Detailed planning and practice went into the Hamas attack on Israel

It’s becoming clear that Hamas had been preparing and planning for the attack which took place last weekend for a long time, more than a year. Last night, CNN reported on videos released by Hamas which show the group practicing for the attack at six sites prepared for that purpose inside Gaza. As you’ll see, they built a mock-up of one of the border gates and practiced getting through it and taking hostages.


Israel has a long history of strikes against militant training camps so how did they miss it? How did the US miss it as well? There’s a report out today that the US did issue some warnings about Hamas prior to the attack but they weren’t specific.

One update from September 28 warned, based on multiple streams of intelligence, that the terror group Hamas was poised to escalate rocket-attacks across the border. An October 5 wire from the CIA warned generally of the increasing possibility of violence by Hamas. Then, on October 6, the day before the attack, US officials circulated reporting from Israel indicating unusual activity by Hamas — indications that are now clear: an attack was imminent.

None of the American assessments offered any tactical details or indications of the overwhelming scope, scale and sheer brutality of the operation that Hamas carried out on October 7, sources say. It is unclear if any of these US assessments were shared with Israel, which provides much of the intelligence that the US bases its reports on.

So these were sort of generalized concerns Hamas was up to something but nothing warning of a specific or unusually large attack. A source told CNN that nothing about the intel seemed new. Hamas is always up to something and is always planning attacks.


This afternoon NBC News has an exclusive report offering more detail on the level of planning. When Hamas fighters were killed in southern Israel, they left behind detailed instructions in Arabic which show that every element of the attack including the targeting of specific kibbutzim was pre-planned in detail.

Documents exclusively obtained by NBC News show that Hamas created detailed plans to target elementary schools and a youth center in the Israeli kibbutz of Kfar Sa’ad, to “kill as many people as possible,” seize hostages and quickly move them into the Gaza Strip.

The attack plans, which are labeled “top secret” in Arabic, appear to be orders for two highly trained Hamas units to surround and infiltrate villages and target places where civilians, including children, gather. Israeli authorities are still determining the death toll in Kfar Sa’ad…

Another page labeled “Top Secret Maneuver” describes a plan for a Hamas unit to secure the east side of Kfar Sa’ad while a second unit controls the west. It says “kills as many as possible” and “capture hostages.” Other orders include surrounding a dining hall and holding hostages in it…

The Israeli officials said that the wider group of documents show that Hamas had been systematically gathering intelligence on each kibbutz bordering Gaza and creating specific plans of attack for each village that included the intentional targeting of women and children.


The NY Times just published a similar report on how Hamas was able to overrun so much territory so quickly. The answer is that they had lots of detailed information.

After crossing into Israel, they headed east on five motorcycles, two gunmen on each vehicle, shooting at passing civilian cars as they pressed forward.

Ten miles later, they veered off the road into a stretch of woodland, dismounting outside an unmanned gate to a military base. They blew open the barrier with a small explosive charge, entered the base and paused to take a group selfie. Then they shot dead an unarmed Israeli soldier dressed in a T-shirt.

For a moment, the attackers appeared uncertain about where to go next. Then one of them pulled something from his pocket: a color-coded map of the complex…

Hamas planning documents, videos of the assault and interviews with security officials show that the group had a surprisingly sophisticated understanding of how the Israeli military operated, where it stationed specific units, and even the time it would take for reinforcements to arrive…

Hamas made Israelis think it was “busy with governing Gaza,” said Ali Barakeh, a Hamas leader, in a television interview on Monday. “All the while, under the table, Hamas was preparing for this big attack,” he added.


The whole story is worth reading. It’s very clear that some fighters were sent to take out military targets while others were sent to civilian sites, told to kill and take hostages. All Israeli homes have built in bomb shelters but those rooms usually don’t have locks. They are meant to protect people from rocket attacks not armed militants. So in several cases people would flee to these shelters and then it was just a question of whether or not the terrorists could get inside. The Times reports the instruction documents found on the bodies of the militants are dated October 2022, once again showing this plan has been in the works for at least a year.

Finally, Hamas released a video today showing fighters holding Israeli children. I think the idea here was to show that the children aren’t being harmed and are being cared for by Hamas.

This person says this is a translation of what they are saying in the clip.


That sounds nice but these kids are now hostages and presumably some or all of them are also now orphans since Hamas killed their parents. We know that Hamas has already murdered some of the people they took hostage so their reassurances aren’t worth much. People who use babies as human shields are not good or merciful people.

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