In a recent video, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu slammed the new Hamas charter saying, “[Hamas] brainwashes kids inside suicide camps,” before throwing the document in a trash can. But Jonathan Ofir asks – what about the ways Israeli institutions are brainwashing children to hate Palestinians?
Category Archives: Elor Azaria
Over the weekend, an Israeli activist campaigning to pardon a soldier who shot and killed a wounded Palestinian in Hebron last year, held a costume contest for children dressed as the soldier for the Jewish holiday of Purim.
Last week, Israeli medic-soldier Elor Azarya was given an excessively lenient sentence of 1.5 years in prison for killing Abdel Fattah Al Sharif in Hebron. The military court based its conclusion in part on Azarya’s “positive personality and his being a normative person”. Yet this was the same person who wrote “kill them all” on social media as Israel considered a ceasefire with Hamas during the 2014 Gaza onslaught. This may seem to be a contradiction, but Jonathan Ofir writes the Azarya case cannot be seen as disconnected from the overall genocidal vein within Israeli society that he and his actions represent.
How did Elor Azaria’s case, shooting a Palestinian dead as he lay incapacitated in the street, drop down from murder to 18 months in prison?
An Israeli court on Tuesday sentenced Elor Azaria to 18 months in prison, one-year probation and a demotion of his military rank, a month after the Israeli soldier was found guilty of manslaughter. Azaria shot and killed Abd al-Fattah al-Sharif in March after al-Sharif had already been shot and injured following an alleged attempted stabbing attack in Hebron. The main evidence in the case was footage caught on camera by Imad Abu Shamsiya, a Palestinian resident of Hebron who tells Mondoweiss, “There is no justice for the family. They lost a member of their family in a very brutal way, this 18-month sentence is not justice for the family, for the Palestinian people or our nation — no one got justice from this.”
Benjamin Netanyahu claims Palestinians celebrate murderers and Israel does not, but grocery bag glorifying Elor Azarya proves he’s wrong. The medic who killed an incapacitated Palestinian on the ground last March is pictured with a rifle on bags given out for free at Rami Levy supermarket chain.
Israeli police and authorities have rushed to produce a ‘terrorist’ narrative of an official killing; but autopsy indicates the Israeli teacher Yacoub Abu Al-Qia’an was executed at Umm al-Hiran village last week and left bleeding for twenty minutes when there were medical vehicles at hand. “They murdered him not once, but several times,” his brother Ahmed says.
Based on the responses he has received it is clear that Jonathan Ofir’s latest article questioning the whole label of “terror” touched a raw nerve with Israelis and Israel supporters. Ofir asks, what is that nerve really? And why is it so offensive?
The United Kingdom has Brexit. The United States, an incoming president Trump. And Israel now has Elor Azaria. It may not have the same ring, but ultimately the turning point could prove as decisive. Jonathan Cook writes, “The soldier’s trial, far from proof of the rule of law, was the last gasp of a dying order.”
Emad Abu Shamsiyah first started receiving death threats in March, after a video he filmed for Israeli rights group B’Tselem, which captured Israeli soldier Elor Azaria shooting dead Abed al-Fattah al-Sharif, 21, was released to the public. Now, the manslaughter ruling against Azaria has translated into anger among Israeli settlers and Shamsiyah cannot walk the streets of his neighborhood without fearing for his life. “It was already bad before, but after the court ruling, all these threats started to come in through my Facebook, telling me I will die and that people want to murder me,” Shamsiyah tells Mondoweiss.
Yoav Litvin writes: The Elor Azaria case was the ultimate trial of Israeli society. A disastrous precedent has now been set: cold-blooded murder of Palestinians has been officially sanctioned by the Israeli mainstream and the political class, and the perceived rule of law severely undermined. This precedent will further solidify the complete dehumanization of Palestinians and pave the way for further ethnic cleansing and genocide in the occupied Palestinian territories.
One possible consequence of the Azaria verdict is that will help protect Israel from international accountability. Yonah Jeremy Bob writes in the Jerusalem Post: “At the ICC, Hebron shooter Elor Azaria’s manslaughter conviction may affirm the credibility of Israel’s apparatus for prosecuting its own soldiers. This is important because it is the decisive issue affecting whether the ICC will dive deeper into the Israeli- Palestinian conflict.”
The Israeli military court ruling which found Sgt. Elor Azaria guilty of manslaughter in the killing of Abed al-Fattah al-Sharif has revealed long-simmering fissures in Israeli society that, according to experts, point to a growing anti-democratic trend in the country and reinforce the lack of accountability for Palestinians within the Israeli justice system.
Sgt Azaria is convicted of manslaughter in Hebron killing of March 24, 2016. Human rights organization B’Tselem says Palestinians are killed all the time by Israeli security forces and there is no accountability. New York Times and Washington Post leave this angle out.
Netanyahu’s most impressive achievement is that he has associated his politics and even himself personally with sacred Jewish history and its hallowed lessons. That is why Jimmy Carter and now John Kerry must be vilified for pointing out the apartheid treatment of Palestinians. Netanyahu’s sacred construction is about to crash to the ground. Jeffrey Goldberg has already jumped ship.
The real struggle in Israeli leadership is not Netanyahu cowering before settlers, but who can control a sacred ethnocentric discourse of Jewish persecution and innocence in the face of alleged Palestinian Jew-hatred. Jeffrey Goldberg has propagated that discourse in the U.S. The inevitable conviction of army medic Elor Azaria on manslaughter charges next month represents a crisis for that discourse at last.
Why do media bystanders shut their mouths when they see critics of Israel smeared as “diseased” anti-Semites. Because of hasbara culture, a Jewish-Zionist ethnocentric way of looking at the world that is both aggressive and highly politicized.
Warnings of a civil war among Jews in Israel reflect the divide over the manslaughter trial of Elor Azaria, with Israeli generals determined to prosecute the medic. The generals want Benjamin Netanyahu gone; and a comment by Jeffrey Goldberg indicates that the Prime Minister may have lost an important American ally.
A video of the March 24 killings of two Palestinians in Hebron after an alleged attack on an Israeli soldier shows a soldier kicking a knife in the street closer to the incapacitated form of one of the alleged assailants, Abd asl Fatah al-Sharif. The group Human Rights Defenders released the video.
During his trial for murdering a Palestinian in Hebron, Elor Azaria’s defense team has cast doubts on the video shot by Imad Abu Shamsiyah showing the execution. The opinion of an expert from the DIFS (Division of Identification and Forensic Science) says that B’Tselem’s videos are authentic.
The notorious execution of Abd al-Fatah a-Sharif in a Hebron street on March 24 by Israeli medic Elor Azaria was preceded by the execution of a second Palestinian man, Ramzi al-Qasrawi, also accused of attacking an Israeli soldier, according to an explosive new report from B’Tselem.
The lawyers representing the IDF medic who is charged in the killing of a wounded Palestinian in Hebron in March called yesterday for the return to Israel of Abdel Fattah al-Sharif’s body, which was released on Friday and buried by his family in Hebron on Saturday
The episode since Israeli medic-soldier Elor Azarya was filmed summarily executing Abd Al-Fattah Al-Sharif in Hebron has been a sobering reminder of the right-wing’s total and long-standing dominance in Israel. Dan Cohen explains what the aftermath of the murder tells us about Israeli society and what we can expect next.