An IDF base a few miles west of Tiberias was robbed Friday morning after masked men entered the base, tied up a soldier, and stole his rifle and several other weapons.Jewish Press News Briefs
Posts Tagged ‘rifle’
Near Shavei Shomron a Palestinian tried to steal a soldier’s gun.
A reserve soldier was driving in his car when a Palestinian, mistaking him for a woman because of his long hair, blocked the road in an attempt to hijack the car. When the soldier got out of his car, the Palestinian then tried to grab his rifle. A scuffle ensued and the Palestinian ran away. The reserve soldier then called the police.Jewish Press News Briefs
Israel is praising the Palestinian Authority for cracking down on crime and corruption in Arab territories in Judea and Samaria, following the arrest of 150 suspects.
The crackdown began in mid-May and has included the arrest of senior security officers, some of whom were trained by the United States.
The suspects, being held in a PA prison in Jericho, were rounded up by the Presidential Guard, a force loyal to PA President Mahmoud Abbas.
Many of the detainees are former members of Fatah’s Al-Aksa martyrs Brigade and the Palestinian National Security Forces, the PA’s US-trained counter-terror wing.
The PA expects to receive a shipment of 4,000 Kalashnikov assault rifles from Jordan, pending Israeli approval.Malkah Fleisher
To all of my friends and relatives who sent me their good wishes upon hearing that I volunteered for a one week tour of the army, I am now sending a little summary of what this was all about.
Sar-EL, the National Project for Volunteers for Israel, stations volunteers on IDF bases across the country. We work in army uniforms and perform non-combat support duties, working alongside regular soldiers, helping Israel shoulder its defensive burdens.
I was introduced to the program through an email from Nefesh B’Nefesh. It’s geared to new olim of all ages to have the opportunity to assist the IDF and give something back to them for all that they do for us. It sounded very exciting to me so after discussing it with Libby (after all, I’ll be away for almost a week) and receiving her support, I immediately signed up for a week, starting Sunday May 6th.
First, I had to send in a completed medical report from my doctor confirming that I was physically and mentally fit to do the necessary work, together with my ID for the army to check out in advance. B’H- no problems there.
Sunday morning, May 6th I headed for Ben Gurion airport where I was to meet the entire group for that week. There were about 100 volunteers gathered. After presenting our papers we were assigned to specific army bases in groups varying between 12-20 in any given group. I, together with 16 others, was assigned to a base in the Negev, somewhere near Be’er Sheva. We were asked not to disclose the exact location or the name of the base. 17 of us, 11 men and 6 women boarded a bus taking us to our base. Also with us was one regular soldier (Sharon), who was to be our Madricha for the entire week. She was 19 years old while we ranged from age 40 to 86. She spoke English (somewhat) and was trained by the army to lead groups of Sar-EL such as ours.
We got to the base around 1pm and after room assignments we went to the dining room for a sumptuous fleishige lunch. After lunch we were ushered to uniform supplies. Without a tape measure the soldier in charge just looked at each of us and said “this is a perfect size for you,” and handed us our army pants, shirt (with TZAHAL insignia) and belt. Believe it or not – mine fit. Others, who were very tall and broad, could not fit into the given shirts- but the army ran out of larger sizes. So they were just given t-shirts.
We were then given 30 minutes to unpack and straighten our beds. The men’s barracks had 3 to a room; the women had 2 to a room.
Lo and behold, to our surprise the rooms were air-conditioned, and the next building which had the bathroom and showers had 4 toilets (3 in working condition) and 3 shower stalls with hot running water. For those volunteers who have done this several times this was a very pleasant surprise – because in previous bases they did not have such luxury.
3;30 – We were marched to work stations- huge warehouses and asked to remove filled duffle bags from the bins, dust the bags and shelves, and restore them in the exact location from where they were removed. We worked for 1 hour.
4:30 – Back to our rooms for shower and relaxation.
6:30 pm – Dinner. Not as fulfilling as lunch, they served (always buffet-style) lots of salads, vegetables, and something that looked like green omelets. Nothing hot to drink but plenty of ice-water on tables.
7:30 pm – Evening activity. Our group met in one large room to get to know each other. Each spoke about himself/herself, and why they enlisted for a week.
It turned out that: we had a husband and wife team, a mother and daughter team, 3 of us came from Israel and all others from chu’l; one from Italy, one from Ireland, 3 from England, and the rest from USA. 3 were not even Jewish, and only 3 of us were Shomrei Shabbat. I was amazed to hear their motives for coming. They had to leave their family, jobs, and pay full flight to get here. They were not wealthy but they put together a year of savings in order to come. Their motive? They loved Israel, and the Jewish people. Most of them had done this before and for one it was the 10th time. It gave me goose-pimples hearing them describe their love and devotion to Israel. It also gave me chizuk and inspiration.
We were informed that this army base is the largest supply base for the entire southern region, including Aza. If war were to break out in Aza the Givati and other infantry units would be sent here to pick up their guns, ammunition and supplies. It is considered a very important base and is therefore protected by the Iron Dome Missile system.Rabbi Aharon Ziegler
We would never presume to second-guess the IDF’s judgment concerning the actions of one of its officers while on duty. But several observations need to be made about the worldwide reaction to that video of IDF Lt. Col. Shalom Eisner’s striking a demonstrator with a rifle butt.
This episode is not just about the reaction of one soldier in a tense situation. It is also about calculated provocations designed to show Israel in the worst possible light, and it is that aspect of the controversy which needs to be addressed.
For one thing, the uproar over the event only underscores that the kind of violence seen on the video was atypical of what has come to be expected from the Israeli military.
For another, the incident occurred next door to the Syrian killing fields, and yet the pro-Palestinian protestors had not a word to say about that, focusing their ire instead on the lone democracy in the region. Why the sympathy for demonstrators who ignore palpable evil but obsess about one side of a long-simmering geopolitical controversy? And would the demonstrators last one minute if they brought their act to any Arab country?
Also, how is it that a reaction to provocation is judged without reference to the provocation? Where is the discussion about the propriety of protesters seeking to force the opening of a blockaded road that is part of a security plan which continues to save Israeli lives? Why is that area not properly considered a war zone with all of the assumed risks that entails?
And does it mean nothing that the object of Lt. Col. Eisner’s anger was a link in a pulsating chain of marchers challenging soldiers whose mission it was to keep them off the security road? What, exactly, were the soldiers supposed to do to stop them? Feed them falafel?
Further, after the Rodney King fiasco twenty years ago, why aren’t more people concerned that the tape may not tell the full story? Shalom Eisner claimed that violence had been visited upon him – and that two of his fingers were broken as a result – just before the videographer/demonstrator started filming. Is that to be dismissed out of hand?
As an Israeli military spokesperson, Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich, said, while that while Lt. Col. Eisner may have breached his ethical duties, he was facing “an illegal riot” and that the video being circulated showed a thirty-second edited snippet of a 120-second tape.
While remaining mindful of the strict standards the IDF imposes on its personnel, we need to never lose sight of the goals and methods of anti-Israel fanatics who will stop at nothing to undermine Israeli security and whose fondest dreams are our worst nightmares.Editorial Board
Mohammed Mera, the 24-year-old Frenchman who claimed ties to Al-Qaida and suspected of shooting the 5 victims of the Ozar Hatorah Jewish school, remains surrounded by police in his Toulouse apartment. According to a report by Euronews, Mera is heavily armed with an Uzi machine gun, a Kalashnikov assault rifle, and other weapons.
Earlier in the standoff, Mera threw a pistol out of his house in exchange for a “communications device”, according to French Interior Minister Claude Gueant.
Summer 1946. His high school days over, my father, Mordechai Schwartz, was faced with a decision that would affect not only his life but the lives of generations to come.
Struggling to make up his mind about whether to enroll in university or join the Palmach, the underground Jewish fighting force, my father spent three full weeks weighing the possible consequences of each course of action.
Created in 1941 to battle the Nazi army stationed in Africa, the Palmach (Palguot Machatz, spearhead of the underground Haganah) had developed into an elite commando force capable of extraordinary feats of daring, military genius and acts of self-sacrifice.
In five short years the Palmach fighter had become the ideal Jewish soldier – brilliant, athletic, able to improvise strategy and tactics on the spot, honest and humble – a fighting machine endowed with Jewish values.
Sixty-six years had passed since my family arrived in Eretz Yisrael. In 1880 Zionism was not yet a political movement. My great-grandmother could not have children and her girlfriends told her that if she lived in the Holy Land she would conceive. So she and her husband left Europe and returned home – home after 1,900 years of exile.
My family – religious yet worldly and very much involved in the issues of the day – was divided between the Palmach and the Irgun, the underground force that had broken with the Haganah. The Palmach stressed a covert approach to dislodging the British from Palestine and defending against Arab attacks; the Irgun emphasized an overt military effort to secure Jewish independence and security. They were bitter enemies at times, but heroes all.
My father had to choose between studying to be an engineer or putting personal ambition on the back burner and fighting for a Jewish state. The Palmach offered hope – a new day for the wandering, persecuted Children of Israel who were scattered to the ends of the earth but who daily reaffirmed the biblical vow, “If I forget thee O Jerusalem, let my right hand lose its power ”
A sense of urgency was sweeping the Jewish world. Fully one-third of the Jewish nation had just been wiped off the face of the earth. My father made his decision. He would give his all to end the misery of his beloved people. He would join the heirs of the Maccabean and Bar Kochba warriors.
The day of his enlistment, my father sprang out of bed singing the words of the Palmach marching song:
All around us the storm rages But we will not lower our heads We are always ready to follow the commands We are the Palmach.
And then he was off to Kibbutz Bet HaArava, in the northern Dead Sea region. Within an hour of enlisting he began rifle training. The Palmach wasted no time.
“Rifles are not like an ear; they must be cleaned every day,” the young rifle instructor told the new volunteers. “Get to know each part of the rifle. The Winchester is designed to be fired from the shoulder.”
He then went into intricate detail concerning the engineering of the weapons they were holding. “By the way,” he said, “if you are wondering why I am explaining all of this to you is because in the Palmach we think – and we want to understand what we do. We don’t argue, but we want to understand.”
Moving from one recruit to the next the young instructor examined the barrels of their rifles, his sharp eye searching for any dust, dirt or sand. He would repeat the same three questions, followed by a command: “Is the gun clean?” “Are you sure?” “Is it empty?” “Fire.”
The click of the hammer sounded again and again. The recruits were becoming increasingly annoyed at the repetition. Everyone got the drill. Suddenly, a rifle fired, but it wasn’t empty. A bullet entered the young instructor’s right eye, killing him instantly. Shocked, wailing with guilt and remorse, the recruit who fired the shot was beside himself as the blood of the instructor flowed onto the ground.
Utterly shaken by the tragedy, my father remembered his mother’s words – “If God wants, even a broom can shoot.” Or even a supposedly empty rifle. And so on that first day of training my father learned his first Palmach lesson: Never take anything for granted.Rabbi Avi Schwartz