A surprising photo, which shows an Israeli female soldier tanning at a Tel Aviv beach with an M16 rifle slung around her shoulder, has become an internet phenomenon after being posted on the web, with thousands of viewers wondering who the mystery woman is.
The photo of the armed sunbather was posted onto Facebook in late May under the caption "Only in Israel," and quickly went viral - turning the soldier into a media sensation.
The photo quickly caught the attention of some of the world's most popular newspapers from New York to New Delhi, and has already received over 650,000 views on Facebook and other websites.
"Bikini-clad, gun-toting Israeli woman becomes an Internet sensation," was the headline of the New York Daily News online newspaper last Friday, while the British newspaper The Sun chose quite an amusing headline: "Fun in the sun (with a gun) for Israeli soldier."
Thousands of viewers have expressed their curiosity about whether the brunette beauty was part of Israel's military and why she wasn't in uniform.
Members of the Israeli military are required to carry their weapons at all times if they are taken outside their base. "But if she is on patrol in the snap," viewers wondered, "it's unclear why the soldier has opted for swimwear rather than a military uniform." One blogger further asked "Where does she keep her spare bullets?"
The photo was also published in Indian, Italian and Spanish news websites.
One web surfer complemented the two sunbathing soldiers in the picture, saying "I see these two beautiful girls protecting the beach, and I say to myself: 'This is heaven.'"
However, not everybody liked the photo. Some of "The Sun" readers expressed their shock to the sight of a weapon on such a beautiful sun-soaked beach.
One reader chose to slander Israel, writing "How can Israel call itself a democracy? It's disgusting."
- Receive Ynetnews updates
directly to your desktop