LBC Reporter Grills Israeli Special Forces Soldier Over Hamas Gun Battle

28 June 2018, 11:22

This is what happened when LBC questioned an Israeli Special Forces soldier over the recent gun battle with Hamas.

LBC has gained exclusive access to the military controlled Gaza border area.

Our senior reporter Matthew Thompson donned his flak jacket and went to meet Israeli soldiers, to understand how they had experienced recent violence that since March has seen over 120 Palestinians killed.

He managed to speak with an Israeli special forces soldier who fought a gun battle with Hamas on 14th May.

Staff Sergeant L told him: "We got a lead from intelligence that Hamas were using citizens as cover to breach into Israel.

"Commanders would not let us shoot at all, because there were many citizens and we didn't know who were the actual terrorists.

"When Hamas started shooting at us, the citizens of Gaza got nervous and started running away. My team waiting until the citizens cleared. The moment we saw a Hamas terrorist hold a gun - or anything that could harm our team - we shot at these terrorists.

"It was a difficult situation. On the one hand, you're being shot at by Hamas terrorists, but on the other, you don't want to shoot randomly at civilians. The soldier is in a very delicate situation.

"I know that in my team, we only shot at people who were shooting at us."

Matthew Thompson spoke to an Israeli Special Forces Soldier
Matthew Thompson spoke to an Israeli Special Forces Soldier. Picture: LBC

But Matthew put to him: "In the smoke, the noise, the adrenaline, it must be hard to be sure.

"It would be easy to mistake, say a television camera for a gun. It's easy to talk about clean-cut when we're standing safe, but in the event itself, it must be hard to be sure."

Staff Sergeant L insisted: "It was horrible, there was smoke, there were bullets being shot. But the system that we've learnt doesn't allow for us to randomly shoot."