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update deskIsrael-Palestinian Conflict

IDF soldiers punished for praising terrorists on social media

Bedouin and Druze soldiers recorded a video lauding Palestinian gunmen based in Jenin.

IDF vehicles during a fight with terrorists in Jenin, June 19, 2023. Photo by Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90.
IDF vehicles during a fight with terrorists in Jenin, June 19, 2023. Photo by Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90.

The Israel Defense Forces arrested several Bedouin and Druze soldiers who posted a video they had created praising Jenin-based terrorists.

On Wednesday, four soldiers were sentenced to 30 days’ detention and a fifth soldier was sentenced to 21 days’ detention. The issue of their continued service in the army will be examined at a later date.

“Following the inappropriate statements of the IDF soldiers in the video, the soldiers were arrested last night and an IDF investigation was opened, at the end of which its findings will be submitted to the Military Advocate General’s office for examination,” the army said. “Their conduct is contrary to IDF values and they will be dealt with disciplinarily.”

“Long live Palestine, long live Jenin. Long live the God of Palestine and Israel go to hell!” the soldiers, who serve in the Logistics Corps, say in the video.

Other troops can be heard laughing in the background and offering support.

Israeli helicopter gunships struck targets in the Jenin area on Monday morning after a deadly gun battle erupted during an IDF counterterror raid in the city.

As Israeli forces withdrew from the city with two wanted suspects in custody, a roadside bomb detonated next to an armored vehicle, wounding eight soldiers.

The Israeli airstrike, the first in Judea and Samaria since the Second Intifada in the early 2000s, allowed the military to extricate the wounded.

There are increasing calls within the government to carry out a large-scale offensive in northern Samaria to root out Palestinian terrorist groups.

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant paid a hospital visit on Tuesday to soldiers wounded in battle the previous day in Jenin, warning that “all options are on the table” to defeat Palestinian terrorism.

“I instructed the defense establishment to take proactive and offensive actions wherever there is a danger to the lives of our citizens and our forces,” said Gallant.

“We will act in any necessary way and reach anywhere in order to preserve our freedom of action. All options are on the table,” he said.

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