Golani brigade irate over removal of three soldiers from combat duty

Golani soldiers are upset about the dismissal of three soldiers from combat.

By World Israel News Staff

Soldiers from the Israel Defense Forces’ elite Golani Brigade expressed outrage over the dismissal of a sergeant and two other soldiers from combat duties for failing to engage with the enemy during an incursion by a terrorist combatant last month, Israel media report.

The three soldiers were dismissed from combat for failing to engage with the enemy during an incident on August 1, when a terrorist crossed the Gaza-Israel border in order to carry out an attack.

The terrorist was killed by another group of Golani soldiers. The terrorist succeeded in wounding three soldiers, including an officer.

According to Ynet, Golani soldiers said they were insulted by the dismissal of their comrades and that it reflected poorly on the entire brigade. “We get a name as cowards who are afraid to fight,” they say, the paper reports.

Golani’s brigade commander, Brig. General Shai Klapper, decided to remove the three soldiers from combat following an investigation into the episode.

The investigation found that the soldiers had hurried to engage with the terrorist but that their driver, who was not a combat soldier, upon hearing weapons fire, turned the vehicle around to beat a hasty retreat. Despite urging him to stop and unload them, the driver continued away from the fight.

Although the Golani soldiers had wanted to fight, IDF investigators concluded they hadn’t done enough and should have forcibly stopped the driver.

The IDF Spokesman’s Office said, “The debriefing showed proper operational action outside of a gap in the conduct of one of the forces. The investigation reveals that the platoon commander and the patrol fighters who were with him, as well as the deputy commander who arrived at the event, rushed to make contact.

“The investigation also revealed that another force commanded by a sergeant was prevented from entering the combat space.

“After the investigation, Golani Brig. General Shai Klapper decided to dismiss from combat the sergeant and two fighters, (of the other force) who did not act as expected in an operational incident. In addition, Southern Brigade Commander, Brig. General Liron Batito, decided to remove the patrol driver from his position.”

Golani soldiers said the decision was unfair.

Ynet says they are telling their families and friends: “We work hard here 24/7. We’re holding a complicated sector with successful missions that aren’t publicized at all, and end up being slapped by the IDF.

“The dismissed fighters are in shock and say, ‘What? For this, I’ve sacrificed and given more than two years in service as an infantry fighter?’ It is insulting and offensive that they issue a public message this way against fighters who give their all… There is a uneasy sense of shame. Instead of the senior officers in the unit backing the fighters, they embarrass us.”