IDF soldier carries bloodstained WWII prayer shawl into battle in Gaza

Matan Peleg, chairman of the Zionist group Im Tirtzu, carries his great-grandfather’s bloodstained prayer shawl, taken from battle against the Nazis, into Gaza.

By World Israel News Staff

An IDF soldier deployed to the Gaza Strip brought a bloodstained World War II-era Jewish prayer shawl with him into battle to mark Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Matan Peleg, chairman of the Zionist activist group Im Tirtzu, displayed the bloodied tallit, or Jewish prayer shawl, which he received from his great-grandfather, in a video on social media Tuesday.

Peleg, 43, said his great-grandfather recovered the prayer shawl from a fallen comrade while fighting Nazi soldiers during the war.

After fleeing Poland during the German invasion of 1939, Peleg’s great-grandfather enlisted in the Soviet army, Peleg explained.

During a battle against German forces, Peleg’s great-grandfather found a slain Jewish soldier in a tank wearing the prayer shawl.

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Peleg’s great-grandfather “fled Poland and joined the Russian army, which checked the destroyed tank and found the dead tank driver with a tallit on him,” he explained in the video.

“He took it and this is the first time I am taking it out of the house.”

“We’re coming full circle,” Peleg added. “From a tank driver, a Jewish soldier serving in the Russian army fighting against the Nazis, may their names rot – now to us, Jewish soldiers in a Jewish army.”

“We are serving in the armored corps in the Jewish army of the State of Israel. Thank you very much for what we are doing both for the future generations and the previous generations who are watching us.”