On Wednesday, new information revealed that in the weeks leading up to Hamas’s Oct. 7 massacre against Israel, hundreds of the Palestinian terrorist fighters received special combat training in Iran, according to individuals who have seen intelligence related to the assault.
Officials say around 500 terrorists from Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) participated in the exercises in September, which were led by officers of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps’ (IRGC) Quds Force.
Senior Hamas, Islamic Jihad officials and IRGC Quds Force Chief Brigadier General Esmail Qaani, also attended.
At the start of the attack,Hamas attackers used aerial drones to destroy Israeli observation posts and high-tech surveillance equipment. Others used paragliders to fly into Israel and some rode on motorcycles.
The Biden administration has said Iran has regularly trained militants in Iran and elsewhere, but has stated that there is no indication of a mass training right before the attack.
Days after the Oct. 7 attack, The Wall Street Journal reported that senior Hamas, Hezbollah, and Quds Force officials planned the massacre and gave Hamas the green light to go on with the attack at a meeting in Beirut, Lebanon in early October.
Hamas officials have bragged about Tehran’s support since the attacks.
“Hezbollah and Iran supported us with weapons, expertise, and technology,” said Khaled Meshaal, a senior Hamas official in Doha, in an interview with Al Arabiya.
Approximately 1,400 Israelis, mostly civilians, were brutally tortured and murdered by Hamas fighters who poured across the border from the Gaza Strip. Many others were kidnapped and taken back to Gaza, where they are still being held hostage.