New Publication: Children and Youth - Soldier Testimonies 2005-2011
On your first arrest mission, you’re sure it’s a big deal, and it’s actually bullshit. You enter the Abu Sneina (Hebron) neighborhood and pick up three children. After that whole briefing, you’re there with your bulletproof vest and helmet and stuck with that ridiculous mission of separating women and children. It’s all taken so seriously and then what you end up with is a bunch of kids, you blindfold and shackle them and drive them to the police station at Givat Ha’avot. That’s it, it goes on for months and you eventually stop thinking there are any terrorists out there, you stop believing there’s an enemy, it’s always some children or adolescents or some doctor we took out. You never know their names, you never talk with them, they always cry, shit in their pants.
From testimony #2, Children and Youth - Soldier Testimonies 2005-2011
This week we published a new booklet, Children and Youth – Soldier Testimonies 2005-2011, incorporating testimonies from more than thirty IDF soldiers who served in the West Bank and in and around the Gaza Strip in recent years. The testimonies in this anthology illuminate the realities of everyday life for Palestinian children and youth who live under Israeli occupation, facing an impossible reality of constant friction with military forces, arrests, violence and abuse.
Although the events described here took place after the peak of the Second Intifada, at a time perceived as calm and uneventful from a ‘security’ standpoint, the reality that emerges from the testimonies shows that harsh treatment of Palestinian children continues unabated, and despite the overall security situation.
With the publication of this booklet, we call on Israeli society and its leaders to open a real discussion on the moral price paid for military control in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and on the facts that form this reality and dictate our future.
The full booklet can be downloaded on our website and one of the testimonies can be seen in special picture form on our Facebook page.
Articles on our new booklet also appeared in the following international publications:
The Sydney Morning Herald