Fighting in an “asymmetric war” against the clock: Israel wants to destroy the largest number of Palestinian missile launchment platforms before the UN call for a “ceasefire” (which will be operated by the US to allow a “honorable” withdrawal for Israel) and Hamas seeks to capture or kill as many Israeli soldiers to provoke a “moral defeat” to the Jewish state so the World can see it.
It is a war between David and Goliath: Israel is a nuclear power that has an army (called the Tsahal), with 186,500 troops (which can triple in a few hours thanks to the mobilization of 445,000 reservists).
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF equipped with conventional and nuclear power, according to recent data provided by the specialized publication “The Middle East Military Balance” – is divided into 16 divisions and 76 brigades armed with 3930 armored vehicles, 8000 armored transport units and 1348 artillery units.
The largest military strength and fire power Tsahal has is the aircraft that has 798 fighter jets, 87 transport aircraft and 297 helicopters (including assault units: Apache, Cobra and Defender), while the air defense has a hundred missile batteries.
The Israeli navy deployed six nuclear powered submarines, 20 fighter aircraft and 34 Coast Guard. It is been said that the ground invasion in Gaza involves the participation of 10,000 Israeli troops, supported by artillery, tanks and light armored vehicles, bombers B15 and B16, and helicopters firing teleguided missiles by electronic systems that “sweep” the geography and constantly overcrowded space of Gaza.
Hamas (Islamic Resistance Movement) and its armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, have about 25,000 men in addition to the 2,000 or 3,000 rockets Katiuska, Grad and Qassam.
Hamas fighters have Kalashnicov assault rifles, machine guns, hundreds of RPG launchers, 120 mm mortars, Sagger anti-tank rifles capable of destroying vehicles and buildings three kilometers away and dozens of portable antiaircraft missiles Sa-14.
Israel attacks in a compact front of military invasion to a sovereign country and Hamas is fighting a guerrilla war to defend its territory. Fighting in a small strip of land of 360 km2 “locked” between the Mediterranean Sea, the territory of Israel and a 11 km border with Egypt, (an ally of Israel).
Living in an overcrowded Gaza Strip almost one and half million Palestinians and unable to escape are now facing an invasion without food, no electricity, no fuel, no medicines and in a state of humanitarian catastrophe, according to the UN.
As for the mode of fighting: Israel bombards positions of Hamas located among civilian populations with artillery fire and missiles to “clear the area and then move its troops on the objectives, while Hamas troops attack flanks of Israeli columns by “surprise” and then disappear.
In the middle, the “collateral victims” of the civilian population subjected to massive Gaza crossfire of Israelis tanks, aircraft and batteries “to clear the area” for the advancement of their commands. In eight days of the operation “Cast Lead”, Israel killed more than 600 Palestinians and wounded and/or mutilated more than 3000, one third of the victims are women and children.
For USA, the Western powers and big media is not about an “Israeli military slaughter in Gaza,” but an “armed conflict between Israel and Hamas.”