Report: Gaza Arabs Told by Shin Bet Not to Discuss Gaza Operation

YERUSHALAYIM -
Israeli security forces fire tear gas at Palestinian protesters during a protest near the Gaza-Israel border, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, on Friday. (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

After the IDF censor last week urged Israelis not to discuss details regarding the recent IDF operation in Gaza that was the trigger for a Hamas attack in which the terror group hit Israel with almost 500 missiles, residents of Gaza reported over the weekend that they, too, received warnings not to delve into the details of the matter. A recorded message warned recipients not to divulge or discuss “classified information of the IDF,” with the speaker identifying himself as a member of the Shin Bet security service. The Shin Bet had no comment on the matter.

A Lebanese report said over the weekend that Hamas was searching for a truck that had been used by the Israeli forces in the operation on November 11. The terror group did not say what it believed the truck had been used for. Meanwhile, a report in the London-based Arabic-language Al-Shawq al-Aswat newspaper Friday said that the IDF unit involved in the operation had been in Gaza for several weeks. Hamas released numerous photos of what it claimed was the group in Gaza, and the report said that those photos were collected from security cameras spread around Gaza over a period of several weeks.

The report added that Hamas believes that the IDF unit was attempting to install surveillance equipment that would assist in uncovering the whereabouts of Israelis being held in Gaza, including IDF soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, as well as civilians Avram Mengistu and Hisham Shabin a-Seid.

Killed in that operation was M., a senior IDF officer, with a second officer injured. Hamas on Thursday released what it claimed were images of the soldiers who had participated in the operation on November 11. Details about the identity of the IDF soldier killed in the operation have been released as well. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that Israel “owes Colonel M., who was killed in the operation, a great debt. The day will come when the story of his bravery can be told. I salute Colonel M., his family, and his comrades in arms.”

The IDF censor on Thursday warned Israelis not to discuss those claims, or other claims by Hamas. “Hamas is attempting to understand the incident that occurred on November 11, and any detail, even if it seems harmless or unimportant, could potentially bring harm to the security of Israel and endanger lives,” the censor’s message said. “Without regard to the accuracy of the information Hamas is releasing, we ask that individuals refrain from circulating photos, personal details that could identify the soldiers involved, or other details that may have been published in the media, social media, conversation groups, and any other communication platform. It’s important to act responsibly,” the message added.