Israeli Soldier Admits Murdering Palestinian Civilians Was A “Pre-Planned Act Of Revenge”

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Former Israeli military commander and Breaking the Silence researcher Eran Efrati has posted a statement to Facebook on his talks with IDF soldiers in Gaza, and reveals the deliberate killing of Palestinians by sniper fire in Shuja’iyya neighborhood as punishment for the death of soldiers in their units.

Efrati states:

“In recent weeks I was on the border of Gaza and getting reports from soldiers in the Gaza Strip who leak information out to me. I am in the process of publication of two big stories in major U.S. newspapers, but there are some things I can share with you right now: Soldiers in two different units inside Gaza leaked information about the murdering of Palestinians by sniper fire in Shuja’iyya neighborhood as punishment for the death of soldiers in their units.

After the shooting on the Israeli armored personnel carriers, which killed seven soldiers of the Golani Brigade, the Israeli army carried out a massacre in Shuja’iyya neighborhood. A day after the massacre, many Palestinians came to search for their relatives and their families in the rubble. In one of the videos uploaded to YouTube, a young Palestinian man Salem Shammaly calls the names of his family and looking for them between the ruins when he is suddenly shot at in his chest and falls down. A few seconds after that, there are two additional shootings from snipers into his body, killing him instantly. Since the video was released, there was no official response from the IDF spokesperson.

Today I can report that the official command that was handed down to the soldiers in Shujaiyya was to capture Palestinian homes as outposts. From these posts, the soldiers drew an imaginary red line, and amongst themselves decided to shoot to death anyone who crosses it. Anyone crossing the line was defined as a threat to their outposts, and was thus deemed a legitimate target. This was the official reasoning inside the units.

I was told that the unofficial reason was to enable the soldiers to take out their frustrations and pain at losing their fellow soldiers (something that for years the IDF has not faced during its operations in Gaza and the West Bank), out on the Palestinian refugees in the neighborhood. Under the pretext of the so-called “security threat” soldiers were directed to carry out a pre-planned attack of revenge on Palestinian civilians. These stories join many other similar ones that Amira Hass and I investigated in Operation Cast Lead.”

The Israeli assault on Gaza has no claimed over 1,000 Palestinian civilians.¬† The UN’s latest report spells out the massacre in cold, hard numbers:

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Israel continues its assault, littering the Gaza strip with broken bodies and broken hearts.

Below is the footage of Israeli snipers killing Palestinian Salem Shammaly as he searches the rubble for relatives, flanked  by medics and international volunteers.