By John Ballard
Israel is having a tough time these days.
The incriminating UN report on last years Flotilla misadventure, restless citizens at home, and now this. Occupation of the Territories: Israeli Soldiers� Testimonies 2000-2010 has been in print since last December, but a French publication brings up this dirty linen by way of embellishing the story. (H/T Joseph Dana)
� Je vais vous dire quand j�ai vraiment flipp�On �it en train d�intervenir �aza ; on se trouvait dans une tranch�et des enfants se sont approch�et ont commenc� nous lancer des pierres. Les instructions stipulaient que lorsqu�il [un Palestinien] se trouve dans un p�m�e o�peut nous toucher avec une pierre, il peut aussi nous atteindre avec une grenade ; alors je lui ai tir�essus. Il devait avoir entre 12 et 15 ans. Je ne pense pas l�avoir tu�j�essaie de m�en persuader pour avoir l�esprit tranquille, pour mieux dormir la nuit. J�ai flipp�orsque, pris de panique, je suis venu raconter �es amis et �a famille que j�avais vis�uelqu�un et que je lui avais tir�ans la jambe, dans le derri�. Ils �ient tout contents : je suis devenu un h�s, et ils ont tout racont� la synagogue. Moi, j��is en �t de choc. �
"I'll tell you when I really freaked out. It was about to intervene in Gaza, it was in a trench and children approached and began throwing rocks. The instructions stipulated that when [a Palestinian] is in an area where it can touch us with a stone, it can also reach us with a grenade, so I shot him. He must have been between 12 and 15. I do not think the killing, trying to persuade me to have peace of mind to sleep better at night. I freaked out when, panicked, I came to tell my friends and my family that I referred someone and I had shot in the leg in the back. They were all happy: I became a hero, and they all told the synagogue. Me, I was in shock."
Occupation of the Territories is a collection of testimonies of soldiers and soldiers serving or having served in various units of the Israeli army in the West Bank and Gaza since the beginning of the second Intifada in 2000. This is by far the most comprehensive book on the modus operandi of Israel in the occupied territories. It contains no revelations about the decisions taken at the highest level or behind the scenes, but elements of the reality of daily raw and military control over the homes and fields of the Palestinians, on their streets and roads, property and time, life and death of every person in the West Bank and Gaza.
As if that's not enough, the final (unredacted) Wikileaks dump includes that aweful "We don't do Gandhi well" quote.
Further comments from me will not add much.
Like watching a cat tossed into the air we will have to wait to see if she lands on her feet once again.