Published On: Thu, Jun 23rd, 2016

Israeli Navy drills against Hamas frogmen

Over the past week, the Israeli Navy has been training to prevent the infiltration of Hamas commandos into Israel; This happened during Operation Protective Edge when five Hamas commandos stormed Zikim Beach.

Israeli Navy drills against terrorist infiltration (Photo IDF Spokesperson's Unit) 4

The Israeli Navy finished holding a drill simulating a Hamas commando attack on the southern Israeli coastal towns of Ashdod and Ashkelon over the past week.

“After Hamas commandos stormed the beach at Zikim (during Operation Protective Edge), we realized that this is a logical and real scenario, ” said Lt. Col. Liab Zilberman, commander of the 916th Naval company.

The 916th Naval Company drilled not only on how to deal with sea infiltrations, but also on how to prevent infiltrations into the buffer zone with Gaza, commando attacks on the trans-Israel pipeline which pumps oil between Ashkelon and Eilat, and anti-ship missile evasion amongst other things.

 

Israeli Navy drills against terrorist infiltration (Photo IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

Israeli Navy drills against terrorist infiltration (Photo IDF Spokesperson's Unit) 2

 

“A lot of thought was given to the navy to improve its fighting capabilities and its system for fighting against enemy commandos, ” the Lt. Col. Said. “Since the event at Zikim, the shoe dropped and we understood that these frogmen are an issue which affects us all. We aren’t only drilling this week, but are constantly training every week and every month. This is something which everyone in the Navy takes into consideration.”

One of the takeaways from the final report of Operation Protective Edge was that the IDF must pay special attention to the threat of terrorists infiltrating Israel via the sea, especially during the next confrontation with Hamas.

During Operation Protective Edge, five Hamas naval commandos infiltrated Israel and were carrying out operations for almost 40 minutes before they were caught trying to enter Kibbutz Zikim. The succeeded in attaching an IED to the side of a tank, but caused no injuries. All five commandos were killed in an ensuing firefight.

 

By Itay Blumental, Ynet News

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