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October 25, 2016 / 23 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘tank’

Experts: Putin Sent Israel the Wrong Missing Tank

Friday, June 17th, 2016

Last week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accepted in a heartfelt ceremony from Russian President Vladimir Putin a Magach-3 Israeli tank that had been captured by the Syrians in the 1982 Battle of Sultan Yacoub in the First Lebanon War, and had been on display in a museum in the Moscow area. Netanyahu posted in his Facebook page: “My wife Sara and I have participated today in an emotional ceremony of returning the tank that had fallen in Syrian captivity during the Battle of Sultan Yacoub in the First Lebanon War.” But now, according to Yedioth Aharonoth, one week after Israel received the tank in which the still missing in action Israeli fighters had met their demise, it appears, to the chagrin of the mourning families, that it may not be the same tank.

On June 10, 1982, IDF 90th Armored Division was rushed forward with orders to gain as much ground as possible before a cease-fire would come into effect. Late that night the force fought its way through Syrian infantry in the Lebanese village of Sultan Yacoub, in the eastern Beqaa Valley, only four miles from the Syrian border. Apparently, in its rush to gain ground, coupled with intelligence failures, the force was cut off and surrounded by Syrian army units. At dawn, the force broke out and escaped to the south, supported by Israeli artillery. The battle lasted six hours resulting in the force losing eight tanks and 30 men. The force was unable to destroy the disabled Magach-3 tanks they left behind and those were recovered by the Syrians, and were put on display in Russia and in the Tishreen Panorama Military Museum in Damascus. Three IDF soldiers remain missing in action: Zachary Baumel, an Israeli-US citizen, Yehuda Katz and Zvi Feldman. These soldiers were captured and paraded through Damascus on top of their captured tank.

Returned tank lands in Israel / Courtesy

Returned tank lands in Israel / Courtesy

In his Facebook post, Netanyahu noted that the returned tank is “the only testimony to our missing soldiers from that battle… For 34 years we’ve been searching for our fighters and will not cease the search until we inter them in a Jewish cemetery in the State of Israel. For these 34 years the Baumel, Katz and Feldman families have not had a gravesite to visit. Now they’ll have this tank, a remnant from the Sultan Yacoub battle which they can visit and touch and remember their sons in Israel.”

Not really, says tank expert Lt. Col. (Ret) Michael Mas, who told Yedioth the returned tank is not the one inside which the three missing soldiers were fighting. “It’s very sad that the prime minister and the media follow misinformation,” Mas said. “This is not the tank that belonged to the missing. What was returned is a whole tank, and the tanks where the missing fought look different. While this is for sure one of the eight tanks captured by the Syrians in the battle, this tank bears no mark of any injuries. When Netanyahu said that the families who haven’t had a gravesite to visit will now find peace, he committed two errors: one, it’s not their tank; and two, they’re missing, not dead.”

Returned tank in Israel / Courtesy

Returned tank in Israel / Courtesy

Pirchia Heiman, Yehuda Katz’s sister, responded angrily, telling Yedioth: “All the families of the missing are enraged. What do we need all these spins for?” She asked, adding, “Since I’ve heard of the plan to return the tank I waited eagerly, I couldn’t sleep at night. Ten days ago they conducted the ceremony in Russia and there Ndetanyahu said the families would have this tank ‘to be able to touch it and the memory of their sons,” and he already knew it was the wrong tank, but we didn’t. Only the next day did we get the right shield number for the tank, not through the IDF, and I realized this wasn’t Yehuda’s tank.”

At this point it should be noted that PM Netanyahu could have avoided this embarrassment had he read up IDF reports filed 18 years ago, which determined after a thorough examination of the tank on display in Russia that it’s not the tank that belonged to the missing soldiers, and that the soldiers who fought in this tank were able to flee the scene unharmed and are alive and well.

Here’s another embarrassing point Netanyahu could have saved himself had he read the IDF reports: the three missing soldiers fought in two different tanks, one of which was burnt beyond recognition, and neither of which is the returned tank. Like cars, tanks receive identifying numbers, and this tank, 817581, is not the one.

Or, as Lt. Col. (res) Danny Krief put it, “Clearly, the Russians didn’t care which tank they handed over, and that’s what Netanyahu used for his gimmick.”


Russia to Return Israeli Tank Captured 34 Years Ago in the Battle of Sultan Yacoub

Sunday, May 29th, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

Jerusalem (TPS) – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his gratitude to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday for signing a presidential decree ordering the return to Israel of an IDF tank that was captured 34 years ago during a ferocious battle in the First Lebanon War.

“I thank the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin, that he responded to my request to return the tank from the Battle of Sultan Yacoub to Israel,” Netanyahu said.

The tank, used by the IDF during the Battle of Sultan Yacoub during the First Lebanon War on June 10, 1982, was captured by the Syrian army and eventually transported to the Soviet Union, then a Cold-War ally with Syria. The tank has since remained in Moscow, stored in a museum of armored tanks.

MK Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan, the former deputy defense minister, was an officer in artillery unit 7054 that helped rescue a battalion of Israeli tanks trapped by a Syrian ambush in Sultan Yacoub, Lebanon.

“We fired the whole night, and in the morning the battalion was rescued – except for that one tank and the three missing soldiers, whose fate is still unknown today,” Ben-Dahan recalled to Tazpit Press Service (TPS), referring to the continued mystery behind three IDF soldiers, Zachary Baumel, Zvi Feldman, and Yehuda Katz, who went missing in action during the Battle of Sultan Yacoub. During the entire battle, 30 Israeli soldiers were killed and eight tanks were lost.

“Hearing about the return of the tank sends me back 34 years,” Ben-Dahan told TPS. “It gave me chills.”

Ben-Dahan also expressed hope that the tank’s return might bring news about the fate of the missing soldiers, though he said he cannot comment on any discussions or progress toward that goal.

Netanyahu raised the issue of returning the tank with Putin last month, after having received a request from IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot.

“For the families of the soldiers missing in action, Zachary Baumel, Zvi Feldman, and Yehuda Katz, there is no trace of the boys nor a burial plot to go to for 34 years now,” noted Netanyahu. “The tank is the only evidence of the battle, and now it will be returned to Israel thanks to President Putin’s response to my request.”

A delegation from the IDF’s Ordnance Corps is in Moscow working with representatives from the Russian army to transport the tank back to Israel as soon as possible.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Israeli Upgrade to Turkish Tank Protects Soldiers from ISIS Anti-Tank Missile

Sunday, April 24th, 2016

An Israeli upgrade on a U.S.-made M60T tank used by Turkish military forces in Mosul helped save those soldiers from death in a missile attack by Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists last week (April 19).

The attack, seen in a video released April 19 by the terror group, involved a Russian-made 129K9 Kornet ATGM (anti-tank guided missile) fired at a Turkish tank that was on a hilltop.

The missile struck the tank but it did not explode, nor did it burn. The upgrades made to the tank by Israel were sold to Turkey a decade ago.

None of the crew were injured and the tank sustained only minimal damage, according to a Turkish military official quoted by the Andalou Agency.

The tank was deployed by Turkey to Bashiqah, 30 kilometers northeast of Mosul in northern Iraq. The Turkish military source said Da’esh attacked the tank at Bashiqah, incurring minor damage but no casualties.

The source added the Turkish forces immediately returned fire and killed 32 Da’esh fighters.

The Iraqi government was apparently unaware of the presence of Turkish forces in the country until December 2015, according to a report on Thursday (April 21) by Jane’s defense magazine. The government allegedly demanded at that time that Ankara withdraw all of its troops from Iraq, but Turkey ignored the directive. Ankara insisted the base in Bashiqah was established for the purpose of training a militia to expel Da’esh from Mosul.

Hana Levi Julian

Inside the Merkava IV Tank

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Video of the Day

Report: IDF Tanks and Bulldozers Enter Gaza

Friday, September 19th, 2014

Israel’s Reshet Bet, quoting Maan News, reports that IDF tanks and bulldozers went 150 meters into Gaza on Friday, opposite Khan Younis.

The convoy reportedly went in and razed an area of land.

This past week, a number of rocket alerts went off, indicating rocket launches from Gaza. It is not clear if any rockets managed to cross the Gaza border into Israel.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Israeli Wounded from Syrian Shelling on Golan

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

Fire from Syria landed again in Israel this evening, this time wounding an Israeli civilian inside a Golan Heights community.

The injured man is a 52 year old Kosher supervisor at a wine factory on the Golan. He was lightly injured by the strike.

The man was evacuated to a hospital.

It was initially believed that the strike was from a mortar, but now there is serious suspicion that it came from a Syrian tank, which would mean the attack was deliberate.

There are unconfirmed reports that 3 additional mortars landed in open areas, also near a Golan Height community.

Assad and Rebel forces are fighting near Quneitra, and the IDF said the rocket fire this morning was spillover.

Analysts are questioning if it really was spillover, or instead deliberate.

Hezbollah is currently fighting in Syria, together with Assad’s forces.

Jewish Press News Briefs

As Hamas Threatens Families and Journalists, Who Blew Out the Lights in Gaza?

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

The lights are out again in Gaza, and as usual the Palestinian Authority is blaming Israel. But making spurious claims is not stopping families from starting to get the point: it’s time to think about staying alive. And journalists are beginning to document what’s really happening in Gaza.

But because of the fog of battle, it is not yet clear whose missile, mortar, rocket or grenade hit the fuel storage tank that knocked out the lights.

There is no confirmation from the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit that Israel is to blame for the incident; a spokesperson is “checking the report.”

According to Gaza power company spokesperson Jamal Dardasawi, one of three fuel storage tanks in the plant compound was hit by the shelling — and of course it must have been a shell from an IDF tank. Two, in fact.

Maybe it was. Right now it’s impossible to know anything.

But Gaza’s power plant has been working at reduced capacity for months due to a vastly inadequate supply of fuel and the fact that the plant was already hit last week. To this point, it has been working at about 20 percent capacity, providing about four hours a day of electricity to the region’s residents.

For years, Hamas refused to pay for the fuel it needs to power the plant. It preferred to insist that it had the right to receive the supply either free, or at nearly free prices. If not from Israel, then from Egypt. If not from Egypt, then from anyone else. Egypt finally closed the spigot.

It’s not a lack of money that is the problem either – Hamas is perfectly willing to invest millions in weaponry, and construction of terrorist tunnels with which to attack Israel. That much has become abundantly clear from the photographs taken by IDF soldiers prior to destruction of the tunnels they have conquered.

The intricate network of bunkers and underground infrastructure that exists in the multi-layered subterranean city the IDF has only now just begun to uncover literally stretches from one end of Gaza to the other – a matter of miles, and billions of dollars of investment.

Meanwhile, Iron Dome anti-missile system operators were kept busy Tuesday morning while IDF warriors battled tunnel terrorists in the Gaza City neighborhood of Sejaiyya.

Telephone operators at IDF headquarters warned Gaza residents in eastern Khan Younis at midday Tuesday to evacuate their homes immediately — for their own safety — and move to the central part of the city in advance of an IDF attack in the area. Flyers were also dropped over the city and SMS text messages were transmitted to cell phones to ensure that residents got the message.

There have been numerous reports of Hamas terrorists trying to prevent those residents who actually want to leave from quitting their homes and the combat zones, in order to keep them as human shields. One journalist who was seen photographing such events was threatened by the terrorists, and his equipment confiscated. All three incidents are outright war crimes, of course.

Gaza terrorists still were somehow managing to fire rocket attacks at Israeli civilians from concealed launchers among their own population in the region. Israelis in the coastal city spent hours in their bomb shelters as repeated missile attacks were sent whizzing towards their homes. At least two of the missiles were intercepted by the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system. Two others exploded in the Ashkelon coastal region, in open areas.

Residents of the dozens of communities along the Gaza border have spent hours and days in their bomb shelters, and Tuesday was no exception. Shelling and Qassam rocket attacks by midday were flying thick and fast, at one point landing every few minutes. Unperturbed, residents discussed the attacks with Israeli radio interviewers, noting they’d been through it all before. They said they were willing to wait it would for as long as it would take, just as long as the IDF would deal with it “once and for all this time.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/as-hamas-threatens-families-and-journalists-who-blew-out-the-lights-in-gaza/2014/07/29/

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