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Richard Kemp reports


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Power Line

Scott Johnson

Dec. 192023


Retired British Colonel Richard Kemp is an outsider to Israel’s conflict who knows what he’s talking about. He is embedded with Israeli troops in combat in Shijaiyahin Gaza, where he recorded the following video.

The video is posted with his Ynet column on the friendly fire incident that took the lives of three IDF soldiers taken hostage by Hamas. He writes: “Sickeningly, the usual suspects in the media have gleefully rushed to judgment, wheeling out so-called experts to say how this tragedy shows just how trigger-happy, ill-disciplined and gung-ho the IDF is. That’s because they don’t understand the situation in Gaza, have limited understanding of hard fighting on the ground and only too often want the IDF to be the bad guys.”

Colonel Kemp’s Ynet column must run some 800 words. You have to keep clicking “Read more” to get it all. He writes toward the end, where he also draws on his own personal experience in combat with terrorists:

In Gaza, the hostages were waving a makeshift white flag and calling out in Hebrew. One escaped into a building and then re-emerged before running back. Each of these actions could easily have been read as a dangerous terrorist ploy and presumably were by the soldiers on the ground.
There is every reason for that. Hamas has previously feigned surrender and then tried to kill IDF troops moving to capture them. In this same area and elsewhere, terrorists have also used Hebrew voices to simulate hostages in order to lure soldiers into a trap. In one example that I’ve been told about, also in Shijaiyah, they used a speaker inside a building with a recording of a child’s voice crying out for “abba” (father). The soldiers, knowing every second could count, rapidly entered the booby-trapped building and some were killed and wounded. Just a couple of days ago terrorists used a talking doll stolen from a child hostage for the same lethally cynical purpose….



Among other things, Colonel Kemp is a distinguished senior fellow of the Gatestone Institute, where he publishes occasional columns. Everything he writes is worth reading. His Gatestone profile briefly notes that he spent most his 30-year career in the British Army fighting terrorism and insurgency, commanding front-line troops in some of the world’s toughest hotspots including Iraq, the Balkans, South Asia and Northern Ireland. He was Commander of British Forces in Afghanistan in 2003. He has also been involved in direction of British national policy at the highest level. From 2002-2006 he served in the British Prime Minister’s Office, heading the international terrorism team at the Joint Intelligence Committee.

Ynet column via The Mosaic Daily/Editor’s Picks.


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