New Netzach Yehuda commander recipient of top bravery award

Incoming haredi battalion commander Nitai Okashi received bravery award in 2007 for tackling a terrorist preparing to throw a grenade.

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Tzvi Lev,

Netzach Yehuda soldiers
Netzach Yehuda soldiers
Nahal Haredi NGO

It was announced Sunday that Major Nitai Okashi will be the next commander of the Nahal Haredi-Netzach Yehuda Unit battalion, replacing Lieutenant Colonel Itamar Deshel. Okashi is expected to take command in September 2018 and will be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

Okashi is a decorated officer, having received a citation for bravery in 2007 for wrestling with a terrorist as he was preparing a grenade.

On July 21, 2007, Okashi and a fellow commander in the Golani Brigade raced forward to battle two terrorists encountered by his soldiers during operations in Gaza, killing one. The second terrorist stood between him and his men, readying a grenade

Ordering his troops to lie flat, Okashi charged the terrorist but ran out of ammunition – so he tackled the terrorist and wrestled him to the ground with his bare hands.

The Golani captain held on to the terrorist as the grenade exploded, ensuring that the terrorist absorbed most of the blast. Despite the wounds Okashi suffered in the explosion, he continued to hold down the terrorist while his soldiers raced forward and killed the terrorist..

The award given to Okashi noted his bravery, resourcefulness, leadership, determination and setting a personal example.

Nahal Haredi, also known as Netzach Yehuda, is a battalion in the Kfir Brigade that enables haredi soldiers to serve in the IDF, but also includes a good number of Religious Zionist soldiers. Women are forbidden on base, and soldiers receive special food that conforms to a stringent halakhic standard of Jewish dietary laws.