Before Hamas’s Oct. 7 attacks on Israel, approximately 500 militants received training in Iran. This training, was attended by senior Palestinian officials and Iranian Brig. Gen. Esmail Qaani, was conducted by the Quds Force, Iran’s foreign-operations arm. As a result, over 1,400 people, mainly civilians, were killed when Hamas terrorists infiltrated from Gaza. More than 250 people, including infants, young girls, elderly people, and toddlers, were abducted and are being held captive in Gaza.
Hamas employed various tactics during the attack, including using drones, paragliders, and motorcycles. U.S. officials acknowledged that Iran has trained militants but denied evidence of mass training specific to the Oct. 7 attack. Israel’s military has openly commented on Iran’s support to Hamas, emphasizing financial, training, and technological aid. Following the attack, Israel initiated an extensive air campaign against Gaza, targeting numerous Hamas locations.
Iran’s support for regional militant groups is well-established. The IRGC, answering only to Iran’s Supreme Leader, has a history of training militants across the Middle East. Hamas has publicly acknowledged Iran’s assistance, especially in terms of weaponry and technology. Historically, the relationship between Iran and Hamas has seen its highs and lows. While their alliance weakened in 2012, by 2017, ties strengthened as Iran began offering increased military support.
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