Israel takes out top Hamas leader Bassem Issa with Gaza airstrike

The New York Post:

A top Hamas leader was killed in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza on Wednesday — as Israel Defense Forces appeared poised for a possible ground invasion amid rising tensions.

Bassem Issa, the Islamic terror group’s highest-ranking military official in Gaza, was among the Hamas leaders killed when a downtown high-rise housing the group’s offices was leveled by Israeli bombs, Fox News said in a report.

Among the other Hamas leaders killed in the bombing were its head of cyber command, Jamaa Tahla; Jamal Zabeda, head of research for the group; and chief engineer Nazzem Hatib, the Times of Israel said.

The Shin Bet, Israel’s security agency, said 10 other Hamas operatives involved in weapons production and research were also killed.

The announcement comes as Israel continues to take a strong stance, saying it is willing to escalate the conflict in retaliation for Hamas missile attacks on Tel Aviv and the surrounding area in the third day of fighting.

“We eliminated senior Hamas commanders and this is just the beginning,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday.

“We will inflict blows on them that they couldn’t even dream of.”

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