Senior Israeli military officials told local media at the weekend that the ground war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip is going extremely well.
According to one official cited by Ynet, some 300 terrorist gunmen have been killed since Israeli ground forces were sent into Gaza more than a week ago.
"Some Hamas companies and battalions were simply wiped out," said the officer. "We also see cases of desertions and unauthorized leaves, while some terror activists are scared to undertake moves that would jeopardize them."
He recounted that when Israeli forces cornered Hamas' top rocket commander on Saturday, the terror chief's subordinates all refused to come out of hiding and help him fight back.
Amir Mansi, who commanded Hamas rocket crews across northern Gaza, was forced to fire mortar shells at the advancing Israelis on his own before being taken out.
Israeli forces have been advancing very slowly on major population centers in Gaza, both in an effort to reduce their own casualties and to avoid putting unarmed Palestinian civilians in harm's way.
The first major clash in Gaza City took place on Sunday morning, when Hamas says a company of its fighters ambushed an Israeli force. However, the Israelis apparently got the upper hand rather quickly, as Palestinian sources reported Hamas had lost 10 men in the battle, while there were no Israeli casualties.
Another 40 terrorists were reportedly killed Saturday night and early Sunday morning as Israeli aircraft pounded Hamas targets across the Gaza Strip.