Jul 7, 2023
Israel’s military invasion of the Jenin Refugee Camp, dubbed “Operation Home and Garden” came to an end late Tuesday night. It left at least 12 Palestinians dead, and one Israeli soldier.
Israel has, predictably, declared the operation a success. They say 120 Palestinians were arrested and weapons caches were destroyed, including bomb making materials. The Israeli Defense Minister, Yoav Gallant, said: “in the last two days we interrupted the weapon production process, seized thousands of bombs, some small and some large, and destroyed dozens of factories, workshops and laboratories.” Our reporters have not yet been able to verify his claim that “dozens” of locations related to the armed resistance in Jenin were destroyed.
While the military and political leadership in Israel gloats, Palestinians in Jenin are telling a different story of the largest attack on the camp since 2002’s Operation Defensive Shield. In this assault, Israel deployed up to 2,000 troops backed by armored vehicles, attack helicopters, and warplanes. They turned family homes into sniper positions. They fired tear gas and live ammunition into hospitals- in one case rendering the Emergency Room facilities unusable and forcing staff to treat injured people in the building’s main hallway. They destroyed large portions of the refugee camp’s vital infrastructure, digging up roads throughout the camp with armored bulldozers, knocking out segments of the electrical system, and damaging key water pipelines.
As the story from inside the camp emerges, it is clear that this invasion was not an easy one for the region’s most powerful military. The resistance groups in the camp appear to have put up a strong defense, preventing the Israeli military from exercising full control over the area. Benjamin Netanyahu’s government may have thought they would have a repeat of the 2002 invasion. They clearly did not.
Today I’m joined by our Palestine News Team to discuss all of these events and what the ramifications are, politically, for Palestinians, Israelis and the international community. Yumna Patel is our Palestine News Director, based in Bethlehem. Faris Giacaman is our Managing Editor, based in Ramallah. Mariam Barghouti is our Senior Palestine Correspondent, currently in the United States. And Tareq Hajjaj is our Gaza Correspondent, based in Gaza City.
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