This report has some good news which has to be tempered by the remaining realities. There was a crowd estimated to include many hundreds at the Tuesday hearing and a fair number again yesterday all in support of the soldier demanding all charges be dropped (see video below which shows the front of the protests). There are some who have called for the soldier to receive a medal as he was a hero acting to protect both the other soldiers and the civilians who were present at the scene. There were also the B’Tselem instigators as well as some civilians at the scene of the shooting where some were yelling that the terrorist might have a bomb under his heavy coat, something which has occurred with some other stabbings and always a potential threat. The soldier reported that he reacted to the terrorist who was reaching under his coat which the soldier feared was the terrorist reaching for a detonator, the same terrorist who had already taken part in the stabbing of another soldier. One need remember that the soldier in question had arrived on scene a mere minute or two before suspecting the terrorist might have a bomb. The young man had not been briefed as to whether the terrorist had already been searched and suspected the worst case. At the Thursday hearings the government military prosecutor dropped the murder charges and requested they be replaced with simple manslaughter charge against the soldier. Where we here at BTC are glad over the dropping of the murder charge; we would rather the soldier be at worst be given a verbal warning and have him receive and the rest of his company receive additional training, especially on how to react in chaotic situations where there is confusion and threats are not fully determined. There were speakers including some Ministers of the Knesset and while such support is appreciated we will not list them as this story is about the future of a soldier who reacted in an effort to eradicate a severe threat he was witnessing.
The military prosecutor chosen for this case is Lt. Col. Adoram Rigler who stated that his review of the evidence which has been gathered strongly implied “serious suspicions,” and therefore asked to extend the soldier’s detention by another seven days. Part of continuing holding the soldier in detention limits greatly his opportunity to work with his defense team and collect the many “experts” in numerous fields which claim his shooting was understandable and possibly demanded by the situation. This was due to the information the soldier had and the actions of the terrorist which resulted in his being shot by the soldier. There have been “experts” of human motion, all military laws and “Rules of Engagement” and anything which will raise one’s stature in order to receive attention and do interviews. This has led to many people claiming things they believe were the events which led to the shooting. They are spread across the spectrum taking positions both for and against the soldier’s actions. The bevy of various NGOs concerned with “human rights” but whose actions are usually targeting IDF and Border Police doing their assigned tasks attempting through provocations to produce a shooting just as what occurred last week. The videotaping by B’Tselem at the scene makes one all the more suspicious that this was a set-up where they were hoping to produce an active confrontation. One need remember that B’Tselem receives the bulk of their funding not from Israel or Israelis but from European governments and other leftist European sources all of which are looking to destroy Israel in any manner possible. This corrupts the B’Tselem claim to be concerned with assisting the IDF and other security sources with their “human rights” considerations. Their release and supporting their carefully edited videos and not approaching the IDF and attempting to receive opportunities to brief and possibly instruct the soldiers in a more proper manner of handling situations damns their actions as intended to damage the IDF, not assist the IDF.
Perhaps we should look beyond this specific case and look at IDF actions and the surrounding influences and limitations and decide whether such Rules of Engagement (ROE) restricting their actions and even at times their ability for self-defense are placing the soldiers in far greater harm as well as the public or whether they represent prudent limitations on the use of force. In all too many cases the IDF hierarchy and high command immediately rush to back any accusation made against their troops. This lack of supporting the troops in any time of such conflict where accusations fly around coming from every corner will only result in troops refusing to serve beyond the Green Line or in Jerusalem likely causing far more dead troops and civilians. The commanders and especially the Defense Minister, Prime Minister and one would hope the Ministers from the Knesset, with some obvious exceptions, would back the soldier or at the very least remain neutral and simply state they hope the soldier’s actions prove to be proper but are awaiting the investigation which will be conducted in an orderly and professional manner. Instead we have had the Defense Minister, Knesset Ministers and commanders trying this case in the public taking the view that the soldier must be punished as his actions could never be justified no matter the situation. That is unprofessional and quite an unhelpful approach as it sets an atmosphere where those handling the case have to feel that they are being pressed to go after this soldier with every tool and twisting of facts required to validate these expectations. We are not asking for the General who commands the IDF to make a public announcement that they back the soldier 100% and see no reason to investigate the shooting. What we want is the making of no comment and not simply throwing the soldier to the piranhas from media who are already out for blood on the shooting. The displays of prejudging this case before all the facts have been gathered and findings made public and allowing the system to handle the aftermath has been disgusting at best and horrific at the worst. Everyone has decided the fate of this young man and is sending a message to the troops that a terrorist’s life is far more precious than are the soldiers of the IDF; and when commanders also take this position acting more like perfumed princes seeking public favor from the wealthy leftist influences which have abounded in this case the troops lose morale and start to doubt the support they were taught would back them.
Meanwhile, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade, which belongs to Abbas’s Fatah have lauded praises upon terrorists who shot Israelis near Hevron on Friday. There were two attacks on Friday involving shooting by terrorists, the first was where two teens were wounded by terrorist gunfire near the Cave of the Patriarchs, and the second targeted a soldier wounding him in a separate shooting attack at Beit Anun. These shootings are an escalation which started a few weeks back as the stabbings and attempts to ram pedestrians and people waiting at bus stops with vehicles continues. This has been the trend of past intifadas where there is a slow but steady progression from throwing rocks to throwing boulders attempting to murder the occupants in passing vehicles. This inevitably leads to stabbings and the attempts to use vehicles to ram and run over people which were a new twist that started soon after the stabbings. The slow escalation with shooting slowly ramped up has thus far succeeded in keeping the media, with a few exceptions, ignoring the new phase and thus giving any reports almost an afterthought and not worthy of the headline on page one. This simply furthers the mood and understanding of the situation we have placed the IDF, Border Police and other units into as the increasing deadliness of attacks being ignored lulls the public into thinking that the terrorist attacks have not necessarily crossed into a mood where the soldiers feel more of a threat and thus become more urgent in their handling of terrorist arrests or detentions. The situation having escalated it should be accepted that troops would be expecting suicide bombings as that is the progression after shootings start with a few weeks between each start. It is the old adage of placing the frog in a pan of water and slowly raising it to a boil and the frog does not move but attempting to throw the frog into already boiling water the frog resists and attempts to immediately jump from the water. The public are the first frog and the IDF and others on the front line the second, which explains part of the disconnect between much of the public and those actually under threat. Fortunately, most Israelis, outside of those refusing to ever see terrorism by the Arab Palestinians, understand the tactics and remain aware of the actual level of violence being faced by the soldiers as well as members of the public who could become targets of these shooters. The exception is the media which often takes the extreme leftist view of situation as their living in a bubble where their communities are fenced and guarded and they work in the safest of conditions and thus do not feel the same threats as do the public.
The trial of this soldier will continue and the longer it drags on, the better, as the media will lose their interest and the leftist agitators are already planning their next confrontation. The best hope is for the matter to be out of the public eye when there is less or no pressures to convict the soldier making him a sacrificial lamb sacrificed to the leftist agitations paid for by European money. The fact that these NGOs are permitted to operate as if they were actually Israeli funded and indigenous groups when often “experts” from Europe often come and work with the NGOs in preparing and sometimes actually participating in provocations which are always filmed so that they can be released, well, after some heavy editing as some actions must be hidden. This type of slanted actions by the media was also very evident in another case from April of 2012 where Europeans had gathered some Arab Palestinians and they began a convoy on a major thoroughfare blocking and slowing traffic in one direction. When confronted by an IDF unit the provocations rose significantly. Lieutenant Colonel Shaul Eisner was commanding these troops and was at the scene. Lieutenant Colonel Eisner, who was filmed striking a protester with his rifle butt which was all one heard for weeks on the media covering this “serious breach of protocol and loss of control” by an IDF commander. Lieutenant Colonel Eisner was made a sacrificial lamb on the altar of political correctness and was reprimanded and was barred from command positions for two years. Lieutenant Colonel Eisner stated that he regretted hitting activist “in front of cameras,” always in front of the ever-present cameras used at the confrontations. What was left out of every video and conversation in the media was the fact that the Lieutenant Colonel received a broken finger after one of the European “human rights” activists grabbed his hand and attacked the Lieutenant Colonel breaking his finger. That provocation was of little if any coverage as he should remain completely unfazed by such an assault and injury.
The disconnect is first that the terrorism suffered in Israel is considered by most Western media, experts and others to be completely separate from the terrorism suffered in the West and other places outside of Israel. Somehow the Israelis are treated as if they deserve the terrorism they receive and that the Arabs shooting and bombing in Israel have no connection or links to the terrorists striking Paris or Brussels or Boston or San Bernardino. This is a false assumption and should the West be interested in what kind of terrorism they will be facing in the coming years as the numbers of Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) “refugees” continue pouring into their countries they need look no further than Israel and the current level of violence and watch the escalation and learn. This is a war between two competing social orders, the freedom and liberties of the West against the stifling oppressive theocracies of MENA and the levels of violence and restriction on the media and life in general. Eventually, and it should not take too long, the West will awaken and realize they have a big and growing problem on their hands wrought by their own altruistic fallacies that permitted a snake to make its way into their tents and now even into their sleeping bags making life endangered. We do not expect the West to wake up until the war is all but lost but please leave Israel alone to at least fight the rising menaces in the Middle East. Do not moralize us as you do not understand and when you figure out the problem we will be glad to offer what assistance and advice as we are able and requested. We do not tell you how to treat terrorist acts in your house; please do not interfere with our handling terrorism in our house.
Beyond the Cusp