Gantz to rule on fate of officer who struck activist (JERUSALEM POST) By YAAKOV KATZ 04/18/12)
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IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz will decide in the coming
days whether the senior officer who slammed his M16 in the face of a
European protester in the West Bank will be allowed to remain in
On Tuesday, OC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Nitzan Alon presented the
findings from his investigation against Lt.-Col. Shalom Eisner to
Gantz, who requested a number of days to review the material before
announcing his decision.
Eisner was suspended from his post on Sunday after he was caught on
tape slamming an M16 rifle in the face of a Danish activist in the
Gantz is expected to decide either to order Eisner’s discharge from
the IDF for his actions or to assign him to another post. The
incident took place on Saturday during a pro-Palestinian
demonstration on Road 90 in the Jordan Valley.
Eisner was a candidate to become the next deputy commander of the
Bahd 1 Officers Training School.
Based on preliminary findings from the investigation into the
incident, the commander of the Jordan Valley Brigade – who was on
leave due to the Passover holiday – had ordered units in the area to
call in police forces to assist in dispersing the demonstration which
was blocking traffic on Road 90.
Eisner reportedly decided to try to clear the road on his own with
just a dozen or so soldiers.
Channel 10 aired a recording of a conversation with Eisner in which
he questioned the IDF’s decision to suspend him and asked “What is
more important? To fulfill the mission or to look good on camera?”
Eisner admitted that he might have made a mistake but argued that the
demonstrators attacked him. Medical documents, the news channel
revealed, backed up his claim that his hand had been fractured that
“It is true that some of the pictures look bad but in the end I used
my weapon as a bat,” he said. “No one was killed and I did not put
anyone’s life in danger.”
Defense Minister Ehud Barak claimed Tuesday that the incident was
isolated and does not reflect the IDF.
“We are talking about a grave, but isolated case, which does not in
any way characterize the behavior of the IDF’s soldiers or
commanders,” he said. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post 04/18/12)
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