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Monday, January 05, 2009

Golani soldier escapes kidnap attempt

On Sunday, Hamas claimed to have kidnapped two IDF soldiers, a story that was vehemently denied by the IDF. On Monday, JPost confirms that Hamas attempted to kidnap a soldier from the IDF's elite Golani unit through a weapons tunnel - but the soldier escaped. Here's his story.
Soldiers from the IDF's Golani infantry brigade were fighting in the northern part of the Gaza Strip when they entered a house on which they had previous intelligence indicating that it was used as a Hamas command center.

Upon entering the house, the soldiers discovered entrances to several tunnels, which the Hamas terrorists holed up in the house had used to escape underground to neighboring houses. According to the report, the terrorists were shooting into the building when the soldiers entered.

One of the soldiers reportedly followed the gunmen into a tunnel and managed to contain several Hamas fighters in an underground firefight, before teaming up with his comrades again. Two IAF helicopters were scrambled to support the infantrymen, Israel Radio said.

The military assessed that the Palestinian terrorists were trying to lure the soldier to go after them alone into the tunnel in an effort to kidnap him.
If the terrorists were already outside the house, I don't understand why the soldier went after them. And I don't know what the report means when it says that he 'contained' them. I don't think this was worth the risk that this soldier apparently undertook.

Arutz Sheva's account makes a little more sense but has much less detail:
The incident was said to have occurred after Golani troops entered a Hamas command center in a house on the eastern outskirts of Gaza City and discovered smuggling tunnels underneath. A clash broke out between the troops and Hamas terrorists, who began to drag away one soldier, according to Israeli and foreign media.

Helicopter cover and efforts by his comrades forced the terrorists to release the solider. The IDF refused to discuss the incident, saying it would not comment on "rumors," but its spokesmen on Sunday denied a Hamas claim to the media that it had kidnapped two soldiers. The denial was issued after Reuters published the report, and the source of the claim may have been the clash that was not reported until Monday morning.
Something tells me that we're not getting the whole story.

Regarding the claimed kidnapping, JPost adds:
In related news, the IDF dismissed Hamas claims that the group had succeeded in kidnapping two soldiers. A statement by the IDF spokesperson said the army does not comment on "rumors and mendacious reports" issued by Hamas, and emphasized that if an incident of Hamas kidnapping a soldier were to occur, the army would break the news to the public in a proper and timely manner.
The IDF is honest. Hamas is not.

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At 12:19 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - are they searching for Gilad Shalit? If its not a priority, it should be.

At 7:34 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


If they are, they're not talking about it. My guess is that Shalit is with the Hamas bigwigs in the bunker under Shifa Hospital.


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