Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed war on Saturday night after a bloody all-out attack by Hamas terrorists left hundreds dead.
At least 480 Israelis were killed and thousands more injured in what has become the deadliest day in the conflict for the past 50 years.
Israel blitzed Gaza City in revenge for the surprise and unprecedented attack launched by the terrorist group in the early hours of Saturday morning.
The Israeli Air Force struck targets throughout Gaza through the night as Netanyahu warned that the first part of the war was over and an “offensive formation” would start.
Whole tower blocks were reduced to rubble in the devastating air strikes as warplanes continued to bombard Gaza into Sunday morning.
Israel Defense Forces said 426 targets were struck including 10 towers used by Hamas.
Tens of thousands of Israeli soldiers were operating on the ground near the Gaza Strip, spokesperson Daniel Hagari added.
“We will take mighty vengeance for this wicked day,” Prime Minister Netanyahu warned on Saturday night as Israeli retaliation began.
“Hamas launched a cruel and wicked war. We will win this war but the price is too heavy to bear,” he said.
“Hamas wants to murder us all. This is an enemy that murders mothers and children in their homes, in their beds. An enemy that abducts elderly, children, teenage girls.”
Sirens also rang through the night as Israelis were warned of possible further attacks 24 hours after Hammas’ first rockets were fired.
Earlier marauding Islamist gunmen massacred civilians and snatched hostages off the streets after storming through the frontier from Gaza amid a hail of 5,000 rockets.
At least 250 Israelis were reportedly killed and over 1,500 wounded in the worst violence to erupt in the country for years. An Israeli general said the surprise assault “opened the gates of hell” and vowed to take swift retaliation.
On Saturday night Israeli jets attacked Hamas targets in Gaza City, and the terror group leader’s home was allegedly blown to bits in Khan Younis. Palestinian authorities said at least 232 civilians have reportedly been killed in the retaliatory airstrikes.
Meanwhile, another barrage of 150 rockets was fired by Hamas this evening, striking residential buildings in Tel Aviv. Fighting continues in over 20 locations across the states.
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