Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East.
(From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Friday, 4 April 2014

"My Experience Taught Me That Even During Wartime, Israel Made It A Priority To Meet The Needs Of Palestinians": A former IDF officer tears through a "Breaking The Silence" speaker's tissue of lies

"I couldn’t understand why the speaker was being praised that night. I couldn’t understand why someone who was dedicated to misrepresenting Israel and its moral character was given credibility.... 

[The speaker] claimed that Israeli soldiers are trained to oppress the Palestinians individually and as a people, that they maliciously mistreat Palestinians in the West Bank, and that they are taught to make Palestinians fear Israeli soldiers. He argued that there are no civil rights for Palestinians and that the Jewish people who now have a state use their power to oppress Palestinians.

The organizers said they love Israel. But by praising lies and misinformation, they made it clear that their “loving Israel” is only an empty façade.'

That's how a former officer in the IDF (code of ethics here) has characterised a "Breaking the Silence" (for the lowdown on this group see here) lecture at Washington University in St Louis by a former IDF soldier on 31 March, an event co-sponsored by St Louis Hillel and J Street U.  No questioning or dialogue was permitted by the organisers.
 'As an Israeli reservist who had been stationed in the West Bank, I sat in disbelief as the speaker described attitudes and policies that were entirely divorced from reality....
I had no idea what he was talking about or what motivated him to lie.
He did not describe the Israel or IDF that I know so intimately.
As a reservist and a soldier, I had been stationed in the West Bank. My job was to protect the Palestinians’ human rights, coordinate humanitarian aid, and tend to the needs of civilians living in the West Bank. I always felt that Israel’s concern for the welfare of the Palestinians was impressive, and I was proud to be part of it.
My experience taught me that even during wartime, Israel made it a priority to meet the needs of Palestinians even though they had made themselves enemies of the State of Israel by launching the second intifada.
I recall that during my service in Hebron, I had to adhere to international humanitarian law and ensure that the soldiers in the Judea Brigade were educated about the Geneva Convention and the rules of engagement—or face punishment. We sometimes went beyond these strict rules to help Palestinians. Once, when I served in my unit’s headquarters, we arranged a complex operation so that my unit, with the help of another unit, could save the life of a Palestinian boy living in Gaza whose mother had died. We did some investigating, and discovered that his uncle lived in Ramallah. In a special operation in the middle of the night, we moved the child to his uncle so that he would not be left alone in the streets of the Gaza Strip.
It was torture for me to sit there quietly and listen to the distortions of this former soldier who had served during the most violent period of the second intifada (2000-2003), when suicide bombers and snipers were wantonly murdering Israeli men, women, and children. But he never described the terrorism that forced the IDF to take measures to protect our families....
 He went on making outlandish claims. He said the IDF is actually an anti-Zionist army because it operates in the West Bank. He added that there is no more terrorism today, so Israel had no reason for its security measures. He apparently forgot why there are dramatically fewer terror attacks today, or maybe he just didn’t want to mention that it might be because of Israel’s heightened security.
.... He claimed the Palestinians have no security forces—even though they do, and my unit worked closely with those forces on a daily basis. The speaker either did not know, or was told to say that.
I worked almost five years to protect civilians, human lives, and their dignity in the West Bank. I spent the most important years of my life to make sure the IDF protects human rights and lives up to the Geneva Conventions, to protect my army and my people. Yet this speaker, in a matter of 45 minutes, invalidated my entire military service, accusing me of the very things that I worked so hard to prevent....
If he has complaints about the IDF, he should be an activist in Israel. Soldiers don’t always do the right thing or live up to the IDF code. They should be disciplined. Israel’s policies can be debated. But Israel is constantly examining itself critically, and debates in Israel are energetic and promote the full variety of views. Why, then, would he come to the U.S. to complain about his own army?....  I wondered what kind of twisted thinking would make a person who lives in a vibrant democracy, where he can campaign for his political positions, instead ask outside forces to pressure his country? What motivated him? Is he a post-nationalist who doesn’t want Israel to exist at all?'
Read more here
For the IDF's many humanitarian missions see here

11 comments:

  1. The "Read more" link at the bottom doesn't work :(

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    1. Thanks! Hope it's OK now. This is it:
      http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/breaking-silence-j-street-u-continue-promotion-event-hillel-hous...

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  2. He can write all he wants, but as long as the Jewish community allows funding for BtS then our children are going to be subject to lies. Heck now the UJA in NY is goig to allow "Jewish" groups who support BDS into the Salute to Israel Parade.When at these antiIsrael events they don't even allow opposing viewpoints it just shows how idiotic the Jewish diaspora happens to be.

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  3. "Breaking the Silence" is an extreme leftist NGO that seeks the destruction of Israel as a Jewish State. It was set up to exploit the 'experiences' of anti-Zionist Israelis who had been in the IDF and use it for propaganda to accuse Israel of war crimes. Most of the 'personal stories' have turned out to be either completely made up or grossly exaggerated. Yet because it is "Israeli" the organisation has a devastating impact in places like the UK. For a start, naive Jewish (and even Zionist) organisations invite them to give talks because they have no idea of what they really stand for. I know of several friends who have gone to their events not even realising that they have been subjected to two hours of anti-Israel propaganda (they assume what they are being told is all true because t comes from Israelis). Breaking the Silence have even turned to dramatizing their 'stories'. For example, friends were chuffed to tell us they had been to see an Israeli production "Ballard for the Burning Star" at the Edinburgh Festival in August. It turns out that this play is based on the writer's work with Breaking the Silence.

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  4. Hmmm, so we are to believe a former IDF officer based solely on his words. That's not my understanding of what "tearing through a tissue of lies" means. For the latter action, you need to present some proof.

    My experience taught me that even during wartime, Israel made it a priority to meet the needs of Palestinians even though they had made themselves enemies of the State of Israel by launching the second intifada.

    In the "neighbor procedure", IDF soldiers use Palestinian civilians (sometimes as young as eleven) to protect themselves, be it by placing the civilians in front of their armored vehicles so that they won't be stoned or by ordering them to go into a terrorist's house and call on him to surrender. I don't see how this can be squared with the notion of "meeting the Palestinians' needs." I would rather call it using the Palestinians as human shields.

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    1. I'm sure even a dedicated bigot like Alberto Miyara knows that using the "neighbor procedure" is banned and leads to the deaths of terrorists. So it's win win.

      ‘Human shield’ procedure banned
      "Procedure used by IDF to apprehend terror suspects, by instructing Palestinian civilians to knock on their door and ask them to surrender, is illegal and violates international law, three-judge High Court panel rules Thursday"
      http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3151383,00.html

      IDF kills Hamas men who murdered 4 Israelis in August
      "The IDF was aware that the large building housed three extended families, and soldiers used loudspeakers to call for everyone to leave the premises.
      Twenty people – men, women and children – came out.
      "Security forces denied a request by the building’s owner to go inside in order to convince Natshe to surrender, in line with a High Court of Justice ban on sending Palestinian civilians into battle zones."
      http://www.jpost.com/Israel/IDF-kills-Hamas-men-who-murdered-4-Israelis-in-August

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    2. In his guise of IbRahim bin Yusuf he left a really despicable comment overnight which I felt compelled to reject - its gist was that Israelis should not avail themselves of medical/technological improvements he identified as coming from Nazi Germany.

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  5. oh wow. The ONE photo you could find of an exception you posted, and the millions of photos of occupation soldiers kicking children, beating them, arresting them, locking them in cages around their homes to reduce the violence of settlers, beating their parents in front of their eyes and standing by and watching as settlers attack them and burn their homes, and mosques and orchards and attacking them if they try to defend themselves, you fail to post any of that? How honest.

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