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September 17, 2014 / 22 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘IDF’

Girls of the IDF’s “Amazon” Unit

Friday, September 5th, 2014

Soldiers from the Caracal Battalion prepared and participated in a 16 kilometer overnight hike to complete their training course on September 3, 2014.

The Caracal Battalion is an infantry combat battalion of the Israel Defense Forces, composed of mostly female soldiers (and a few men). They are stationed along the Egyptian border.

If Wonder Woman served in the IDF, it would be here (maybe she did).

Girls IDF Caracal

Girls IDF Caracal 3

IDF Girls Caracal 4

In the Navy

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

PM Netanyahu pins the bars on a a new IDF Navy officer on Sept. 2, 2014.

Congratulations.

A Poisonous Atmosphere

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Yesterday, one of my Charedi critics that lives in Israel accused me of ‘rank anti-Charedi hypocrisy’. That’s because I have been critical of how the Meisels seminary issue was being handled by a Beis Din in Israel and because I disagreed with the 5 American rabbinic leaders who came out in support of that Beis Din. I found it odd that I was so viciously attacked as blatantly anti Charedi and a hypocrite – since I was not siding with anti Charedi forces but with Charedi ones who had a different view.

I don’t know what it is. But the classic sentiment in the Gemarah that Avirah D’Ara Machkim (the very air in Israel makes one wise) seems to no longer be true. It is almost as if the reverse is true. I say this with a heavy heart because I know many American Charedim who live there. They are all lovely people. But their Hashkafos seems to have dramatically changed – and along with that, their tactics.

Dr. Moshe Shoshan who resides in Bet Shemesh emphasizes this for me in his guest post on Cross Currents. It is a heartfelt complaint about the lack of an appropriate response by Charedi leaders to the literal terror tactics by some of the more extreme and radical Charedi elements among their people. Among them were terror tactics aimed at Charedim that joined the IDF. There have been more than a few Charedi personalities in America that justifiably were outraged by this and said so. But in Israel, it is an entirely different story. From Cross Currents:

At the end of last month, an IDF officer in uniform, on leave from combat in Gaza, entered a shul in Ramat Beit Shemesh with his two young sons, to daven maariv. They were almost immediately expelled by a group of kizonim (radical charedim) who proceeded to surround them outside the shul preventing them from entering their car and then smashing its windshield.

Fortunately someone hearing the noise thought it was a terrorist attack and called the police, who soon arrived to rescue the soldier and his children. A few weeks before, a solider was attacked in broad daylight by a mob on a main street in Ramat Beit Shemesh. There were many bystanders but only a religious Zionist women who happened to be in the neighborhood came to the soldier’s defense.

That this happens in is and of itself a terrible commentary on the communal mindset of the Charedi world in Israel. But the lack of outrage by this community is the most troubling of all. As Dr. Shoshan notes:

To the best of my knowledge, until this most recent incident not a single leading Ashkenazi charedi Rabbi or spokesman has stood up to condemn this treasonous behavior. Indeed, while covering an earlier incident in Benei Brak, the respected Israeli journalist Razi Barkai reported on his radio show that his staff had contacted all of the many charedi public figures who appear frequently on his show to articulate the positions of the charedi community and their Gedolim.

But, with the exception of Aryeh Deri, they all refused to comment on the attack against the soldier. Following this most recent attack, Yaakov Litzman, a senior Knesset member from the Yahdut ha-Torah party, at long last issued a perfunctory condemnation of the attack to a local non-charedi newspaper.

More from Cross Currents:

Last year, Chaim Walder, perhaps the most beloved religious children’s author in Israel, wrote an editorial the Hebrew Yated Ne’eman, the official organ of R. Steinman’s faction of the Yahadut ha-Torah political party. Walder’s column unequivocally and unapologetically compared Yair Lapid to Adolph Hitler yemach shemo ve-zichro… (But) no public condemnation or criticism was forthcoming.

Nuclear-Capable Sub on the Way for IDF Navy [video]

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Israel’s first German-made Dolphin II nuclear-capable submarine is on its way to Israel, Israeli Navy Commander Vice Admiral Ram Rothberg said at a naval ceremony in Haifa Tuesday night.

The German weekly “Der Spiegel” reported that the submarines have a nuclear capability and will help Israel defend against an Iranian nuclear threat.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has denied that the submarines have a nuclear capability but sources have noted that all indications from Germany’s Defense Ministry are that the submarines can carry nuclear weapons.

Dubbed INS Tanin, the Hebrew word for “crocodile,” the sub “can dive deeper and further and for longer and work more powerfully than anything we have previously known,” the naval commander said.

In five years, the scheduled arrival of two more nuclear submarines from Germany will bring to six the number of subs in the fleet.

The boat on its way to Israel can remain under water for extensive maneuvers for weeks without surfacing, far longer than the submarines now in the fleet.

The Tanin officially was launched by Israel two years ago, as seen below, but it remained there for trial runs and the finishing touches before sailing to Israel this week.

IDF Takes You On a Guided Tour of Terror Tunnel

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Hamas terror tunnels, destroyed by the IDF war against Hamas terror, have become more popular than the Western Wall tunnel, where thousands of tourists walk daily.

Lt. Libby Weiss from the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit gives an exclusive look into the tunnel that ended near Kibbutz Ein HaShlosha. The discovery of the tunnel foiled what would have been a mass slaughter of Jews on the kibbutz at the hands of Hamas murderers. But how could the IDF spokeswoman have led a virtual tour of the tunnel if the IDF destroyed all of them? An IDF spokesman explained to The Jewish Press that the military left the Israeli side of the tunnel in tact so that it could be used for military training as well as for the media to see how Hamas used the humanitarian aid.

Perhaps the kibbutz or the IDF could encourage tourism in the south by opening the tunnel for public tours. An “Israel tunnel tour” could take people to the terror tunnel to understand the demented brain of Hamas and then could take them to Jerusalem to walk through the Western Wall tunnel and experience the site where Herod expanded the Second Temple.

Jihadist Threat Rising on Israel’s Northern Border

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

Events on the other side of Israel’s northern border are heating up, and the government is watching closely. The IDF is beefing up its force along the border to ensure that citizens in the region are protected.

The Al Qaeda-linked Jabhat al Nusra (Al Nusra Front) terrorist faction issued three demands early Tuesday (Sept. 2) for the return of 44 Fiji UN peacekeepers abducted by the group last Wednesday. The group is demanding to be removed from the UN terrorist list, it wants humanitarian aid delivered to parts of Damascus, and money — financial compensation for three of its fighters that it claims were killed in a shootout with UN peacekeepers. (In other words, shot by the UN peacekeepers in self-defense when the terrorists attacked the UN Disengagement Observer Force. It’s a known fact this force never fires first.)

Al Nusra is also engaged in a fierce struggle with Syria government forces fighting to retake control over the strategic town of Quneitra, where the sole crossing into Israel lies. The terror group has already seized control of the crossing; heavy battles before and since have sent mortar shells and other artillery flying into Israel’s side of the Golan Heights.

Last week Kiryat Shmona and several other communities were forced into high alert due to the situation. In three separate attacks, at least two people were wounded, including a soldier and a kosher supervisor, and two vehicles were damaged. IDF troops returned fire to the Syrian side of the border, aiming at the source of the attacks.

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned visiting U.S. Congress members on Monday that the United Nations would be far better served to focus its energies on dealing with the growing jihadist threat, rather than repeatedly investigating Israel’s efforts to counter terror attacks against its civilians. (A new UN Human Rights Commission probe committee a la Goldstone, headed by anti-Israel Canadian law professor William Schabas, is expected to begin shortly.)

“We’re closely following the events on the Golan Heights where al Nusra terrorists have kidnapped UN peacekeepers,” Netanyahu told U.S. Representatives Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY) and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) on Monday. “What we see is that al Nusra, Hamas, Hezbollah – backed by Iran, Al Qaeda and these other terrorist groups are basically defying all international norms, breaking them whether in Lebanon, in Syria or in Gaza. I think the UN would do itself a great favor if, instead of the automatic Israel bashing, they actually turn their attention and their investigative committees against these terrorists who trample every norm on which the UN was founded.”

Rohrbacher concurred, saying that Israel was the sole force for a “long-term peace for this region.” He added that the rest of the Middle East is “awash in tyranny and injustice and gangsterism and terrorism that’s coming from the top, from these people that are running the various organizations, radical Islamic organizations.”

But while Israel and at least most U.S. lawmakers agree on the jihadi threat to the region – and much of the Western world – France and Saudi Arabia seem to be in the process of exacerbating the problem.

The two are close to signing a $3 billion arms deal that would provide new military equipment and weapons to the Lebanese army. This, while the White House has thrown every possible obstacle in the path of normal processing for military-to-military supplies from the U.S. to Israel.

If the Lebanese army were entirely independent boosting its supplies would be a great idea, especially given the current jihadi threat on its border with Syria. But unfortunately a third of Lebanon’s governing cabinet is comprised of ministers from the Hezbollah terrorist organization, which has gone to fight with the army of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Ditto for the parliament, which also is packed with Hezbollah lawmakers. How unlikely is it, therefore, that at least some – if not most – of these weapons will end up in terrorist hands?

Last Soldier Killed in Protective Edge Laid to Rest

Monday, September 1st, 2014

The body of 1st Sgt. Shachar Shalev was laid to rest this afternoon in the cemetery in Hipsin. Shalev succumbed yesterday to wounds he sustained on July 23 in Operation Protective Edge, when a roadside bomb detonated in Khan Yunis, killing his commander and two fellow soldiers. He was 20 years old.

Shalev was a sergeant in the Paratroopers’ Brigade, and was promoted upon his burial. He was a resident of Alonei Bashan in the Golan Heights, and is survived by his mother Naomi, his father Shimon and his five siblings.

Last week, Tazpit News Agency reported about the overwhelming public turnout to donate blood platelets for Shalev, who required a daily platelet transfusion daily. He is the latest casualty from this summer’s Gaza war, which has taken 72 lives in Israel, 66 of them IDF soldiers.

Last Friday Sgt. Netanel Maman died of wounds he sustained on August 22 from shrapnel from a rocket that exploded next to Gan Yavneh in the Ashdod region. Maman was on leave from Operation Protective Edge at the time, and was riding in a car driven by his brother when the shrapnel hit the car and critically injured him. He was laid to rest the same Friday at Gan Yavneh cemetery.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/last-soldier-killed-in-protective-edge-laid-to-rest/2014/09/01/

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