JERUSALEM, Israel - In a recent development, dozens of Hamas militants have surrendered to Israeli forces, a move captured in videos that showcase the individuals being stripped down to ensure they are not carrying explosives or suicide belts.
The Israeli military interprets these surrenders as a sign of Hamas weakening, although it emphasizes that the conflict is far from over. Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, spokesperson for the Israel Defense Forces, stated, "There are a great many terrorists who have surrendered there, and this is a significant thing because these are signs that terrorists who are in difficult strongholds have decided to surrender."
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for more Hamas members to surrender, asserting, "It will take more time, the war is in full swing, but this is the beginning of the end for Hamas. I say to the Hamas terrorists: it is over. Don't die for (Hamas chief Yahya) Sinwar. Surrender – now."
Despite these developments, concerns of a widening conflict arise, as Hezbollah increased rocket fire into northern Israel, and the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen threatened to block any ships carrying supplies to Israel.
The United Nations General Assembly is set to vote on a non-binding resolution demanding a ceasefire in Gaza. Netanyahu expressed gratitude for the U.S. veto of a binding Security Council ceasefire resolution, stating, “Other countries should also understand that it is impossible on the one hand to support the elimination of Hamas, and on the other hand to call for an end to the war that will prevent the elimination of Hamas.”
In the U.S. Senate, Senators Lindsey Graham and Bernie Sanders expressed opposing views on the conflict. Sanders deemed it irresponsible for the U.S. to provide another $10 billion for Israel's war against Hamas, while Graham assured that the U.S. stands with Israel.
Internationally, thousands in Berlin and Brussels marched against anti-Semitism, reflecting a significant increase in anti-Semitic incidents in Belgium. Joël Rubinfeld, President of the Belgian League Against Anti-Semitism, highlighted the urgency of the situation, stating, "(We are here) because there is a huge increase of anti-Semitism in Belgium since October 7th."
With Israel facing a two-front war in Gaza and on the northern border, IDF chief of staff Herzi Halevi emphasized the need for a return to safety and security for all communities, outlining a military approach to achieve this goal.