Wednesday, May 13, 2015

(Part 1 here)

Shachar Eilenberg, an IDF soldier who fought in Gaza, wrote down some of his experiences on Facebook in response to the "Breaking the Silence" release of anonymous "testimonies."

Operation Protective Edge - Khirbat Ikhza'a
In the early morning hours we identify two kids walking near a house we were staying in. Four combatants quickly accompany Company Commander Benaya Sarel as they go out to "pick" them, and bring them to us so we can interrogate and ask them what are they doing in an area that has been clear of civilians for the last week and a half, an area where fighting is taking place. After a quick interrogation by the Prisoner Interrogator and Benaya Sarel it becomes clear the kids came here looking for food and have no ties to Hamas. Benaya decides to give them some of our food and release them to their homes.

Operation Protective Edge - Khirbat Ikhza'a, the same house as the incident mentioned above.
We're in it for quite a long time and discover that due to a miscalculation of the amount of food we took, our team of 13 combatants is now left with just one Tuna [can]. In the kitchen of the house there's pasta that can feed the whole team. We explain this to the Company Commander and ask for permission to make the pasta. The reply we got was: "You made a mistake, you didn't take enough food, be strong and survive with what you've got. Eating from the the family's food is looting and we're not an army of looters".
And no, we didn't destroy the house after we left it.

Operation Protective Edge - the outskirts of Rafah.
1.8.14, 08:00, the humanitarian cease fire comes into effect.

Minutes after the the cease fire a biker emerges, we try to stop him, but because of the cease fire we can't - he manages to escape. Afterwards we realize the said biker is a Hamas operative sent to check our force's location and pass intelligence to Hamas.

A short while afterwards Benaya Sarel spots an unarmed "civilian" on the second floor of a nearby building. Again, just like in the first incident, Benaya decides to go "pick" the civilian and find out what's he doing in a combat zone, where for some two weeks and a half there are no civilians in sight.

The Command Squad, comprising of six combatants, goes out to bring the civilian to us for interrogation. When they reach the said civilian a strong explosion is heard and heavy fire is opened up on them. All this of course during the "humanitarian cease fire". From this incident Major Benaya Sarel, Lieutenant Hadar Goldin and First Sergeant Liel Gidoni did not return. Again, I emphasize, this was during a cease fire.

Who ever says our army is immoral and criminal is blind, and if the soldiers of such an army are criminals I'm a proud criminal.
(h/t K., Yoel)

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