Israeli army releases video of Dec. 12 killing of Palestinian youth at Hebron checkpoint

on 58 Comments

The Israeli military has released, on an Arabic YouTube channel, this surveillance video of the shooting of Mohammed Salayme last Wednesday, Dec. 12, at a checkpoint in Hebron. 

The captions on the video describe a “Palestinian male” arriving at the checkpoint– the “border police” — talking to an officer, then attacking that officer. Then the male is “neutralized” by others. Gunfire is clearly visible.

In earlier accounts, the Israelis said that Salayme was carrying a toy gun and threatened the border police before an officer fired six shots at him. Does anyone see a gun in Salayme’s hand? He appears to be swinging a plastic bag.

Also Allison Deger notes that there is a skip in the video at second 24 or so. Was something edited out?

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58 Responses

  1. Abierno
    December 17, 2012, 2:12 pm

    This youth is deaf – he would not be talking with a border guard. This video would
    suggest the possibility of some provocation since he passed through this checkpoint many times and was known to the IOF soldiers. Were they laughing
    at him as suggested by an All Voices post?

    • Elisabeth
      December 18, 2012, 3:50 am

      I saw a video of him talking to his brother in Gaza. I don’t think he is deaf, hard of hearing maybe…

  2. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    December 17, 2012, 2:27 pm

    Do we even know the young man in the video is Mohammed Salayme? Also, as far as I can see, there is no timeline on this video. It could be a complete fabrication for all we know. And if the IDF had this video available all along, why the delay in releasing it?

    • Talkback
      December 17, 2012, 3:01 pm

      Because they had to search for a similar video in their archives?

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        December 17, 2012, 3:55 pm

        I reckon the IDF need to employ better translators. The intro at the start says ‘Attack OF Border Police Officer’. Or maybe that was a Freudian slip? You’d think that with all those American ‘settlers’ in the Hebron area, they could get the thing checked by a native speaker?

      • Annie Robbins
        December 18, 2012, 1:11 am

        the start says ‘Attack OF Border Police Officer’. Or maybe that was a Freudian slip?


      • Accentitude
        December 18, 2012, 1:23 am

        I was thinking the exact same thing when I saw this. And if indeed this is the actual video (I have my doubts) doesn’t it seem a little distasteful and amateur to post it on youtube? I can’t decided what I’m going to watch…that Gangam style parody or….the Israeli army’s official surveillance video of the murder of a teenage Palestinian in Al Khalil.

  3. mondonut
    December 17, 2012, 2:45 pm

    Where is that famous cake?

    • seafoid
      December 17, 2012, 4:54 pm

      The cake was anti semitic. A bun libel.

    • GilGamesh
      December 17, 2012, 6:01 pm

      that’s what I want to know.
      the video is too dark to tell if he pulled out a fake gun but he certainly did not have a cake.

    • tree
      December 17, 2012, 7:00 pm

      Where is that famous cake?

      And look, the toy gun shoots real bullets!

      Clearly this is NOT a video of the December 12 killing.

    • Accentitude
      December 18, 2012, 1:36 am

      Glad you asked, dunkin’ donut. Well, if you go down main street in downtown Al Khalil, eventually you’ll come up to a checkpoint. Now, don’t make eye contact, don’t talk, don’t breath, don’t wink, blink, burp, spit, huff, puff, tap, snap, hiccup, cough, yawn, clear your throat or ahem. The border guards are stationed well outside their borders in a foreign country and have itchy trigger fingers and can’t wait to kill non-jews. Now once you cross that checkpoint, you’ll see the place on the right. Go in and tell ’em you want to buy a “famous cake”. He’ll know what you’re talkin’ about…..*wink wink*

      • ritzl
        December 18, 2012, 2:25 am

        Yeah, speaking of itchy trigger fingers, six in the chest, which means before he started falling, screams full auto.

        Just bizarre.

        It is impossible for ANY even relatively free person to remotely comprehend what Palestinians endure under this completely racist, “their life is cheap” occupation.

        Kill, kill, kill…

        Rudoren remarks on the “culture.” Well the culture is if yours get killed all the time with impunity and/or without recourse, what the hell is left but to internalize it and wait for an outlet.

        Who knows what that outlet will be.

  4. Obsidian
    December 17, 2012, 2:46 pm

    I see the youth handing over an ID card, than swinging something onto a table (for an inspection), than pointing something at the soldier’s head and than assaulting the soldier.

    The video Mondoweiss posted of the youth speaking to his brother on a audio/video connection does not suggest that the youth had a hearing impairment.

  5. dimadok
    December 17, 2012, 2:55 pm

    First, thank you for the posting. Second, does anyone feels like retracting their statements?

    • OlegR
      December 17, 2012, 3:35 pm

      I doubt it.
      Hard to admit a mistake especially when you are politicized,
      requires integrity.

    • seafoid
      December 17, 2012, 4:53 pm

      They killed Mohamed ad Durra as well, Dim

      cue Dim spitting coffee onto his computer screen and calling in the hasbara heavies.

    • Shingo
      December 17, 2012, 5:18 pm

      So, see Avi G’s comment.

      Do you want to retract yours?

    • yrn
      December 17, 2012, 5:49 pm


      “does anyone feels like retracting their statements?”
      No way……..

      “Israeli authorities had already claimed that the attacker had a toy gun. ”
      You said it well….. they discovered the toy gun after the incident…….
      what do you want to claim by that……..

    • tree
      December 17, 2012, 7:01 pm

      Second, does anyone feels like retracting their statements?

      I predict the IDF will issue a retraction in a few days. The video doesn’t align with their story.

    • Mooser
      December 17, 2012, 7:05 pm

      “Second, does anyone feels like retracting their statements?”

      Aww, poor Zionist, his amour- propre done been dinged. Feel like retracting any illegal settlements, Dimmy?

  6. Avi_G.
    December 17, 2012, 2:58 pm

    There is an inconsistency here:

    When gunfire is seen in the video, it is coming from both the direction of the Israeli magavnik and the alleged attacker. But, Israeli authorities had already claimed that the attacker had a toy gun.

    So which is it, Israel?

    • Obsidian
      December 17, 2012, 3:36 pm


      I see something shiny in the youth’s right hand during his assault. Do you?

      • Annie Robbins
        December 17, 2012, 10:33 pm

        hey obiwan, just out of you think a spielberg cameraman/person or editor perhaps (or even a cohen bros editor) could actually produce a video like this from scratch? w/actors and all? not that i think israelis have the capacity to shovel out grade A hollywood blockbuster stuff like americans can, but just on a lark and all…i am curious. israel’s FMinistry is always bragging about how hi tech (ha!) israel is, first in computers and all that..but that probably doesn’t include like..photoshop, final cut pro, or anything serious huh? they’re so like..backwards. another thing, if tel aviv were in hollywood (which it’s not) it would be one thing, but it ain’t. it’s in the friggin backwater of the middle east! why i bet hardly anyone in israel even knows anyone in hollywood for hecks sake. and if they did it certainly wouldn’t be on the level of a spielberg type. getting in w/the big guys is seriously tough.

        plus, it would require time. i mean, you can’t just fabricate a video of this quality in 5 days! not unless you’re the know, as in knowing some real filmmakers. otherwise, not gonna happen.

        the iof is made up of a bunch of know nothing kids. i mean like, the kids around here can make videos like this i a lickity split second. but we’re talking israel. no way. that’s why..when push comes to shove, it’s just gotta be real. because there’s just no talent over there to produce something like this. heck, it ain’t america, and it’s certainly NOT hollywood.

      • Mooser
        December 18, 2012, 4:00 pm

        “when push comes to shove, it’s just gotta be real.”

        Annie, if it isn’t Grade “A” Fancy, double-pure, certified organically true, how did it get on You-Tube? Ha!

    • OlegR
      December 17, 2012, 3:39 pm

      Look a again Avi that’s the impact of the bullet.

    • tree
      December 17, 2012, 6:58 pm

      Avi’s right. The unidentified civilian appears to have fired 2 to 3 shots while being shot 2 to 3 times in return. There are also at least 3 uniformed people involved in the fight prior to the shooting. None of that coincides with the Israeli story of what happened. It looks like some other incident they are trying to pass off as the incident on December 12. I also find it odd/unbelieveable that the only surveillance camera they had was one placed a such a long distance away. Looks like a bad attempt at a whitewash to me. They’ve done it before.

    • Avi_G.
      December 17, 2012, 10:43 pm

      In watching the video on a larger screen, I now realize that what first appeared to me to be gunfire coming from the direction of the alleged Palestinian is actually ricochets from either the ground or a nearby wall. That is why the flash — or more accurately, the spark — appears to be of lower intensity than the muzzle flash coming from the Israelis’ guns.

      Still, this video is worthless due to the very low resolution, grainy images and the Israeli equivalent of Nixon’s 17 minutes of erased tape.

    • andrew r
      December 18, 2012, 2:52 am

      The Arabic description of the video sticks to the official story (via Google):

      “The attempted attack on a border policeman in Hebron

      Videotape documenting a Palestinian attempt arrived barrier to force of border guards near the Ibrahimi Mosque in 12/13/2012 months pistol and approached a police and tried to assault him before he was killed by border guards fire. And later found that the gun was a placebo.”

      Maybe the family will comment on the video, confirm it is the checkpoint and point out any other facts. It just raises more questions than answers.

      One thing that’s obvious is that the guy in white swung first and if he was armed it would’ve made a lot more sense for the soldier to make the first move. So we are now to believe this guy pulled out his fake gun while scuffling with an IDF soldier.

  7. American
    December 17, 2012, 3:30 pm

    I don’t care what the actual truth is, sorry I just don’t. Israel has committed so many senseless killings I don’t give [email protected] if one happens to be justified or a “mistake”. Israel is guilty period. Why would anyone care if a serial killer is falsely convicted of killing 20 girls instead of just the 19 he really killed?

    • OlegR
      December 18, 2012, 4:25 am

      At least somebody is honest here.
      An honest enemy is much better then an enemy hiding behind big word about peace and justice.

      • Shingo
        December 18, 2012, 6:03 am

        It’s a pity your not a honest enemy Oleg, while you hide behind big words about security and self defense

      • Talkback
        December 18, 2012, 8:37 am

        I agree, OlegR. Israel and its dishonest supporters are much worse than they are.

  8. American
    December 17, 2012, 3:42 pm

    Price Tag?…I hope so. I never know if Israeli articles are accurate or not but I predicted that at some point Israel could start losing business because of the chaos and risk it creates. So I hope this is true.

    Middle East Tensions Scare Off US Company from Israel

    A US company balked at dealing with an Israeli firm because of concern over area tensions, setting off fears of a “security boycott.”
    By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
    First Publish: 12/17/2012, 11:04 AM
    A US company has ended negotiations with an Israeli firm for a large contract because of concern over area tension, setting off fears of a “security boycott.”
    The unnamed American subsidiary of the L-3 space communications firm has cited “concern over the situation in the Middle East,” reported Israel Defense, which added, “The message that reached the company in Israel stated that ‘we do not want to approve suppliers from Israel.’”
    Last month’s massive Hamas missile bombardment, which reached Tel Aviv, set off the alarm bells. At the time, several companies, including Teva Pharmaceuticals, received worried phone calls from customers.
    On the last day of the Pillar of Defense counterterrorist operation, the American firm’s officials sent a message to Israeli firms, according to Israel Defense, that although “It is true that we chose your product to answer a certain need, yet additional products were also examined, and they had to pass an internal tender.
    “Our greatest concern at this time is with the turmoil in the Middle East, and the senior management does not want to approve more suppliers from Israel. This is a bad timing, but we will keep you informed if anything changes. We have the data of the products that were discussed, should things improve and an opportunity arises.”
    The message could have been expected from a country in Europe, which has an anti-Israel bias. but having come from the United States, it triggered concerns the same conclusion could spread to other companies.
    The CEO of the unidentified Israeli company reportedly turned to the Ministry of Defense’s Defense Export and Defense Cooperation division in the US to try to convince the American company to change its mind.
    “It’s not that they cancelled a contract, but we were in negotiations for several months, and it seemed as if things were progressing properly,” the CEO was quoted as saying.
    “This response is very surprising – I might have expected to learn of such things from a company in Denmark, Belgium or Ireland, but such a response from a leading US factory is quite a slap to the face. I really hope that reconsider their policy.”

  9. justicewillprevail
    December 17, 2012, 3:52 pm

    What a farce. There is nothing to show that this is the incident it is claimed to be, or when and where this video was shot. There is an edit or glitch in it. It is absolutely unclear why he is shot. All you can see is a tussle between him and the ‘guards’, it is impossible to say with any conviction if he had a weapon or not. Whatever it is, it doesn’t fit with the varying accounts that the Israelis gave. As usual. Now they think they can release a video which proves nothing, in the hope that gullible people will take their interpretation of it. If you can see a toy pistol from this distance, in the dark, with the poor video resolution, then you have a vivid imagination, one stoked by the usual propaganda machine, a ruse which has been laughably amateur in the past. What you can see is an angry man, surrounded by soldiers who shoot him at point blank range. He may even have a gun, in which case it is a totally different incident to the one claimed. More obfuscation and confusion, very conveniently.

  10. Empiricon
    December 17, 2012, 4:35 pm

    Far too grainy to see much of anything. What we do see conflicts with the story that the IDF told that “he pulled out a gun and pointed it at the head of one of the soldiers.” Salayme looks more or less calm, swinging his bag as he waits — though perhaps understandably frustrated by the whole process as any rational human would be. But that changed in an instant after the soldier approached him, and said something to him. Salayme then starts punching. Also, I see other soldiers moving to help, but doing so quite calmly (arms swinging) as if there was no real threat. Then the heroic lioness Nofar puts the Lieberman doctrine in action: “It is unacceptable that Palestinian[s] slap and punch IDF soldiers and stay alive.”

    I guess the vaunted Israeli technology hasn’t made it to their border cameras, which seem to be have night vision technology circa 1985. Stone Age technology allows Israel to release a video that shows some level of hostility by the victim so Obsidian, dimadok et al can see what they want to. Perhaps someone can digitally enhance this to get better information.

  11. David Samel
    December 17, 2012, 5:18 pm

    There is no reason to believe that this is actually video of the Salayme killing. But suppose it is. Obviously Israel released the video to back up its claim that the killing was justified. All it shows is the Palestinian physically attacking an Israeli soldier. It offers no justification for shooting him to death. Several obvious problems:
    1. There is no gun visible in the grainy video. The IDF already had a credibility problem in claiming at different times that it was a plastic gun and a metal gun. The video appears to expose those claims as lies, rendering any other claims made inherently incredible.
    2. If the boy did have a gun that we cannot see, he had plenty of time to use it, as the fight lasted about ten seconds before the shooting began. His failure to shoot should have alerted the other soldiers that the gun was not real and posed no danger.
    3. Although the boy seems to be fighting the Israeli soldier on at least equal terms, there were two other soldiers there, and it is inconceivable that the three of them could not subdue the boy without gunfire.
    4. The firing clearly continues after the boy and the soldier are disengaged. In other words, the first shot or two has had its intended effect of saving the poor soldier, and what follows is execution-style killing of a wounded boy.
    5. The IDF has not offered any explanation for what set the boy off in the first place. Surely they must know, having had at least two or three witnesses to the moments before the fight began.
    6. The skip in the video noticed by Allison. There is no way to tell if it concealed 3 seconds, 30 seconds or three minutes of activity. Did it explain why the boy started fighting with the soldier? Who knows?
    Finally, imagine if a Jewish youth had approached a soldier and began fighting with him like that. Would he have been executed? Or would the soldiers have been able to defuse the situation without killing him? The answer is obvious.
    If a similar video had been released by the NYPD to justify the police shooting of a citizen, the officer would have been indicted.

  12. seafoid
    December 17, 2012, 5:43 pm

    Reading about the reaction to the Newtown massacre and thinking about Israel’s attitude to its Untermenschen.

    “Asking if the country had fulfilled its obligation to protect its children, he said: “The answer is no.”He added: “In the coming weeks I’ll use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens from law enforcement, mental health professionals to parents and educators in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this.”

    Gun control may be possible. Lobby control is out of the question.

  13. libra
    December 17, 2012, 5:57 pm

    I’ve just read some of the comments in English on the linked Youtube site. I have to confess that I always thought Mondoweiss only rated C grade and below hasbarists but I now realise we must be getting the cream of the crop. My apologies to all concerned.

    • andrew r
      December 18, 2012, 1:43 am

      In all honesty, Mondo’s hasbara trolls are probably the smartest out there (Although that’s really because the crudely Islamophobic ones got weeded out).

      • Mooser
        December 18, 2012, 4:21 pm

        “In all honesty, Mondo’s hasbara trolls are probably the smartest out there”

        I think I’d have to agree.
        This is the only site with the necessary ingredients to engender “not-a-Zionism” in the comments section. What other site could do that? At all the other sites, Zionist sites, if you start out by saying you’re not a Zionist, they jump all over you, call you a self-hater, anti-Semite, all that, and the discussion goes no further. But here, it’s different. And that’s why, when all the not-a-Zionists look for the origins of not-a-Zionism, they will say ‘It started at Mondoweiss, and could have happened nowhere else!’
        I think it’s going to be the next big thing (hereinafter referred to as “T.N.B.T.”) after “liberal Zionism”.

  14. Edward Q
    December 17, 2012, 5:58 pm

    I think the toy gun accusation is now the Israeli excuse for killing Palestinians. There was a similar excuse over the killing of a Gaza Palestinian. It reminds me of how U.S. soldiers would plant shovels on civilians they killed in Iraq and accuse them of being militants.

  15. DICKERSON3870
    December 17, 2012, 6:52 pm

    RE: “Also Allison Deger notes that there is a skip in the video at second 24 or so. Was something edited out? ~ Alex Kane and Phil Weiss

    MY COMMENT: How dare anyone suggest that The Most Moral Army in the World™ would ever selectively edit a video! ! !
    I have no choice but to report you guys to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). You best go ahead and “lawyer up”!

  16. Eva Smagacz
    December 17, 2012, 7:02 pm

    I wonder if a cake is at the bottom counter – the white square parcel that soldier is seen pushing away from the boy second before the attack. Mohammad is approaching the checkpoint empty handed. Did they take his cake and made him go back and wait before calling him over again into the checkpoint?

    My impression is that at video at 24 seconds the guard’s position jumps from where he checks the documents to where he is suddenly at a bottom counter.

    Poor kid. Looks like he lost his rag with bunch of killers.

  17. Sibiriak
    December 17, 2012, 7:49 pm

    How many times was the kid shot?

  18. Sibiriak
    December 17, 2012, 7:56 pm


    … pointing something at the soldier’s head and than assaulting the soldier.

    I’m not sure about that. If you are talking about his right hand, the kid proceeds to strike the soldier with that hand. It’s not clear he’s holding anything.

  19. amigo
    December 17, 2012, 8:03 pm

    Excuse me –is not the brave Israeli hero simply carrying out Lie-berman,s orders??.

    Hit an idf soldier in the face and expect to die.

    Matters not if he /she hit him /her first.

    Only Jewish Ubermenschen have value.

  20. Sibiriak
    December 17, 2012, 8:23 pm

    As the incident occurred at night, and the footage was filmed from a distance, it is not possible to see whether or not the deceased was holding a toy gun. Nevertheless, it is clear in the footage that Salima had attacked the Border Police officer before being shot.

    The video is 43 seconds long and has been edited. Salima is seen approaching the officer and speaking with him, then walking around near the guard post before attacking the police officer with his fists. It should be noted that Salima was an outstanding wrestler, who represented Palestine in various international competitions. The policewoman who saw the incident is then seen walking out of the guard post and shooting Salima.

    From the outset, the female Border Police officer testified that she had seen Salima attack the policeman and remove from his pocket a gun, which she thought was real. The video shows her version of the incident was true.

    If it is “is not possible to see whether or not the deceased was holding a toy gun” , the the video doesn’t show that all elements of her version are true.

    True or not, I don’t think it is wise of anti-Zionists to presume the story MUST be false, especially while more information is still coming in.

    All the discussion on the details of this single incident can distract from the larger picture: the oppressive nature of the Occupation and apartheid system that is the context for these kinds of incidents.

  21. ThorsteinVeblen2012
    December 17, 2012, 9:03 pm

    It doesn’t seem like a very good spot to put a surveillance camera.

  22. talknic
    December 18, 2012, 1:37 am

    The toy gun shoots real bullets …. amazing how Israeli propaganda shoots itself in the foot every time

    • andrew r
      December 18, 2012, 2:57 am

      Several people here see shots being fired by individuals other than the soldier who ran out of the building. There are some shimmering spots during the scuffle but if those are shots how do we know it’s not the first soldier?

  23. Byzantium
    December 18, 2012, 3:24 am

    Strange. I thought Israeli soldiers were all trained in Krav Maga. Between that and the Israeli numerical superiority, they should have been able to subdue the kid easily, without gunfire. Also, if he had a gun the whole time, why engage them in hand-to-hand combat at all?

  24. thankgodimatheist
    December 18, 2012, 7:27 am

    Ali Abunimah in the Electronic Intifada:
    “Video contradicts Israeli occupation soldier’s account of Hebron teen’s killing”

    Inconsistencies between video and shooter’s account

    The video does not show, as the shooter claims, a situation where the Palestinian male “grabbed the soldier’s neck and pressed against him, and with the other he put the pistol to the soldier’s temple.”

    At no point does the Palestinian male pull out a gun.

    As Chaim Levinson observes in Haaretz, “it is not possible to see whether or not the deceased was holding a toy gun.” But not only that, at no time does the “Palestinian male” have the occupation soldier “pressed” into any position. The “Palestinian male” throws a punch, and there follows a fast-moving fight.

  25. eljay
    December 18, 2012, 7:50 am

    The video doesn’t show much of anything. And the skip/cut is suspicious.

  26. iResistDe4iAm
    December 18, 2012, 11:02 am

    At 46 seconds, there is a 2 line caption in the top right hand corner of the video that temporarily obscures the Palestinian victim as the first shots are fired into him. Why couldn’t this caption be placed in the lower part of the screen where there is no activity?

    As previously noted, the video is grainy and of low quality. However, all the captions are also grainy and of low quality (in contrast to the font used in the introduction). This could imply that the captions were added to a higher quality video, which was then deliberately downgraded to a lower resolution, rendering both the video and captions grainy.

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