says that US spy agencies had largely stopped collecting information on Hamas in recent years, believing that Israel had contained the threat from the terror group.

 

Russia blames ‘external interference’ for antisemitic airport riot

Russia blames “external interference” after rioters stormed an airport in the country’s Dagestan region in a hunt for Israelis and Jews aboard a flight from Tel Aviv.

“Yesterday’s events at Makhachkala airport are, to a large extent, the result of external interference,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov tells reporters.

President Vladimir Putin is due to hold a meeting with his top advisers, including the defense minister and spy chiefs, later today to discuss “the West’s attempts to use the events in the Middle East to split Russian society,” Peskov adds.

Document drafted by defense minister Liberman in 2016 predicted Hamas onslaught

In 2016, then-defense minister Avigdor Liberman drafted an 11-page document warning of Hamas plans to burst through the Gaza border, overrun communities in southern Israel, staging massacres and taking hostages, excerpts show.

The document, parts of which were published by the Yedioth Ahronoth daily this morning, eerily presages many elements of the October 7 onslaught and indicates that Israeli officials had been aware for several years of the potential for such a Hamas assault, but apparently did not take the warnings seriously enough.

That Saturday morning some 2,500 terrorists burst into Israel by land, sea, and air, killing over 1,400 people, a majority of them civilians, in their homes and at an outdoor music festival. Hamas and allied terrorist factions also dragged at least 239 hostages — including some 30 children — back to the Gaza Strip, where they remain captive.

“Hamas intends to take the conflict into Israeli territory by sending a significant number of well trained forces (like the Nukhba [commandos] for example) into Israel to try and capture an Israeli community (or maybe even several communities) on the Gaza border and take hostages,” Liberman wrote in the document, which was labeled top secret.

“Beyond the physical harm to the people, this will also lead to significant harm to the morale and feelings of the citizens of Israel.”

In an interview Saturday night, Liberman mentioned the document, saying he gave it to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in December 2016, warning that Hamas would attack in “precisely the way it did” on October 7 if its capabilities were not dismantled.

Liberman, who unlike Benny Gantz and his party has so far opted not to join Netanyahu’s war cabinet, says Netanyahu had to be persuaded to raise the issue at a cabinet meeting, where the document was “waved away dismissively,” including by security chiefs, and that he was made to feel “arrogant” for having presented it.

Cop injured in stabbing in stable condition – MDA

A Magen David Adom medic tells Channel 12 at the scene of the stabbing that the police officer who was injured in the attack has been taken to the hospital and is in stable condition.

Rocket alerts sound in Ashdod, Ashkelon and Gaza border towns

Rocket sirens blare in the southern coastal cities of Ashdod and Ashkelon and in smaller towns in areas surrounding the Gaza Strip.

There are no reports of injuries, but one rocket scores a direct hit on a building in the Ashkelon industrial zone, sparking a fire, and at least one fragment falls on a building in Ashdod.

Police officer seriously injured in stabbing on Jerusalem light rail

Medics are responding to a stabbing attack near the Shivtei Yisrael light rail station in Jerusalem.

Magen David Adom says its medics are treating one person who is seriously injured.

The alleged assailant has been shot dead, according to first responders and police.

Police confirm that the victim is an officer.

Family of German-Israeli Shani Louk, thought to be captive, informed she is dead

(L) Ricarda Louk holds up a photo of her daughter Shani, who was abducted by Hamas terrorists on October 7, 2023. Photo on right is of Shani Louk. (courtesy, screen capture/X; used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)
(L) Ricarda Louk holds up a photo of her daughter Shani, who was abducted by Hamas terrorists on October 7, 2023. Photo on right is of Shani Louk. (courtesy, screen capture/X; used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)

The family of Shani Louk, 22, a German-Israeli woman who was believed to have been abducted to the Gaza Strip during Hamas’s October 7 onslaught, is informed of her death.

“Unfortunately we received the news yesterday that my daughter is no longer alive,” Louk’s mother Ricarda tells the German outlet RTL.

Ricarda Louk first raised the alarm about her daughter after she recognized her in videos circulating online, due to her striking tattoos and dyed hair.

The videos showed a half-naked woman lying seemingly unconscious face-down in the back of a pickup truck in Gaza filled with armed men.

She was taken when terrorists attacked a rave party in the desert near the border with the Gaza Strip.

Though Louk has been declared dead, her body has not been returned from Gaza.

Members of Louk’s family are quoted in Hebrew media as saying that they received a letter from the Israeli Zaka rescue service saying that a bone from the base of her skull, without which a person cannot survive, had been recovered and identified.

Warning of economic crisis, 300 senior economists urge reallocation of government spending

A group of about 300 senior economists appeal in a letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Finance Minister Smotrich to immediately remove all nonessential expenditure items from the state budget, in order to cope with a looming economic crisis during war.

“You do not understand the magnitude of the economic crisis that Israel’s economy is facing,” they warn in the letter. “Continuation of the current conduct harms Israel’s economy, undermines citizens’ trust in the public system, and undermines the State of Israel’s ability to recover from the situation it has found itself in.”

Among the signatories of the letter are Prof. Jacob Frenkel, former governor of the Bank of Israel; Rony Hezkiyahu, former Bank of Israel supervisor of banks and accountant general; Yair Avidan, former supervisor of banks; Haim Shani, former Finance Ministry director general; Prof. Eugene Kandel, former chairman of the National Economic Council; former deputy governor of the Bank of Israel Prof. Eitan Sheshinski; and Prof. Leo Leiderman of Tel Aviv University.

In the letter they call for a fundamental change in the order of national priorities and a massive diversion of funding toward dealing with the damages of the war, aid to victims, and the restoration of the economy — costs that are estimated at tens of billions of shekels.

“At the same time, the budget for the year 2024 must be opened and updated based on a set of priorities that reflects the needs of the entire economy in light of the war,” they urge in the letter.

IDF spokesman: Dozens of Gaza terrorists killed overnight in ‘expanded’ ground op

IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari says more troops have entered the Gaza Strip in the past day, as the military expands its ground operation.

“Overnight, troops eliminated dozens of terrorists who barricaded themselves in the buildings and tried to attack the forces that were moving in their direction,” he says, adding that the fighting is ongoing.

“We are carrying out an expanded ground operation into the Strip… forces are moving toward the terrorists, the terrorists are barricading themselves in staging grounds, and we are attacking them from the air,” Hagari adds.

Finance minister freezes Palestinian Authority funds, citing ‘support’ for Hamas

Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich says he has instructed the Finance Ministry to halt funds transferred to the Palestinian Authority and is urging the cabinet to reevaluate its policy on the transfer of funds, in light of what Smotrich characterizes as PA “support” for Hamas’s October 7 terror onslaught.

“I would like to inform you that I have instructed the Finance Ministry to stop the transfer of payments this month,” Smotrich writes to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The finance minister also requests that the cabinet discuss Israel’s policy of transferring funds collected on behalf of the Palestinian Authority — as set out by the Oslo Accords — in light of “senior PA officials’ support for the horrific massacres of the Nazi terrorist organization Hamas.”

He accompanies his request with a list of 12 inflammatory statements made since Hamas brutally murdered 1,400 people in Israel on October 7.

“The PA has once again proven the fact, which we have been raising our voices about for years, that it is a terror-supporting organization,” Smotrich writes in the letter.

“Therefore, beyond the connection of these funds to the Gaza Strip and its residents, these funds are used for activities against the State of Israel and its citizens,” he adds. “It is inconceivable that in this reality, we will continue to transfer these funds as if nothing has happened.”

Israeli tanks on the edge of Gaza City, key road cut, witnesses say

In this undated photo released by the IDF on October 30, 2023, Israeli forces are seen operating inside the Gaza Strip (IDF Spokesperson)
In this undated photo released by the IDF on October 30, 2023, Israeli forces are seen operating inside the Gaza Strip (IDF Spokesperson)

Israeli tanks entered the edge of Gaza City this morning and cut a key road from the north to the south of the war-torn Palestinian territory, witnesses tell AFP.

The witnesses say tanks were seen in the Zaytun district. “They have cut the Salahedin road and are firing at any vehicle that tries to go along it,” says one resident.

UN Security Council set to hold emergency meeting on Gaza war

UNITED NATIONS — The UN Security Council is scheduled to hold an emergency meeting this afternoon on Israel’s ground incursion in Gaza and the humanitarian plight of Palestinians there at the request of the United Arab Emirates.

The UAE, the Arab representative on the council, is one of 10 elected council members working on a new Security Council resolution on the Israel-Hamas war, which is still in discussion. The council has rejected four draft resolutions — one vetoed by the United States, one vetoed by Russia and China, and two that failed to get the minimum nine “yes” votes.

The Gaza meeting will take place after the council meets first on Western Sahara and then on Colombia.

The General Assembly, where there are no vetoes, adopted a resolution Friday by a vote of 120-14 with 45 abstentions calling for humanitarian truces leading to a cessation of hostilities. Security Council resolutions are legally binding. General Assembly resolutions are not but they are an important barometer of world opinion.

Netivot home damaged in latest rocket barrage from Gaza

Damage is caused in the southern city of Netivot after rockets launched from the Gaza Strip manage to score direct hits.

The Magen David Adom ambulance service says there are no injuries in a direct rocket impact in a home and another impact on the wall of a home.

A large amount of damage is caused, MDA says. Images show a damaged apartment building.

An estimated 30 rockets were launched from Gaza at Netivot in the latest barrage, with other photos showing several Iron Dome interceptions over the area.

Rocket alert sirens blare in Israeli towns outside the Gaza Strip

Rocket alerts sound in towns around the Gaza Strip, as well as the nearby city of Netivot.

There are no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

UK ambassador: We need Israel to win

British Ambassador to Israel Simon Walters (Gov.UK)
British Ambassador to Israel Simon Walters (Gov.UK)

The UK needs Israel to win the war with Hamas in Gaza, Britain’s Ambassador to Israel Simon Walters says.

“Hamas must not remain in control in the Gaza Strip,” he tells Army Radio in an interview, adding that “Israel must adhere to the laws of war.”

Simon also comments on the rise in antisemitic violence against Jewish communities around the world. “We’re extremely concerned about antisemitism,” he says.

“It’s worrying that during the protests we’ve seen some antisemitic slogans and some calls for jihad. The government is responding to that — it takes the safety of Jewry in the UK very seriously.”

The comments come hours after hundreds of people stormed the main airport in Russia’s Dagestan region and went onto the landing field in an attempt to confront Jewish passengers aboard a flight from Israel. The violence in the mostly Muslim region, which erupted amid the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, prompted Israel to call on Russia to protect its citizens.

IDF says dozens of Hamas gunmen killed as soldiers continue Gaza ground op

In this undated photo released by the IDF on October 30, 2023, Israeli forces are seen operating inside the Gaza Strip (IDF Spokesperson)
In this undated photo released by the IDF on October 30, 2023, Israeli forces are seen operating inside the Gaza Strip (IDF Spokesperson)

The Israel Defense Forces says ground operations continued in the northern Gaza Strip overnight, with troops killing dozens of Hamas members.

The IDF says ground forces killed terrorists who barricaded themselves in buildings in the Gaza Strip, and tried to attack troops.

In one incident, ground troops directed the Air Force to carry out a drone strike on a Hamas staging ground, killing more than 20 operatives, according to the IDF.

In another incident, the IDF says a fighter jet struck an anti-tank guided missile launch position and a number of Hamas operatives who were identified by ground troops near the Al-Azhar University in Gaza City.

The IDF says that over the past day it has carried out strikes against some 600 Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip, including weapons storage sites, hideouts, and staging grounds.

60 arrested after rioters overrun Russia airport in hunt for Jews

Sixty people have been arrested after a mob looking for Israelis and Jews overran an airport in Russia’s Caucasus republic of Dagestan, the interior ministry says.

“More than 150 active participants in the unrest have been identified, 60 of them have been arrested,” the ministry says in a statement.

Jordan asks US to deploy Patriot defense system amid jitters from Hamas-Israel war

Patriot missile launchers acquired from the US are seen deployed in Warsaw, Poland, on February 6, 2023. (Michal Dyjuk/AP)
Patriot missile launchers acquired from the US are seen deployed in Warsaw, Poland, on February 6, 2023. (Michal Dyjuk/AP)

Jordan has asked the United States to deploy its Patriot missile defense system to step up the kingdom’s border defenses as the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza causes jitters throughout the region.

“We asked the American side to help bolster our defense system with Patriot air defense missile systems,” Jordan’s army spokesperson tells state TV, according to Reuters.

“The drones have become a threat on all our fronts,” Brigadier General Mustafa Hiyari says.

Hiyari, in his comments, denies reports on social media that US military bases in Jordan are being used to transport military equipment and weapons from caches in the kingdom to Israel.

Palestinian terror leader said killed in Jenin clashes

The Palestinian WAFA news site says that a third person was killed by Israeli fire in Jenin, amid reports of heavy fighting in the West Bank city.

The man is named as Wiam Hanoun, identified online as a founder of the Islamic Jihad offshoot Jenin Brigade.

Footage shared online shows troops continuing to operate in the city after daylight.

Reports indicate that among the casualties of the fighting is an iconic arched gate in the city center.

There is no comment from the Israeli military.

33 trucks with aid entered Gaza on Sunday, UN says

More than 30 aid trucks entered Gaza on Sunday, the largest convoy to the war-ravaged Palestinian territory since deliveries began trickling in again over a week ago, the UN says.

The United Nations humanitarian organization OCHA says at least 33 trucks carrying water, food and medical supplies had gone into Gaza on Sunday, through the Rafah border crossing with Egypt.

“This is the largest delivery of humanitarian aid since 21 October, when limited deliveries resumed,” OCHA says in an update on the situation in Gaza sent early Monday.

To date, it says, 117 trucks had entered Gaza through the crossing since limited deliveries resumed to the crowded Palestinian territory of 2.4 million people.

A US government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Sunday that Israel was committed to allowing 100 aid trucks into Gaza daily — a figure the UN has said was needed to meet the most basic needs.

OCHA welcomes the latest aid deliveries, but stressed that “a much larger volume of aid is needed on a regular basis to prevent further deterioration in the dire humanitarian situation, including civil unrest.”

Of the 117 trucks allowed in so far, it says that 70 had carried medical supplies and 60 of them brought in food and nutritional items.

Only 13 carried water and sanitation supplies, it says.

Armored corps reservist killed, two others hurt in tank roll-over

A soldier was killed and two others seriously injured when a tank overturned in northern Israel Sunday, the IDF announces.

Sgt. First Class Yinon Fleischman, 31, a reserves soldier from Jerusalem, died in the incident, the military says.

An officer and a soldier, both in reserves, were injured. The military does not provide details about the circumstances of the tank roll-over.

Two killed as IDF raids Jenin, bulldozes streets

Two Palestinians are reported to have been killed by Israeli forces carrying out raids in the West Bank city of Jenin.

The official Palestinian WAFA news site reports that the two were killed when some 100 military vehicles entered the city along with bulldozers.

Hamas’s al-Qassam Brigades said it was fighting Israeli forces entering the city, including by deploying explosive devices, the Palestinian Shehab news site reports.

According to WAFA, an Israeli drone carried out an air strike during the fighting, injuring one person.

Videos from the scene show Israeli bulldozers tearing up streets and building barriers out of debris.

There is no immediate comment from the Israeli military.

US officials speak out over spike in antisemitism worldwide

US officials are raising alarms over an increase in antisemitic attacks and rhetoric worldwide, in the wake of an incident in which a mob in Dagestan, Russia, stormed an airport to find Jews who had arrived on a flight from Israel.

“The US unequivocally stands with the entire Jewish community as we witness a worldwide surge in antisemitism,” tweets National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson.

In a lengthy post, US Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism Deborah Lipstadt appears to speak out against pro-Palestinian demonstrations that have slid into antisemitic territory, noting that the US is “deeply concerned by the dramatic increase in antisemitic incidents around the world over the past three weeks.”

“Violent incidents throughout the world in October have included harassment of and attacks on Jewish individuals, and defacement of and attacks on Jewish sites. Targeting Jewish communities with hate, intimidation, or violence in relation to the conflict in the Middle East is intolerable and antisemitic — and without justification,” Lipstadt writes.

“While the United States fully supports freedom of expression and peaceful assembly, we condemn antisemitic imagery and rhetoric, which can lead to violence,” she adds.

New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler calls for condemnation of a “worldwide explosion of antisemitism.”

Sirens in Netiv Ha’asara

Rocket sirens have sounded in the community of Netiv Ha’asara, just north of the Gaza border.

Palestinians report heavy bombardments in northern Gaza.

VP Harris: US not sending troops into Israel or Gaza

US Vice President Kamala Harris says the US will not be putting boots on the ground in Israel or in Gaza.

“We have absolutely no intention nor do we have any plans to send combat troops into Israel or Gaza, period,” she tells CBS’s “60 Minutes.”

The comment echoes an earlier comment from White House National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby earlier this month that “there is no intention to put US boots on the ground.”

The US announced last week that it was sending military advisers to Israel, including an officer versed in urban warfare from US fighting in Iraq. It has sent two Naval carrier groups to the region, which it says is meant to deter Iran proxy Hezbollah from trying to enter the war. It has also put a 2,000-troop quick-response force on standby.

She says the US is supporting Israel with equipment and advice, but is not telling Jerusalem how to wage the war.

US pressured Israel to restore communications in Gaza — report

The US pushed Israel to restore communications in Gaza after it was shut off on Friday night as the IDF launched the first stage of its ground incursion into the enclave, the Washington Post reports, citing a US official.

The official says that Israel did not give a reason for shutting off communications.

“We made it clear that it had to be turned back on,” the US official tells the Post, adding that communications were subsequently restored. “They need to stay back on.”

Reports in Palestinian media late Sunday claimed some communications in northern Gaza had gone dark again.

Blast heard in Haifa, video appears to show interceptor exploding

A large blast has sounded over Haifa’s skies, though no rocket alert sounded in the city.

Videos from Haifa show a projectile streaking across the sky before it explodes mid-air, in what may have been an interception or an interceptor rocket fired following a false alarm.

There is no immediate word on the incident from military sources.

Cornell University police dispatched to kosher dining hall after antisemitic threats

The Cornell University Hillel in Ithaca New York is advising Jewish students to stay away from a building housing a kosher dining hall, after threats and antisemitic slurs were posted to an online student forum.

Police have been dispatched to the building, the Hillel statement says, and the school says that the FBI is investigating the incident as a possible hate crime.

According to the Cornell Daily Sun, the alert was prompted by comments to a student forum including a threat “to bring an assault rifle to campus and shoot all you pig jews,” from a user named hamas soldier. Other threats and antisemitic slurs, including a call to follow Jews on campus and slit their throats, were posted on the forum as well, though some posts have since been removed, the paper reports.

The Cornell police department says it is “investigating posts located on a website that contain threats of violence directed at religious groups across the campus.”

Cornell President Martha Pollack sent a statement to students saying that “we will not tolerate antisemitism at Cornell,” the Daily Sun reports.

The incident comes days after anti-Israel graffiti was discovered on campus, and amid an alarming uptick in antisemitic attacks on US campuses thought fueled by the Israel-Hamas war.

Israeli airstrikes target source of Syrian rocket fire

Israeli fighter jets struck a number of sites in southern Syria in response to rocket fire on the Golan Heights hours earlier, the Israel Defense Forces announces.

In a statement on X, the IDF says it struck launchers responsible for the cross-border fire.

There is no acknowledgment of the strikes from official Syrian media, but Hebrew-language media cite unspecified local reports of Israeli strikes near Daraa in southern Syria.

The IDF earlier said it had shelled the source of the launches in an immediate reaction to the rocket fire, which occured at around 9:45 p.m.

All of the projectiles launched from Syria landed in open areas, causing no damage or injuries, the IDF said.

 

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