Israel faces the horrifying prospect of losing hundreds of troops in a bloodbath battle through a maze of booby-trapped tunnels when they storm Gaza, intelligence documents have revealed.
Brave soldiers will be ordered into 300 miles of tunnels dubbed “The Gaza Metro”, but the daunting underground mission will see them come up against heavily armed Hamas terrorists that could see hundreds killed.
However, it is crucial the mission is completed in order to stop Hamas terrorists from launching surprise deadly attacks during the planned occupation of their Gaza City stronghold.
Israeli military planners studying Hamas’ reign of terror, which has claimed some 1,400 lives, fear the group is capable of setting terrifying hi-tech traps, according to The Sun.
Militants were armed with encrypted phones, operational handbooks, and their own intelligence documents, while drones flew overhead to pick out targets. They were able to get past electronic surveillance at the border and set up ammunition supply lines.
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But there are now fears the horrors experienced on October 7 was just the start of the Hamas masterplan – and the second phase could include luring Israeli troops into a deadly trap.
Military and defence analyst and RUSI Associate Fellow Sam Cranny-Evans warned Hamas militants could mine the tunnels and deploy improvised explosive devices to wipe out IDF troops tasked with clearing the route.
He told MailOnline: “The tactics employed by the IDF will depend in part on the tactics used by al-Qassam (Hamas armed wing).
“It is likely that drones will be used to drop bombs on Israeli forces, and that improvised explosive devices (IEDs) will be deployed to slow them down.
“The IDF has experienced these technologies, but they do have the ability to inflict serious casualties.”
Colin Clarke, research director at the New York-based Soufan Center think-tank, warned Hamas “knows its tunnels by heart”.
He said: “Some are probably booby-trapped. Preparing to fight in such terrain would require extensive intelligence, which the Israelis may not have.
“When tunnels are found, they can be closed off to shut in the people inside. In this case, the order is likely to be for no quarter to be given.”
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The 40 tunnels built by Hamas under the Gaza border, as well as the defensive network under Gaza City, enables them to lie in wait, encased in reinforced concrete up to 40ft below the ground level.
An intelligence dossier seen by The Sun, collated by the Intelligence Directorate’s Document Collection and Technological Gathering Division, shows the Israeli assault on those tunnels will start with the dropping of bunker-buster Massive Ordnance Penetrator bombs.
That blitz will be followed by waves of the Israeli Defence Forces’ specially trained Subterranean Combat Teams, who will send in drones and robots to map out enemy positions and beam live pictures back to intelligence teams.
The tunnels will be scattered with false turns and explosive traps, with some sections likely to be mined and designed to collapse.
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But in another horror scenario faces incoming soldiers as the tunnels could be using close to 200 Israeli hostages.
Defence analyst Paul Beaver told The Sun: “In my 40 years of experience, the Gaza operation unfolding now is the biggest challenge Israel has faced. It will not take days. This could take weeks and even months and cost countless lives.
“If Israel plans to occupy Gaza, which I believe would be a huge mistake, it must clear those tunnels of every last Hamas fighter.
“Hamas is not troubled by civilian casualties, is well dug in and holds a huge advantage over its enemy as they prepare to attack.”
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