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Parents of fallen IDF surveillance soldiers visit Nahal Oz army base

Operations room of the surveillance soldiers at Nahal Oz IDF base

During a meeting initiated by the Israel Defense Forces, parents visited the operations room of the surveillance soldiers and toured the army base where dozens of soldiers were killed on the Black Shabbat.

The families of the surveillance troops and all other soldiers from the Nahal Oz army base who were killed during the Hamas terrorist infiltration on Oct. 7 were invited on Monday to visit the base.

During the first tour conducted by the IDF, the families visited the surveillance operations room and got a glimpse inside the base where the soldiers fell on Black Shabbat.

Among the families were also the parents of Sgt. Roni Eshel, who was thought to be missing for a month until the news of her death was finally received.

IDF Sgt. Roni Eshel's station in the operations room at Nahal Oz IDF base

Eyal Eshel, Roni’s father, spoke with Keren Neubach on the ‘Seder Yom’ program before the visit to the base and said: “We are traveling on a road soaked in much blood and bereavement, not only for us but for the entire country. The army apparently wanted to have closure with us, the families. Today we began at the Netivot Culture Center and then boarded minibuses in an orderly fashion to go to the base.”

Eyal recounted that this was his second time at the base since Oct. 7: “This is not the first time I’ve been here since October 7; I was here five days after the attack. There were still military vehicles on the road that had been sprayed with bullets and ZAKA was conducting its search and rescue operation and the evacuation of the bodies. It looked like a concentration camp; Roni was still missing.”

He added: “The area is full of military forces. Obviously, I ask where all these troops that we see here along the road from Netivot – where were they on that Saturday? It's simply shocking.”

Eyal spoke about the difficult emotions since Oct. 7 and the desire to get answers from the army: “We came for Roni and the other girls, to give them last honors, we came to see what is happening and what was here, to hear the story from the other side, from the IDF. I expected to receive answers here that were not given to us before. I’m not saying that the entire IDF committed a crime that morning. I believe that those responsible for this terrible failure need to give us the answers. Many people have perished; they are not with us.”

“I see the concrete barriers, and the attempts to revive the place. The houses are painted anew. There are new caravans. Different ones. We are about to enter the operations room that was set on fire and went up in flames. I really want to see where Roni sat in the last minutes. There are still booms here. These are not easy moments for us all, but it is a part of coping with the bereavement and what happened here,” Eyal said.

Operations room of the surveillance soldiers at Nahal Oz IDF base

Eyal talked about other parents who came to the base: “I am here with all the other parents, also the parents of the balloon operators and the operation sergeants, and of all the troops that were here, the Golani Brigade. We met with the family of Ibrahim Khroube, the military scout who also fell and must be remembered. He was one of the people who fought here. We heard that at 10 minutes to 12 p.m. he was still fighting and trying to protect the girls.” is the Hebrew news website of the The Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation

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