The IDF has launched a probe into the special ops mission in Gaza during which the undercover team was discovered, leading to a shootout and a daring rescue mission by the IAF, extricating the troops with choppers while under fire. Lt.-Colonel ‘M’ fell in the line of duty during the operation and a second officer was seriously wounded. Due to the nature of their mission and the unit’s high level of secrecy, their identities cannot be revealed, even following their death.
Hamas used the failed mission to launch its latest rocket barrage against cities and town in Southern Israel, firing about 500 mortar shells and rockets in a 24-hour period. Israel decided to accept the Hamas-declared ceasefire.
According to Israeli TV news reports, the vehicle used by the undercover unit was detected, leading to a chase and a shootout, during which ‘M’ was killed. The nature of their mission remains confidential as well, but officials have stated that the event with the painful realization of how it ended, the timing of the mission was critical, and all possible scenarios were taken under consideration.
This led to the call for assistance and the air force began pounding terrorists to provide cover for the undercover team as the elite 669 airborne rescue team went to work, getting the team out of Gaza via helicopters.
The probe is expected to be completed in a number of weeks and the findings will be submitted to the head of military intelligence as well as the Chief of Staff.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)