Were five Gazan kids killed by IDF or Islamic Jihad during Breaking Dawn? - report

The IDF initially said that five children were killed by an Islamic Jihad rocket, but a new report suggests the Israeli military is responsible.

 A fireball and smoke erupt following an Israeli air strike on a building in Gaza City, on August 6, 2022. (photo credit: ATTIA MUHAMMED/FLASH90)
A fireball and smoke erupt following an Israeli air strike on a building in Gaza City, on August 6, 2022.
(photo credit: ATTIA MUHAMMED/FLASH90)

Five Palestinian children from Jabalya were killed by an IAF airstrike during Operation Breaking Dawn and not by a misfired Islamic Jihad rocket, as the IDF initially said, Haaretz reported Tuesday, citing sources in the Israeli defense establishment.

The children were killed on August 7 – the last day of the three-day conflict between Israel and Islamic Jihad – near the Fallujah cemetery outside Jabalya, Shehab News reported at the time.

A military investigation showed that no Islamic Jihad rockets were fired at the time of the incident, but IAF data allegedly showed it struck targets in the area at the time of the incident, Haaretz reported.

“They were shot by an occupation missile while they were visiting the grave of their grandfather,” MK Ahmad Tibi said in response to the report. “This is how ‘self-defense’ looks sometimes.”

Tibi listed the dead children as Jamil Najam, three; Ihab Najam, 13; Muhammad Najam, 16; Hamed Najam, 16; and Natami Karsh, 15.

 Smoke and fire rise above Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza strip, during an Israeli air strike, on August 5, 2022 (credit: YOUSSEF MASSOUD/AFP via Getty Images) Smoke and fire rise above Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza strip, during an Israeli air strike, on August 5, 2022 (credit: YOUSSEF MASSOUD/AFP via Getty Images)

Misfired Islamic Jihad rockets

The IDF told Israeli media a misfired Islamic Jihad rocket was responsible for the deaths. At the time, the IDF said a preliminary inquiry showed that a rocket misfire also killed three people in Bureij. On Monday, The Jerusalem Post determined that a Hamas operative, Yasser Nimr al-Nabahin, was also killed in the incident in Bureij.

On August 6, an Islamic Jihad rocket misfire claimed the lives of at least nine people in Jabalya, including four children. The IDF published a video to support its claims.
“Tonight, Islamic Jihad terrorists fired a rocket toward Israel, which fell short inside Gaza, hitting a Palestinian home in the Jabalya neighborhood and tragically killing at least four children,” Prime Minister’s Office international spokeswoman Keren Hajioff said in a video published on August 7.

Summary of Operation Breaking Dawn

On August 8, IDF Spokesman Brig.-Gen. Ran Kochav said of the 26 civilians who died the previous week, 11 were killed in Israeli airstrikes, and at least 15 were killed by Islamic Jihad rockets. This would change to 16 killed by IAF airstrikes and about 10 killed by Islamic Jihad if the Haaretz report is accurate.

“Tonight, Islamic Jihad terrorists fired a rocket towards Israel, which fell short inside Gaza, hitting a Palestinian home in the Jabaliya neighborhood and tragically killing at least four children.”

Keren Hajioff

Gazan terrorist organizations launched about 1,100 rockets during Operation Breaking Dawn, according to statistics published by the IDF. Almost 200 of them fell within the Gaza Strip.