A soldier in the Givati Brigade was suspended from duty and placed on probation after it was learned he fired without authorization at civilians in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. The soldier was supposed to fire above civilians in an act of deterrence, but instead, fired at their legs, resulting in injuries.
The incident occurred in January, in Hamas-controlled Gaza, near the ruins of Yishuv Netzarim. The soldier fired at a group of civilians.
The investigation revealed the commander told soldiers to fire in the air to distance the approaching civilians but one soldier, acting on his own, fired at their legs. Not long after the incident, the soldier was summoned to Givati Brigade Commander Colonel Ilan Malka. He was suspended and sentenced to a suspended 50-day prison term.
In an interview appearing in this week’s IDF Bamachane magazine, Colonel Malka was asked to relate to allegations made by soldiers from the Yitzchak Rabin pre-IDF course affiliated with Oranim Academic College alleging immoral behavior. Malka, who has members of the academy in his brigade defended Givati’s actions during the Gaza operation, stating he is aware of the performance of his soldiers and stands behind them.
“As far as I know, no one from Givati fired at women and children unjustifiably”. He added there are a limited number of cases in which soldiers were held accountable for damaging property as they took over homes.
(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)