BDE: Father Of Murdered IDF Soldier Nachshon Wachsman Is Niftar


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Yehudah Wachsman, who lost his son Nachshon Wachsman 26 years ago after he was kidnapped by Hamas terrorists and brutally murdered during a badly botched rescue attempt by the IDF, passed away on Thursday at the age of 73.

Wachsman has been suffering from ill-health in recent years and underwent a kidney transplant, a friend told Channel 12 News. “Yehudah was a very special person who suffered a serious tragedy but nevertheless remained a positive person,” his friend said. “The achdus of Am Yisrael was important to him. He never stopped talking about it.”

At Nachshon’s levaya, his Rosh Yeshivah, Rav Mordechai Elon, delivered a hesped during which – at the request of Yehudah – he said that Hashem listens to all our tefillos and just like a father must sometimes say no his children’s requests although they can’t understand why “so too our Father in Shamayim heard our tefillos and although we don’t understand why, His answer was no.”

Yehudah also suffered from heart disease and has been suffering greatly in recent years. “Baruch Hashem our father was redeemed from his yissurim,” his family wrote in a statement to the public. “The staff at Hadassah Hospital did everything they could to relieve his pain, true chessed shel emess, and in their zechus he passed away painlessly – the most important thing for him and for us. We thank the medical and nursing staff for their devotion and avodas hakodesh. Yehudah left behind his wife Esther, six sons, and many grandchildren. Yehi Zichro Baruch.

On October 9, 1994, Nachshon, a Golani soldier, a dual US-Israeli citizen and the 3rd of seven sons, left his army base in the north to return to his parents’ home in the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem and disappeared.

He was last seen by a friend who said that Wachsman was dropped off at a well-known hitchhiking station in central Israel. Israeli intelligence discovered that he had entered a car with Hamas terrorists dressed as frum Jews with Chassidic music playing. They even had placed a siddur and Tanach on the dashboard of the car.

Nachshon Wachsman, h’yd

Two days later, the terrorists released a video of Wachsman with his hands and feet bound saying that he had been kidnapped by Hamas and if their demands are not met by Friday (three days later) they would execute him.

The IDF captured the driver of the car which had picked up Wachsman and discovered that he was being held in the village of Bir Nabala, only ten minutes away from Wachman’s home. Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin authorized an IDF rescue attempt.

Yehudah Wachsman, z’l

Elite IDF commandos from the Sayeret Matkal special forces unit carried out the rescue operation the night of the terrorist’s ultimatum.

Unfortunately, the operation failed. Wachsman was being held behind a solid steel door, and the difficulty in blasting it open gave the terrorists ample warning of what was happening, allowing them to kill Wachsman.

The first door led to a second iron door which also needed to be blasted open, while meanwhile heavy exchanges of gunfire were taking place between the terrorists and the IDF commandos.

By the time the soldiers reached the room where Wachsman was, he was already dead. Captain Nir Poraz, one of the commanders of the operation, was killed during the operation and nine IDF commandos were wounded.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. At the time, the night of the ultimatum, it was massive news and uniting news – it had all sectors of Klal Yisroel out in the streets davening for Nachshon Wachsman. When the sad news broke that he had been killed during the rescue (which was not “botched”, just way way harder than they had anticipated), I remember a chiloni news journalist later interviewing his father, Yehudah zt”l. While the news was still so raw, he interviewed him with the gall and chutzpah as only a chiloni Jew can do, and asked R’ Yehudah zt”l something along the lines of “So, nu, what good were all those tefillas afterall?!”. To which R’ Yehuda zt”l, fresh from the pain of the long and sickening ordeal responded something like “Didn’t you just hear about the rescue effort – two layers of iron doors, tiny tunnels protected by tons of heavily armed blood-thirsty terrorists – and B”H almost all of those IDF commandos made it out B”H so well. Each one of those tefillas were 100% answered, and each one worked to save at least one of our sons, and continue to save them. Just not my son. Perhaps if YOU had also joined those tefillos…”