IDF to release flotilla findings

Eiland to present Ashkenazi with probe's publication.

eiland 248.88   (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski )
eiland 248.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski )
The IDF was in suspense on Sunday ahead of the planned publication of the internal military probe into the operation that stopped the Turkish flotilla to the Gaza Strip in late May and ended with nine dead passengers.
The report was supposed to be submitted to IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi on Sunday evening by head of the investigative panel Maj.-Gen. (res.) Giora Eiland.
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On Monday morning, Eiland was scheduled to present the findings to the members of the General Staff to whom the report pertains, including commander of the Navy V.-Adm. Eliezer Marom, head of IDF Operations Maj.-Gen. Tal Russo and OC Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Amos Yadlin.
On Monday afternoon the IDF is expected to release the findings to the public.
The report is not expected to contain personal recommendations against any of the officers involved in Operation Sea Breeze 7 – the boarding of the Mavi Marmara Turkish passenger ship on May 31 by Navy commandos from Flotilla 13.
During ensuing clashes, nine passengers, all Turkish nationals were killed and around 10 commandos were injured.
The report is, however, expected to be extremely critical of the decision-making process which led up to the operation and the way it was carried out.
Eiland and the other members of the probe have focused the investigation on the relationship between the military and political echelons as well as the apparent intelligence failure, under which the navy commandos boarded the ship without knowing that a group of passengers, apparently mercenaries, had laid an ambush, according to the IDF.
In a lecture he gave in Tel Aviv last month, Eiland was critical of the operation, saying it could be that, due to a lack of appropriate planning for the flotilla, Israel was left with no choice but to board the ships.
“Had they prepared months in advance, the room to maneuver would have been greater,” he said at the time.