An appalling army experience – Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

Why is everyone so angry and appalled at this 21 year old Israeli woman? I think she is a perfect creation of a system. The fact that she sees nothing wrong with the photographs of her  smiling and proud with blindfolded humiliated Palestinian prisoners is absolute proof that it is not her but the system that has prepared her as a teenager to become an occupier, not a member of an elite army, but an occupier of civilians who must be humiliated because that is the essence of occupation. she merely said on Facebook what so many say to each other in the field now. How can we blame her for being simply an expression of a system that must corrupt her mind, not to mention punish whole populations? She is the reason that most of the world has come to hate Israel, not her personally but the system, the systemic political cowardice that guarantees generations of children like her living an apartheid that will fall apart around them one day leaving them in total shock, just as this girl is in total shock about what all the fuss is about. I feel a certain clarity emerging. This is as far away from the illusion of the Halutz as one can get, and it is not sustainable for much longer.

I only hope the young Palestinians can resist revenge because with time the change is coming. This is what Gandhi and King taught their people, it is the hardest lesson of all, but history proved both to be right, the wait was worth it. I hope and pray that as they do achieve more power there exists enough of an alliance with Jews that creates the basis for a livable two state solution, and not an opportunity for revenge for all the horror that has been visited on them. There may come a day when progressive Jews will be the only ones in a strong position to create a bridge between a wounded and angry Palestinian State and the State of Israel.

An appalling army experience

The humiliation of Palestinian detainees must not be remembered as the ‘best time’ of any soldier’s army experience.

Haaretz Editorial

Eden Aberjil doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about. The former soldier sees nothing wrong with posting photos on her Facebook profile showing her posing, grinning and amused, alongside blindfolded Palestinian detainees. “The pictures reflect the military experience,” she told Army Radio this week of her online photo album, entitled “The army: the best time of my life.”

Even more disturbing than the images – which depict the detainees as house pets – is Aberjil’s failure to understand the uproar they have caused. Whoever photographed her (other troops were likely there – it’s doubtful one soldier would be tasked with guarding all of the detainees ) also presumably saw their performance art as no more than a lark.

But Aberjil’s “experience” is reflective of a culture that has taken root over the course of decades of occupation, one which perceives Palestinian prisoners as subhuman – objects of amusement at best and at worst, abuse. It is a culture that gives rise to appalling conduct like forcing inmates to dance, sing Israeli patriotic and military songs, or photographing them as a hunter would his conquered beast. These “experiences” are no different than those of American soldiers abusing Iraqis in Abu Ghraib prison, pictures that shocked the world when exposed in 2004.

via An appalling army experience – Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News.

© Marc Gopin