3 hurt in brawl between troops, career soldiers and civilian on Lebanon border

Servicemen conducting patrol along security barrier said to claim off-duty NCOs did not identify themselves as members of IDF; Military Police investigating

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.

Israeli soldiers on the border between Lebanon and Israel, March 15, 2023. (David Cohen/Flash90)
Israeli soldiers on the border between Lebanon and Israel, March 15, 2023. (David Cohen/Flash90)

Two soldiers and an off-duty non-commissioned officer were lightly hurt in a violent brawl on the border with Lebanon on Friday, the Israel Defense Forces said.

According to the IDF, two off-duty NCOs and a civilian — reported to be the father of one of them — approached the security barrier on the Lebanese border, after which a clash erupted with soldiers conducting a routine patrol in the area. It was not clear what sparked the tussle.

The IDF said one of the soldiers shot into the air amid the incident.

Army Radio reported that according to the soldiers, the NCOs — who serve in the IDF’s Northern Command — did not identify themselves as military personnel.

One of the soldiers was poked in the eye, and the other was knocked out after being punched, the report said. The wounded NCO’s injuries were not detailed.

The IDF said the three were taken to be treated at a hospital.

The second NCO and civilian were apparently unharmed in the brawl.

“This is a serious incident that is inconsistent with IDF values,” the military said in a statement.

In addition to investigations by the involved troops’ commanders, a Military Police probe was launched, the IDF added.

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