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Gaza suffers full communications ‘blackout’ as Israel’s ground incursion begins

Disclaimer: This story is ongoing and will be updated as new details emerge

The Gaza Strip, Palestine – Israel has finally begun its long-awaited ground invasion of Gaza Friday evening, deploying troops, tanks, and aircraft to select regions of the war-torn city. The controversial decision to enter Gaza comes on the heels of an unprecedented bombing campaign of civilian targets, which has led to a communications blackout of the entire strip.

According to US officials, a “rolling start” to the Israeli ground invasion of Gaza is officially underway, sparking armed clashes between the IDF and Hamas resistance fighters in areas around Northern Gaza. The attack was reportedly launched after diplomatic talks regarding the release of Israeli captives broke down, triggering unprecedented airstrikes and further straining the lives of up to 2 million Palestinians stranded inside the war zone.

“In addition to the attacks carried out in the last few days, ground forces are expanding their operations tonight,” explained IDF spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari in a news briefing. Israel denied launching a full-scale invasion but admitted that the “incursion” was backed by air strikes targeting suspected underground tunnels used by Hamas and other resistance elements.

During this time, IDF bombings severed the last international communications cable into Gaza, creating a full communications blackout within the region. The sudden loss of phone and internet services, confirmed by the Palestinian telecom company Jawwal, has only made navigating the pitch-black ruins of the cordon all the more difficult for those still seeking shelter from the growing storm.

Map of the current ground “incursion” as of the early morning of October 28th. Map: Rybar on Telegram.

“The intense bombing in the last hour caused the destruction of all remaining international routes linking Gaza to the outside world,” Jawwal said. As a result, multiple organizations tasked with providing medical treatment to displaced Palestinians—including the World Health Organisation and the Palestinian Red Crescent—have lost contact with their teams on the ground.

Hamas, however, remains defiant. Vowing to go “full-force” against what it calls “Israeli aggression,” armed resistance fighters engaged with advancing IDF troops overnight in the towns of Beit Hanoun and in the central area of Al-Bureij.

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“The Al-Qassam brigades and all the Palestinian resistance forces are completely ready to confront (Israel’s) aggression with full force and frustrate its incursions,” said Hamas in a statement early Saturday. “Netanyahu and his defeated army will not be able to achieve any military victory.”

Meanwhile, the ground invasion has drawn international condemnation in the form of the United Nations, which, as of Friday evening, hurriedly drew plans for an “immediate ceasefire” in Gaza. The General Assembly ultimately passed a “non-binding” resolution late in the session, which called for a truce between the parties on humanitarian lines. The measure was supported by 120 member nations. Fourteen nations, including the United States and Israel, voted against the measure, while 45 abstained.

“Today is a day that will go down in infamy. We have all witnessed that the UN no longer holds even a shred of legitimacy or relevance,” said Israeli UN Ambassador Gilad Menashe Erdan in a statement. “It does not even name Hamas. Not once! As if this war started alone…writers failed to name Hamas terrorists for this egregious war crime.”

Public outcry in opposition to the Israeli war effort has only intensified over the past three weeks, as protests, demonstrations, and, in some cases, riots have erupted across the globe. Germany, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, France, the United States, and many others count themselves as part of a long list of countries that have hosted anti-Zionist protests, with many unwilling to back down in the face of systemic oppression.

“After 3 weeks of carpet bombing a caged population of millions while cutting off water, electricity, food & medicine, Israel has severed all telecommunications,” said journalist Abby Martin on X, formerly known as Twitter. “Now they can commit genocide without the annoyance of their victims telling the world about it.”

A scene from Gaza as Israeli warplanes continue to bomb targets into the night of October 27th-28th. Photo: Al Jazeera

“There is no ‘American pressure’ to postpone a Jewish ground attack on Gaza,” commented Mike Peinovich, Chairman of the North American-based anti-Zionist organization, the National Justice Party, on Telegram. “‘American pressure’ is always something that the Jews in Israel use as a scapegoat whenever they hesitate or are afraid. They save face by pretending that America held them back.”

“America is not holding them back. America is resupplying them, planning the op for them, and even sending US special forces in to lead the operation because the Israelis are not competent on their own to do anything but bomb…women and children.” he continued.

Unrepentant Israeli air strikes have saturated Gaza since hostilities began on October 7th. The Palestinian death toll in the current conflict—which includes countless women and children—currently stands at approximately 7,300 people, according to recent estimates. Without access to food, water, shelter, and now basic communications, many fear that number could be even higher.

Israel’s strategy of indiscriminate bombing has landed it in diplomatic hot waters with both staunch allies and rivals alike. Just this weekend, Israel bombed a series of ancient holy sites—including a famous Christian church and several centuries-old mosques—as it ramped up attacks in one of the deadliest days in Palestinian history. Earlier in the month, more than 500 Palestinians were reportedly killed after Israel was accused of striking an area outside a Christian hospital. While both sides blame each other for the attack, ample video evidence and independent studies suggested that Israel was at fault and likely deployed a precision airburst munition to inflict maximum casualties.

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