Secrets of Shifa Hospital: What Israel found and why the raid broke Hamas

Week-long raid in Gaza hospital has inflicted major damage on Hamas’ efforts to reestablish itself in northern Gaza.

By Baruch Yedid, TPS

A nearly week-long Israeli raid on the Shifa Hospital compound in Gaza City, along with extensive operations in Khan Yunis’s Hamad district have broken the spirit of Hamas, while wrecking the terror group’s efforts to establish a mini-government administration in northern Gaza.

The terror group fears that intelligence gained from Shifa and Hamad will pave the way for an invasion of Rafah.

Since Monday morning, Israeli forces have killed over 140 terrorists holed up inside the compound. Of the roughly 800 terrorists arrested, at least 480 have been identified as members of Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Israel raided the hospital compound after receiving intelligence that senior Hamas figures were inside the compound planning attacks.

Caught off guard, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad hastily evacuated patients and visitors from the buildings, then hid among the displaced Palestinians, maintaining false identities until they were arrested.

Even now, Hamas leadership does not know which of its senior officials in Shifa have been killed or arrested. But information that has reached TPS suggests that several high-level figures are hiding in buildings near Shifa.

TPS has learned that in one of the hospital buildings, Hamas established a small government administration center with representatives of the government ministries, especially the ministries of education, interior, treasury and the police.

On the day that Israeli forces entered the compound, Hamas was about to pay salaries to hundreds of its civil and military officials. Salaries range from $200 to hundreds of dollars.

Among the Hamas figures killed in the compound was Faiq Mabhouh, who headed the Operations Directorate of Hamas’s Internal Security.

Among his responsibilities was coordinating the transfer of the food trucks in front of the clans in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas has not been able to account for other senior figures who were in the Shifa compound on the eve of the raid.

Most senior of the missing is Mahmoud Abu Watfa, the under-minister of the interior and director of the internal security forces of the terrorist organization, who holds the rank of colonel and was in charge of looking for the dead.

Tarek Silmi, the spokesman for the Islamic Jihad and a member of the leadership, was also in the building, as was his friend to the Jihad leadership, Amana Hamid, who is in charge of women’s activities in the organization. Abu Bilal Taraya, an editor of Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV channel and other journalists in the terror group’s service are also unaccounted for.

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Israel’s recent raids on Hamas facilities in the Hamad district of Khan Yunis have further broken the terror group’s morale.

This complex of 40 residential buildings, inaugurated in 2016, is named after Qatar’s Emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, who financed the project with hundreds of millions of dollars.

Israeli forces uncovered extensive terror infrastructure including a weapons factory, tunnel shafts, rocket launching positions and command centers among and beneath the residences. Large numbers of weapons, explosives and military equipment were also seized. Soldiers who were evacuating Hamad residents nabbed dozens of terrorists trying to flee among the civilians. Another 250 who remained entrenched in the towers were arrested.

Hamas now fears that the Israel’s successful operations in Shifa and Hamad will open a path for an Israeli incursion in Rafah, its last stronghold. It is possible that heavy bombings on the Al Amal neighborhood of western Khan Yunis on Saturday night were also related to intelligence findings from Shifa or Hamad.

At least 1,200 people were killed and 240 Israelis and foreigners were taken hostage in Hamas’s attacks on Israeli communities near the Gaza border on October 7. Of the remaining 134 hostages, Israel recently declared 31 of them dead.

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