MK Miri Regev (Likud), formerly the IDF Spokesperson, sent her condolences on Sunday night to the families of the 13 Golani Brigade officers and soldiers who were killed in an attack on their armored personnel carrier in Gaza.
With that, Regev said that the operation in Gaza is necessary in order to stop Hamas’s rocket fire against Israeli civilians.
"On this difficult day, when the tears are welling up, all of Israel embraces the families of the soldiers who were killed and salutes all the soldiers, both on regular and reserve duty, and all the officers who are at the forefront, leading the soldiers in a battle against the deadly organization Hamas," she said.
Regev pointed out that among the killed and injured soldiers were commanding officers who led by example.
"This is an example set by a commander in the Israeli army, who goes with his fighters and sets a personal example for his men, unlike Hamas who uses civilians as human shields,'' she said.
Regev added that with all the sorrow over the death of the soldiers, "we have no other choice. We must ensure the security of our citizens and make sure that Hamas will not return to its abilities, even if we have to retake Gaza.”
The soldiers and commanders of the army, I salute you in these difficult times," she concluded.
On Sunday night, the IDF cleared for publication the names of five of the 13 officers and soldiers who were killed in the APC attack.
Captain Tzafrir Bar-Or, a commander in the Golani Brigade, 32, of Holon. His funeral will be held Monday at 1:00 p.m. in the military section of the cemetery in Holon.
Major Zvi Kaplan, a commander in the Golani Brigade, 28, from Kedumim. His funeral will be held Monday at 11:00 a.m. at the military cemetery in Haifa.
Gilad Yaakobi, 21, of Kiryat Ono. His funeral will be held Monday at 10:00 a.m. at the Kiryat Shaul cemetery in Tel Aviv.
Sergeant Oz Mendelovich, 21, from Avtalion. His funeral will be held Monday at 6:00 p.m. at the Misgav cemetery.
Nissim Shon Carmeli, 21, of Ra'anana.
The names of eight additional officers killed in the same incident have yet to be released.
The IDF has released a timeline of the events early Sunday morning in which the 13 soldiers were killed in Gaza.
In the first incident, at 1:05 a.m., an armored personnel carrier caught fire after an explosive device was set off under it. Seven soldiers were killed.
At 1:30 a.m., a soldier was killed when two soldiers got into a firefight with terrorists.
At 5:45 a.m., another Golani force got into a firefight with terrorists. Two soldiers were killed.
At 8:50 a.m., three soldiers were killed when a Golani squad was caught inside a burning building.