IDF holding back on striking Hamas chief, Oct. 7th mastermind

Sinwar has led Hamas since 2017 after he was released as part of a prisoner exchange to free Israeli captive soldier Gilad Shalit.

By Vered Weiss, World Israel News

The IDF knows the location of Yahya Sinwar Hamas chief and mastermind of the October 7th massacre but is unable to strike because he is using some of the remaining hostages as human shields, according to several military sources.

Former IDF general and head of IDF Military Intelligence Directorate  Amos Yadlin told Kan radio that the “butcher of Khan Younis” is “surrounded by hostages in the tunnel network in Gaza.”

Although Yaldin didn’t provide details, the statement has been supported by multiple Israeli military sources.

Jonathan Schanzer, vice president at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, DC posted on X that he had been hearing similar reports “from informed people for weeks.”

Schanzer told The Times of Israel, “The reports coming out of Israel over the last two days echo what I have heard for a few weeks, namely, the Israelis have a good idea where Yahya Sinwar is hiding.”

He added, “My assumption, although not confirmed, is that he is in the tunnels under Khan Younis.”

Schanzer continued,”What I heard specifically is that he had surrounded himself with Israeli hostages. He is using them as human shields.”

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Yahya Sinwar, along with his brother Mohammed Sinwar and Mohammed Deif planned the October 7th massacre that led to a campaign of rape, mutilation, torture, murder, and kidnapping in Israel’s southern communities that left 1,200 dead and 240 hostages.

Sinwar is 61 years old and has led Hamas since 2017 after he was released as part of a prisoner exchange to free Israeli captive soldier Gilad Shalit.

In 2008 while in prison, Sinwar had a life-threatening brain tumor and was operated on and treated by Israeli doctors.

He learned fluent Hebrew and spoke to Israeli hostages in the initial days after October 7th.

Sinwar reportedly said, “Hello, I am Yahya Sinwar. You are the most protected here. Nothing will happen to you.”

Released hostage Yocheved Lifshitz told Davar newspaper, “Sinwar was with us three to four days after we arrived. I asked him how he is not ashamed to do such a thing to people who have supported peace all these years.”

“He didn’t answer,” she added. “He was silent.”