Sun 10 Dec 2023 6:59 pm - Jerusalem Time
Israeli army estimates: The year 2024 will be a “year of combat”... including for reserve forces
Israeli army estimates indicate that the year 2024 will be a “year of combat,” as the Israeli occupation army will continue its military operations within the framework of its war on the Gaza Strip, military alert, and the widespread deployment of forces on the northern front, amid expectations that all battalions belonging to the reserve forces will be required to continue military service during next year for at least one month.
This came according to what a senior official in the Israeli army said, in a press briefing to military correspondents in the Israeli media, reported by the Israeli Broadcasting Authority and Channel 12, and the most prominent thing in it was that the estimates and expectations on which the Israeli army is basing its preparations for the year 2024 are that it will be a “combat year.”
According to the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation (“Kan 11”), the Israeli army’s expectations are that “all reserve battalions will be required to fight within the framework of military service for at least one month in one of the sectors, while the regular battalions will be required to fight, not train.”
The estimates conveyed by the military official also indicate that "the Israeli army's intensive combat operations will continue during the next year, including the continued positioning of reinforced forces on the northern border with Lebanon, in addition to the combat operations that will continue in the Gaza Strip."
According to "Kan 11", after the end of the military operations in the northern Gaza Strip and in Khan Yunis, the Israeli army "does not rule out" the possibility of launching large-scale ground operations "in other areas" of the besieged Strip, specifically in the "central region, which includes the Nuseirat and Bureij camps" and also in Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip.
The official broadcasting authority stated, "The current phase of the ground incursion into the Gaza Strip will take a long time and its purpose is to reduce the level of resistance of the Palestinian factions on the ground."
The next phase of combat operations will aim to achieve “operational control” of the area, allowing the IDF to carry out air and ground offensive operations, and to create conditions for the return of residents of the surrounding Israeli towns in the Gaza Strip.
Field conditions in the Gaza Strip
The Israeli army claims, according to estimates reviewed by the military official, that it has “eliminated” 7,000 members of the Palestinian resistance factions in the Gaza Strip, attacked more than 22,000 targets, destroyed thousands of tunnel nozzles and underground targets, and arrested hundreds of Palestinian fighters.
Regarding the Hamas movement’s missile stock, Israeli army estimates indicate that the Al-Qassam Brigades still possess “hundreds of medium- and long-range missiles,” and that the “decrease” in the number of missiles launched by the resistance factions is due to “the attacks carried out by the Israeli army and the occupation of the area from which they are launched.”
According to the military official, “There are areas in the Gaza Strip that Hamas no longer controls militarily, but despite the achievements, we are not close to the end of the fighting.” He stressed that “the exhaustion of the ground incursion phase will take a long time,” stressing that the next phase will witness an expansion of military operations to include the city of Rafah and refugee camps in the central region.
Preparations for next year
Channel 12 pointed out that the Israeli army’s preparations “will include additional budgets to finance the continuation of the reserve forces’ service in all sectors,” and pointed out the possibility of examining the possibility of amending the freeze law to increase the duration of compulsory military service to more than two years and eight months.
It added that the Israeli army will work during the coming period to build “a new defense system with special security, infrastructure and technological measures, to secure the future return of displaced Israelis from the border areas in southern Lebanon, as well as from Israeli towns around the besieged Gaza Strip.”
Regarding the Houthi threat, the Israeli strategy is international mobilization to confront the Yemeni group’s attacks, including pressure to move American, British, and French warships and deploy them in the Red Sea. The military official revealed that "officers from these countries are in Israel for coordination" in an attempt to deal with maritime threats.