Two Palestinian Arabs sprayed an IDF soldier with pepper spray during an attempt to kidnap him overnight at the Rama base, north of Jerusalem.
The attackers were able to breach the security fence, then overpower the soldier and steal his weapon. The soldier was only lightly injured and immediately reported the attack.
IDF sources told Ynet that the incident is being treated as a severe security failure and that the weather in the area might have aided the men.
“This event made everyone very nervous,” a soldier serving on the base told Ynet. “We’re all very aware of the fact that this could have ended with an abduction or murder. No one understands how this could have happened.”
According to a statement issued by the IDF, “a soldier was assaulted overnight by two Palestinians adjacent to A-Ram and then fled the scene with his weapon. They threatened him with a fake gun and used tear gas against him. The circumstances of the incident are being investigated.”
IDF personnel arrived at the base Friday morning to conduct an investigation. The fact that the two Arab men did not try to severely injure the soldier has led investigators to believe the incident was criminal, rather than nationalistically motivated.
The inquiry will look into how the two were able to get as far as the soldier’s post without being detected, why the soldier did not engage the suspects and will try to discern whether he was properly briefed prior to assuming his post.