Date: 13/04/2009, 10:42 AM Author: IDF (Zahal) Website
“The fishing boat that was identified this morning by Israel Navy boats was booby-trapped with hundreds of kilograms of explosives,” estimated the IDF (Zahal) Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, speaking about the incident that occurred on Monday morning, April 13, 2009, near the Gazan coast.
In the early morning hours, Israel Navy boats had noticed an unmanned boat near the Gazan coast. When the forces were situated a few hundred meters from the fishing boat, a very large explosion occurred on the boat. No damage was caused to the Israeli naval boat.
“We assume that this was an attempt to attack one of the Israel Navy boats, an attempt that fortunately was not successful, thanks to the soldiers correctly implementing the regulations,” said the Chief of the General Staff at the signing of his organ donation card, and added that this kind of threat is not new, as a similar incident happened several years ago. “We are examining all our arrangements, and we will carry on dealing with threats of this kind also in the future.”
When asked about whether this incident disturbs the relative quiet in the area of the Gaza Strip lately, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi confirmed, and also reminded of the incident about one week ago, in which Golani Brigade soldiers encountered a group of terrorists attempting to plant an explosive. “I think that Hamas has been intimidated, and it is not by chance that there is no direct firing,” he pointed out, but clarified, “We know that hostile terror activities or terror attacks along the security fence, by sea or through the Sinai are still taking place, and therefore we examine and adjust our arrangements all the time.”
The IDF (Zahal) Chief of the General Staff joins thousands of other donors
The Chief of the General Staff made these comments about the prevented terror attack at the signing of his organ donor card of the Adi Foundation for Organ Donation and Transplants. The event, which took place at the Rabin Military Base in Tel Aviv, was also attended by the IDF (Zahal) Medical Corps Surgeon General, Brig. Gen. Dr. Nachman Ash, and relatives of deceased Adi Ben Dror, after whom the foundation was named.
The Chief of the General Staff pointed out that the IDF (Zahal) is joining the organ donation program which helps save lives, in addition to the blood and bone marrow donations regularly made by the IDF (Zahal) thus far. “I think that the value of human life in the Jewish tradition and heritage generally, and in the IDF (Zahal) specifically, is a holy value, and therefore it is important to contribute to these efforts,” explained Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, adding that he was proud that thousands of soldiers volunteer to sign an organ donor card out of the understanding of the importance of the matter, and blessed the Adi foundation for its work.
The Surgeon General of the Medical Corps, Brig. Gen. Dr. Nachman Ash, mentioned that over 10,000 IDF (Zahal) soldiers and commanders signed organ donor cards in the past six months, and that the IDF (Zahal) is intensifying the education on the subject to the different IDF (Zahal) units