Up to 50 airstrikes were launched in the Gaza Strip Sunday, August 21st. Palestinians on social media state that the airstrikes took place all over the strip. A death toll has not yet been confirmed. Palestinian Journalists have stated that at least 30 of the airstrikes took place within 15 minutes.
Some are theorizing that IDF launched this attack in order to test out their brand new F-35 fighter jets they were recently gifted, compliments of the U.S. taxpayer. Using the Gaza strip as a testing ground for new military equipment is commonplace for the Israeli military.
The official reason for the attacks given by the Israeli military was that they were in response to a home-made scrap metal rocket allegedly fired by militants prior to the offensive, which failed to make contact with anyone.
The Israeli military stated prior to the bombardment that they had targeted two Hamas camps with aircrafts and tanks in response to the rocket. The following aerial assault appears to be yet another demonstration of collective punishment.
Observers have stated that the intensity of Sunday’s attacks are part of the strategy of Avigdor Lieberman, the new Israeli defense minister. Lieberman was appointed in May.
Elizabeth Tsurkov, Research Fellow at the Forum for Regional Thinking stated that “Israeli new ultra-right Minister of Defense, Avigdor Lieberman, is flexing his muscles at the expense of Gaza’s residents,” in a recent tweet regarding on the airstrikes.
The following are a few photographs taken during the attacks, as well as some footage where large buildings are shown being targeted by the bombs.
Below is a video of a Palestinian child by the name of Rahaf Hassan who was martyred in the attack being held in the arms of her devastated father.
Over 2,100 Palestinians were killed during the last major Gaza offensive, Operation Protective Edge. According to the UN, at least 500 of them were children and nearly 300 of them were women. The Palestinian Ministry of Health states that 11,100 Palestinians were wounded, including 3374 children, 2088 women, and 410 elderly.