Israeli Military Says It Has Enough Weapons for Rafah Operation

Ceasefire negotiations have ended and Israel will proceed with its Rafah invasion as planned

The Israeli military said Thursday that it has enough munitions for its planned operation in Rafah, comments that came a day after President Biden said he would withhold the shipment of heavy bombs to Israel if it proceeds with a major attack on the city’s “population centers.”

Israeli Defense Forces spokesman Daniel Hagari said, “The IDF has armaments for the missions it is planning, including missions in Rafah. We have what we need.” US officials have also said that Israel has enough bombs to attack Rafah.

Israel started its operation in Rafah on Monday by capturing the border crossing that connects to Egypt and launching strikes across the city. The US has said these steps are “limited” and that it’s only opposed to a major invasion of the city. But the situation continues to escalate, and satellite images show that the IDF is expanding ground operations in the city.

Reuters reported on Thursday that ceasefire talks in Egypt have ended without a deal and cited an Israeli official who said the Rafah operation would now proceed as planned. The city is packed with over 1 million civilians, including about 600,000 children, who have no safe place to go. Israel’s closing of the Rafah border crossing has also tightened the starvation blockade on Gaza.

The White House has said that a major Israeli operation would not defeat Hamas, reflecting the overall US position that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s goal to “eradicate” Hamas is unrealistic. “Smashing into Rafah, in his [Biden’s] view, will not advance that objective,” White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said.

While Biden has threatened to withhold certain munitions if Israel launches a full-scale invasion of Rafah, he also pledged the US would ultimately continue to support Israel. “We’re going to continue to make sure Israel is secure in terms of Iron Dome and their ability to respond to attacks that came out of the Middle East recently,” he said on Wednesday.

Other US officials have pledged that Israel will receive all of the $17 billion in military aid that was recently approved by Congress, and billions of dollars worth of other weapon shipments are still on their way. But Biden’s warning about Rafah still has Israeli officials and Israel supporters in the US fuming.

Netanyahu appeared to respond to Biden on Thursday and said Israel would stand alone if necessary. “If we need to stand alone, we will stand alone,” he said. “I have said that if necessary — we will fight with our fingernails.”

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.