In addition to concerns surrounding Gilad Shalit’s mental and physical stability, the intelligence community is hoping the recently released IDF soldier, who was in Hamas captivity for over five years, will be able to furnish new information on Hamas.
Officials will give it some time, permitting Gilad to heal, to return to his home, family and life as he once knew it, but at some point, the questions will begin as the intelligence community hopes to learn more about Hamas.
There is still speculation surrounding the Shalit abduction and if Israel ever really knew his whereabouts. In 2009 former IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi stated “Israel knows where Gilad is being held”, leading to speculation by the media of an imminent military operation to free him, an operation that never occurred. A clarification of the IDF commander’s remarks was released, stating that Israel knew Shalit was in Gaza, but lacked information as to his exact location.
Some believed that the IDF commander made his remarks to compel Hamas to continuously move Shalit from one place to another.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)