Day 21 of the Gaza conflict began when Hamas, a Palestinian organisation, unexpectedly attacked Israel across the border, killing over 1,400 people. Israel has been bombing Gaza since the October 7 raid, which resulted in the deaths of over 7,000 Palestinians.
A deeper incursion into Gaza was carried out by the Israeli military on Friday in preparation for a ground invasion against Hamas. The vast Hamas tunnel network, where the organisation is alleged to have kidnapped many people, presents one of the Israeli army’ toughest obstacles, however.
According to reports, Hamas has a variety of tunnel systems extending beneath the 360 square kilometres of sandy coastline and its boundaries, some of which are hundreds of km long and as deep as 80 metres.
Israel is apparently producing “sponge bombs,” which cause a brief explosion of foam that quickly expands and then hardens, in order to combat Hamas through their network of tunnels. The Telegraph said that Israel has been experimenting chemical grenades, which are designed to block gaps or tunnel openings where Hamas agents may escape but don’t contain explosives.
It is stated that these gadgets are housed in a plastic container for protection with a metal barrier separating two different liquids. Upon activation, these liquids combine and move in the direction of their target. In 2021, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) were observed utilising these gadgets while conducting training in a simulated tunnel network close to the Gaza border.
Established in Gaza in 1987, Hamas is said to have begun tunnel construction in the middle of the 1990s. One of the main factors influencing Hamas’s superiority in Gaza over the Israeli-occupied West Bank is the tunnel network. When Israel evacuated its settlers and soldiers from Gaza in 2005, tunnelling became simpler, and in 2006, Hamas won an election to take authority.