Israeli Minister Revealed Details on Gaza Tunnel Strike the Army Wanted Under Wraps

After the army said the attack tunnel 'was neutralized in a controlled explosion,' Bennett revealed additional details about the strike in an interview

Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Naftali Bennettat at a cabinet meeting, October 2017.
Naftali Bennettat at a cabinet meeting, October 2017.Credit: Yoav Dudkevich

Education Minister Naftali Bennett revealed details the military did not want released concerning Monday’s destruction of an attack tunnel that had been dug from the Gaza Strip into Israel.

The Israel Defense Forces has blocked the release of the information because it touched on new ways for addressing the tunnel threat.

The Southern Command said the tunnel “was neutralized in a controlled explosion,” but did not give details.

Bennett then became a sought-after guest for interviews after he attacked the IDF spokesman, Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis, for allegedly apologizing for the deaths of the eight militants killed in the blast. Bennett tweeted that it is forbidden to apologize for killing anyone digging a tunnel designed to allow the killing of Israeli women and children.

Bennett was responding to comments Manelis made to military correstpondents. Asked if top commanders of Islamic Jihad had been targeted in the explosion, Manelis said no, and that the death of the eight men was “a side effect” – though he did not apologize.

Bennett’s office said in response: “Fake news. It never happened. Bennett will continue to safeguard IDF soldiers.”

During the 2014 Gaza war – Operation Protective Edge – Hamas and its allies used tunnels to make incursions into Israel, one of the major developments of the seven-week war over the summer.