The IDF's naval fleet halted its fire on Monday as part of the unofficial humanitarian ceasefire, but the troops of the 916th Company were still on high alert.
"They could try to get an image of victory even in the form of our ship on fire," the troops said. "So far they tried to fire mortar shells and gunfire at us, unsuccessfully."
|With Israel Navy across Gaza's shores (Video: Barel Ephraim)|
The Navy is enforcing a full naval blockade of the Gaza Strip during the operation, preventing any ships from sailing out of the Gaza shore. It does so with unmanned surface vessels like Protector USV and Shayetet 13's NSW-Naval Special Warfare, Tzira ships and missile boats, among others.
The Navy fighters participated in dozens of missions, "70% were offensive, 30% were for the collection of intelligence," one of the commanders said.
The Gaza shore (Photo: Barel Efraim) "We're ready to combat arms struggling attempts from Sinai through the sea that could happen now that many of the smuggling tunnels have been destroyed, and we're also ready to stop protest flotillas to the Strip," another commanding officer said.
The soldiers fired dozens of guided missiles from the sea deep into the Gaza Strip so far, and launched dozens of shells from the Navy's Typhoon cannons in order to clear targeted areas for the ground troops, as well as against rocket launchers firing from the beach.
Shayetet 13 fighter (Photo: Barel Efraim)
"Lately we've been protecting strategic assets as well, like power plants and gas drills. We're prepared for the next stage of the operation and have a lot of motivation for the future," the Navy commander of the southern Gaza shores, Colonel Ido, said.
Navy commander Maj.-Gen. Ram Rotberg joins most of the naval operations. He even had time to diner food cooked by the mother of one of the sailors.
"I did 42 days away from home in kibbutz Gevim, near Sderot," one of the sailors said. "Most of the time I don't have a phone on me, because of our operations, but we find ways to make sure everything's okay with the family."