Silent 'guardians:' Inside the enigmatic world of the Al-Qassam Brigades' Shadow Unit

News Bulletin Reports
2023-12-01 | 10:26
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Silent 'guardians:' Inside the enigmatic world of the Al-Qassam Brigades' Shadow Unit
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3min
Silent 'guardians:' Inside the enigmatic world of the Al-Qassam Brigades' Shadow Unit

The group's delivery of Israeli hostages to the International Committee of the Red Cross stands out in terms of form, precision, photography, and even the chosen locations. Who is responsible for executing these tasks in the Al-Qassam Brigades?

The Shadow Unit is one of the most important and secretive military units in the Al-Qassam Brigades, known for its professionalism.

Its primary and sole mission is to secure the lives of Israeli hostages, keeping them in the "realm of the unknown," and, most importantly, deceiving Israeli intelligence through high-precision camouflage and diversion techniques to ensure successful captive exchange operations.

Also among its tasks is treating the captives with dignity and respect in accordance with Islamic provisions and providing them with comprehensive material and moral care. 

As for the selection of its members, they are chosen from all brigades and combat formations. 

This process is not easy, as they undergo rigorous training, psychological warfare courses, emotional stability tests, and intense physical training to enhance their security and military capabilities.

One of the distinctive features of the Shadow Unit is complete silence, avoiding chatter entirely and staying away from the media.

The unit, which returned to the spotlight during the Al-Aqsa Flood operation and the hostage exchange with Israel after it was permitted, was responsible for securing Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who was captured by Hamas in 2006, preserved his life for five years, and was able to move him from inside the Gaza Strip to inside the Egyptian border under Israeli surveillance, without Tel Aviv being able to determine his location during the journey. 

This eventually led to his exchange in the "Wafa al-Ahrar" operation for 1,027 Palestinian captives.

The specific tasks assigned to the Shadow Unit have made it a unit that remains distant from mention and tangible existence except in cases within its sphere of interest. 

The unit's name disappeared from Hamas rhetoric over the years, leading some to believe it no longer existed until the announcement by the spokesperson for the Al-Qassam Brigades, known as "Abu Obeida," at the end of July 2022, about the death of a member of the Shadow Unit and the injury of three others. 

This resulted from Israel targeting a location where an Israeli soldier was held during the Israeli war on Gaza in May 2021.

It emerged in 2016, ten years after its establishment.
 

News Bulletin Reports

Middle East News

Al-Qassam Brigades

Shadow Unit

Israel

Hostages

Red Cross

Camouflage

Warfare

Al-Aqsa Flood

Gilad Shalit

Wafa al-Ahrar

Palestinian

Abu Obeida

Gaza

Hamas

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