Photo revealing Israeli F-35 secrets reportedly posted online by IDF soldiers
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Photo revealing Israeli F-35 secrets reportedly posted online by IDF soldiers

Hadashot says other images of a secret tank and a naval commando operations center have also found their way onto the internet

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

The IDF General Staff visits the F-35 stealth fighter jet squadron on the Nevatim air base in southern Israel on July 10, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
The IDF General Staff visits the F-35 stealth fighter jet squadron on the Nevatim air base in southern Israel on July 10, 2017. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

Israel Defense Forces soldiers reportedly took photographs of classified equipment and then posted them on the internet, exposing sensitive material to the public.

Among the photos — all of which have since been removed — was one of an Israel F-35 stealth fighter in an underground bunker at the Nevatim base in the south of the country, Hadashot TV news reported Tuesday. The photo showed the plane being armed while a “foreign entity” was seen attending to the craft, the report said.

Hadashot did not say where the photo was published.

According to the report, the air force takes care to not photograph its F-35s carrying weapons so as not to give away information about its capabilities or the equipment being tested with it.

In addition, a technician at a tank base in the Golan Heights photographed a secret tank and posted the photo to a military forum.

A tank officer who saw the photos told Hadashot, “This is shocking, like an act of espionage. Anyone who does something like this is aiding Israel’s enemies.”

The IDF tank corps has various designs of tanks carrying classified equipment.

In a third incident, a navy serviceman took a photograph in the navy’s commando unit combat war room, a key command center for the elite unit, the report said. The photo was uploaded to the same internet military forum, apparently hosted by the Hadashot website.

The confidential photos were all taken by soldiers and officers, none of whom had permission to publish the material, the report said.

After army officials became aware of what happened, they took measures to ensure all the photos were removed from the web.

The report did not say when any of the photos were taken or put on the internet.

The IDF has for some time been trying to stamp out cases of soldiers taking photographs of sensitive material with their cellphone cameras and then publishing them on the internet.

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