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Israel prepares for war and forms emergency government as crisis unfolds

Israel prepares for war with emergency government formed
© Chris Hearn

Israel has set up an emergency government with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu working alongside Benny Gantz as the crisis in the region unfolds following Hamas’ surprise attack.

After a series of air strikes across Gaza in the past 24 hours, Israel has mobilised 300,000 reservists in preparation for the next phase of its operation in the Hamas controlled territory.

More than 1200 people have been killed in Israel following a large scale surprise attack by Hamas with thousands of rockets hitting targets across the country – overwhelming its defences. In response, Israel has launched a series of air strikes on Gaza which have killed more than 1100 people.

Seeking to contain the war from spreading further across the Middle East, the US has deployed aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford and is making a second available as a strong deterrent to other actors considering to join the conflict.

With US military assets in the region and strong international support for Israel’s right to defend itself against attacks by Hamas, there has been a growing international effort to mediate the release of hostages captured by Hamas militants. It is understood that Egypt, Turkey and Qatar are playing roles behind-the-scenes to negotiate these releases.

While the conflict is mainly centred in Gaza following Israel taking back control of its southern territory from militants, a number of rockets have been fired into Israel via Lebanon which risks aggravating the situation. Israel has been preparing over the past several days for a possible war on two fronts

As events unfold quickly in the region, a number of countries and international organisations have urged Israel to ensure its response is proportionate – allowing for vital medical supplies and humanitarian aid to reach Palestinians trapped in Gaza due to the standoff.

Further developments are expected in the hours and days ahead as Israel gears up for possibly a large ground offensive in Gaza.

Source: The Britonian