[Freemanlist2] Yaakov Katz - IDF warns of tunnels in West Bank
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[Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA: Many retreat supporters embraced the fence as a
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IDF warns of tunnels in West Bank
Yaakov Katz, THE JERUSALEM POST Feb. 11, 2007
With dozens of tunnels being dug across the Philadelphia Corridor - between
the Gaza Strip and Egypt - an IDF officer has told The Jerusalem Post that
he believes it is only a matter of time before Palestinians in the West Bank
also begin using tunnels in attacks against Israel.
According to the officer, Maj. Eran Davidi, deputy commander of Sayeret
Yahalom, the Engineering Corps's elite unit, Palestinians could begin
digging tunnels under the West Bank security fence when it is completed
since they will be cut off from Israel.
"At first it will start with criminal infiltrations and people looking for
jobs," he said. "But like the southern border with Egypt, the terrorists
will then begin to catch a ride on the back of the criminal infrastructure
and will also use the tunnels."
Responsible for defusing bombs and mines and destroying tunnels, Sayeret
Yahalom played a key role during the Lebanon war this past summer in
tracking down and demolishing Hizbullah bunkers and command centers.
The unit has also operated extensively in the Gaza Strip. In the IDF's last
operation there before the cease-fire went into effect in November, Sayeret
Yahalom was behind the discovery and demolition of over a dozen tunnels in
Rafah that were used to smuggle weapons in from Sinai.
Last week, Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) Chief Yuval Diskin said there
were at least 10 tunnels being dug from Gaza into Israel intended to be used
in attacks against Israeli targets, including IDF outposts. He said that
there were dozens of tunnels being dug in Rafah that are used to smuggle
weapons into Gaza from the Sinai Desert.
Davidi further revealed that the Palestinians had recently improved their
defense systems around tunnels and that now almost every tunnel in the Gaza
Strip was surrounded with booby-traps and explosive devices.
During the operation in Gaza in November, Yahalom discovered a massive
tunnel being dug inside a chicken coop that was booby-trapped with
He also said that the explosives used by the Palestinians were supplied by
Iran and Syria and were of high quality.
"We work under the assumption that almost every tunnel is surrounded with
bombs and booby-traps," Davidi said.
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