As part of an intensive effort to destroy the underground infrastructure that has supported Hamas’ operations, U.S. officials briefed on the Israeli military’s operations claim that seawater has begun to be pumped into the organization’s extensive network of tunnels in Gaza.
The initial attempt to flood the tunnels with water from the Mediterranean is one of a number of strategies Israel is employing in an effort to demolish and clear the tunnels.
A defense minister of Israel spokesperson declined to comment, citing the classified nature of the tunnel operations.
According to Israeli officials, Hamas’s extensive underground network has been crucial to its battlefield operations.
Hamas reportedly uses the tunnel system to store rockets and munitions, maneuver combatants across the battlefield, and provide command and control to the organization’s leaders.
Additionally, Israel suspects that certain hostages are being maintained within tunnels.
As per statements made by U.S. officials, the Israelis are reportedly still assessing the viability of incorporating seawater into a 300-mile-long underground labyrinth featuring numerous blast entrances.
U.S. officials stated that tunnel flooding, which would likely last for weeks, began around the time Israel added two more pumps to the five pumps installed last month and conducted preliminary testing.
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