Netanyahu vows to turn Gaza into ‘ruins’
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to “take revenge for this black day” and turn every site used by Palestinian militant group Hamas into “ruins” following a large-scale attack by the militant group on southern Israel.
In a televised address late on Saturday, he called Gaza “the city of evil,” urging civilians to immediately leave the overcrowded Palestinian exclave, home to an estimated 2 million people.
“All the places that Hamas hides in, operates in, we will turn them into ruins,” Netanyahu said. “Get out of there now.
“What happened today has never been seen before in Israel, and I will ensure it never happens again. The entire government supports this decision. The IDF will immediately use all its power to destroy Hamas’ capabilities,” he added, warning that Israel is headed for a “difficult” war that is set to “take time.”
The new escalation between Hamas and Israel began early on Saturday, when the militant group launched a major attack from Gaza. It attacked multiple locations in southern Israel, overrunning military installations and breaching the border at a number of points. During the attacks, the militants destroyed and captured a range of Israeli military hardware, as well as killing and taking prisoner soldiers and civilians, footage circulating online shows.
The hostilities continued through the day, with Hamas launching several massive barrages of rockets deeper into Israeli territory. Israel conducted multiple airstrikes on Gaza, destroying several high-rise buildings allegedly used by Hamas. Netanyahu has described the escalation as a “war,” announcing the call-up of reservists to further bolster the ranks of the country’s military.