Baumel says son is being held in Syria

Father of soldier missing since 1982 says gov't has "hierarchy of MIAs" policy - pilots more important.

October 17, 2007 10:29
1 minute read.
Baumel says son is being held in Syria

baumel picture 298. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Yona Baumel, the father of Zacharia Baumel - one of three IDF soldiers who went missing during the Battle of Sultan Yakoub in 1982 - accused the government on Wednesday of practicing a policy of "a hierarchy of MIAs" and investing huge sums of taxpayer money on the search for missing IAF navigator Ron Arad while ignoring the other missing soldiers. Baumel told Army Radio, "We have resigned ourselves to this, because [for the government] those who crawl on the ground are less important than pilots." The army said in response that there was no differentiation made between missing soldiers and cited the fact that family members of all the MIAs met last month with Chief of General Staff Lt.- Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi. Baumel also expressed anger that the Arad family was not required to spend its own money in searching for information. "We are working alone and spending our own money," he said, "and when we need even the smallest cooperation from the government we don't get it." He went on to say that he has proof that his son was being held captive in Syria, and was alive as recently as two years ago. According to Baumel, his family operates a network of informants, and that information they have received indicates that Zacharia is in Syria. "As of two years ago it became known to us that he was alive, but in bad condition. I know my son is in Syria, dead or alive. We have a lot of information. "We have a network that works for us for free, dear people all over the world; friends of Zacharia that work in the United States on his behalf. He was alive in Syria," repeated Baumel, "the information came from Arab sources.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town