Commander who left soldier in Gaza to be sacked

July 31, 2007 08:43


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The Golani unit commander who 'forgot' one of his fighters inside the Gaza Strip is most likely to be dismissed, IDF sources estimated on Tuesday. According to a preliminary investigation conducted by OC Gaza Division Brig.-Gen. Moshe Tamir, the soldier, from Golani's 51st Battalion, participated in an operation last Thursday near Khan Yunis in which troops killed five Palestinian gunmen and uncovered large arms caches. Following the operation, the force, led by a platoon commander, began to return to Israel. According to the preliminary investigation, when the soldiers counted down to ensure that they were all present, one of the soldiers accidentally called out the missing soldier's number. After the soldiers crossed back into Israel they realized that one their comrades was missing. They began searching for him at their base, but soon discovered he had been left in Gaza. The soldier, who fired tracer bullets into the air and waving a fluorescent stick-light, was located some 700 meters inside Palestinian territory. The soldiers who found him said he was exhausted and scared.

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