Netanyahu warns of a long war
For two days, Israeli troops have fought to expel Palestinian militants from Israeli territory, battling in firefights between homes, ducking under rocket fire and striking Gazan cities from the sky. In what officials described as the worst attack on Israel in decades, militants on Saturday infiltrated more than 20 Israeli towns and army bases. Read our timeline.
As of last night, at least 700 Israelis and 413 Palestinians had been killed, and an Israeli defense official said at least 150 Israelis had been taken hostage. The U.N. humanitarian agency said almost 125,000 Palestinians were displaced in Gaza after Israeli airstrikes targeted houses and apartment complexes, in some cases before notifying residents.
Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, warned of hard days ahead. “We are embarking on a long and difficult war that was forced on us by a murderous Hamas attack,” he said, referring to the militant group that controls the Gaza Strip. Israel’s military has begun its offensive phase, he added, “which will continue with neither limitations nor respite until the objectives are achieved.”
On the ground: Israeli tanks could be seen crossing farmland in parts of southern Israel, heading south toward Gaza, and the military ordered an evacuation of civilians from 24 villages near the Gaza border, a possible prelude to a ground assault.
Quakes strike Afghanistan
More than 800 people have died since two major earthquakes hit northwestern Afghanistan on Saturday. That toll is expected to rise, according to the local authorities, making the dual shocks one of the deadliest natural disasters to hit the country in decades.
Aid workers who arrived yesterday in Herat Province found that in some cases, entire families had been killed. Hospitals and clinics — already on the brink of collapse because of shortfalls in funding — have been overwhelmed with hundreds of injured people.
Context: The earthquakes were the latest natural disaster to devastate Afghanistan, which has endured enormous floods, mudslides and other earthquakes in recent years.
A Ukrainian village mourns
Officials said a Russian strike on the Ukrainian farming village of Hroza on Thursday killed 52 people — one in every six residents — hitting a cafe where a wake was being held, in one of the single deadliest missile strikes of the war. The daunting task of identifying and burying the dead has now begun.
Hroza, about 25 miles from the front lines, is a tiny hamlet of 330 people, and the losses have hit hard. “All my relatives are dead,” one person said.
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ARTS AND IDEAS
A spice blend that makes everything taste better
You find it in Japanese restaurants across the world: red-capped bottles of shichimi togarashi, the seven-spice blend that makes food spicy, savory, nutty and electric all at once.
This combination comes from an exciting interplay of dried red chile, orange peel, sesame seeds, sansho peppercorns, seaweed and often ginger. “Shichi” means seven, and “togarashi” refers to the Japanese red chile that grounds the mix. The other six ingredients might include poppy seeds or yuzu peel: It all depends on the brand and, when made at home, on the cook.
While you might instinctively reach to it for soba or pork chops, really, the only limit is your imagination: Try it sprinkled over chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven, or gently awaken it in a warm pool of olive oil before tossing with noodles.
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