Daily Israel Report

Soldier Killed by Friendly-Fire: Captain Tal Nahman, 21

IDF soldier killed in friendly fire after mistaken for a terrorist revealed to be 21 year-old from Nes Ziona. Family in shock.
By Tova Dvorin
First Publish: 2/4/2014, 10:29 AM / Last Update: 2/4/2014, 11:00 AM

Capt. Tal Nahman
Capt. Tal Nahman
Courtesy of the Nahman family

The identity of the soldier killed Monday due to friendly fire near Gaza has been released: Captain Tal Nahman, 21, from Nes Ziona. 

Nahman was promoted to Captain posthumously. The funeral will take place at 3:00 pm Tuesday with a military ceremony at the cemetery in Nes Ziona. 

Reportedly the incident occurred during a routine operation to prevent the placement of explosives on the Gaza security fence, as well as infiltration by Gazan terrorists.

A senior official spoke to Arutz Sheva Tuesday and explained that a solider from the Givati infantry brigade saw a man standing over one of the intelligence unit vehicles and then entering the vehicle. Givati had only been stationed at the site for two weeks, the official said; the soldier on duty had never seen anything like it before, and thought it was a terrorist.

In practice, another soldier had fallen asleep briefly and dropped his gun; he went into the vehicle to retrieve it. The soldier on guard fired a "warning shot" and waited for a response; none came, so the soldier likely shot at the unknown man, killing him accidentally. 

The IDF is continuing to investigate the incident, according to the official. 

In the meantime, Nahman's family is in shock. 

"I can't believe that something like this could fall upon us," Nahman's father said, in tears. "A young soldier, just 21, a Captain in the IDF - who is killed in the end by friendly fire from Givati, over nothing." 

Nahman's father explained that Tal was signed up for commander training. "Apparently he was destined for something else," he continued. "We have now become a bereaved family, it will eventually sink in." 

On Tal, Nahman stated, "Tal was a boy who excelled in high school and went into the IDF, following his brother." 

"It was going to be the last day before he would have been off to training, to a quieter place," he explained in sorrow. 

"We didn't protect him enough," he concluded. "It was important for us that he be drafted into a combat unit. This is terribly difficult. We remain alone with our tragedy."