- January - November 13, 2012: Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and smaller terror cells in Gaza launch several hundred rockets into Israel.
- November 14: IDF begins Operation Pillar of Defense, killing Ahmed Jabari, a senior leader in Hamas's military wing, in a pinpoint airstrike on his car. The IDF then launches dozens of airstrikes on Hamas weapons, caches, and command centers. Rocket fire from Gaza intensifies.
- November 15: IDF kills Hab's Hassan Us Msamch, a senior official in the Hamas police force. Israel enforces a lockdown in Israeli communities close to the Gazan border and closes schools near Gaza. Three Israeli civilians are killed by a rocket in Kiryat Malakhi. Two Iranian-designed Fajr rockets land near Tel Aviv; this marks the first-ever use of such a long-range missile by Gazan terrorists.
- November 16: A three-hour ceasefire is declared for the duration of a visit by Hisham Qandil, Prime Minister of Egypt. During the ceasefire, Hamas and other groups fire about 50 rockets into Israel. During Qandil's visit, an errant Hamas rocket kills a Gazan boy. Qandil declares the boy both a martyr and a victim of Israeli aggression.
- November 17: IDF kills Osama Kadi, a senior operative in Hamas's smuggling operations, and Muhammad Kalb, another senior Hamas operative. Fajr-5 rockets target Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Israel mobilizes for a potential ground invasion.
- November 18: IDF kills Ramz Harb, a senior Islamic Jihad propagandist in Gaza City, and Yahyia Byya, head of Hamas's rocket program.
- November 20: An Israeli Bedouin civilian is killed by a rocket from Gaza.
- November 21: An Egyptian-mediated ceasefire goes into effect. Later in the day, a bus bombing in Tel Aviv injures at least 28. Though Hamas denies responsibility, the group praises the attack with an official comment, celebratory gunfire, and an announcement on loudspeakers from a Gazan mosque.
- Israel: 2 IDF soldiers and 4 Israeli civilians killed; 20 soldiers and 219 civilians injured
- Gaza: 100-120 terrorists and several dozen Gazan civilians killed (estimates vary). At least six were killed by stray Hamas and Islamic Jihad rockets. Hamas also publicly executed 8 Gazans accused of collaborating with Israel
- 1,506 fired at Israel, of which 421 were intercepted by Iron Dome. Two killed Israeli civilians, and at least four killed Gazan civilians
inaccurate reporting on the operation
From the beginning, Western media reported poorly on Operation Pillar of Defense. In an article explaining the conflict, published the day after the operation ended, the BBC presented as fact the assertion by Hamas Foreign Minister Ghazi Hamad that "Hamas had a right to defend its people and would respond to Israeli attacks." The article failed to mention Hamas officials' many statements which clearly expressed that their goal is the destruction of Israel. The day after the operation ended, the New York Times reported that Israeli shelling "killed 162 Gazans, including at least 30 militant commanders." The article failed to mention that in addition to at least 30 commanders, dozens more terrorists were killed. This gives the impression that as many as 132 Gazan civilians were killed, when even the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, a group known to inflate civilian casualties, listed only 105 civilian deaths--including at least six from Hamas rockets. Estimates of the death toll in Gaza from other sources range from 149 to 177; how the Times arrived at their number, presented as an undisputed fact, is unclear.
Information on Operation Pillar of Defense
Infographics and charts on the operation
Coverage of Operation Pillar of Defense