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Text testimonies If a Palestinian looked at him the wrong way – he’d beat him up
catalog number: 816614
Rank: First Sergeant
Unit: Lavi Battalion
Area: Hebron area
period: 2002 - 2003
categories:
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If a Palestinian looked at him the wrong way – he’d beat him up
Rank: First Sergeant
Unit: Lavi Battalion
Area: Hebron area
period: 2002 - 2003

I had one deputy company commander who was religious. Every weekend he stayed on base, I mean, he’d actually be the commander, so he’d enter Yatta to look for stolen cars. He’d take the jeep and his front command team and the patrol jeep, and enter the town to look for stolen cars. He’d take them out to Tel Zif, there was an army outpost there, every Saturday. Well, maybe not every Saturday, say twice a month, once a month, he’d take out three, four, ten cars. And he was really really really less patient with the Palestinians. As I said before, there were guys who were more patient and guys who were less patient on the command staff, too. If a Palestinian looked at him the wrong way – he’d beat him up. We were in the middle of a village, there was this one car, from a kibbutz, it was a Renault Megane, it had the number and name of the kibbutz on it, I don’t remember which kibbutz. He came along and the whole lock in the car door was gone. You take a look inside, no ignition, just wires, it’s being started with wires. It was parked in front of a house. A guy was on the porch. The officer went into the house and brought the guy out: “Okay, give me the keys”. “It’s not my car, what do you want?” “We want to take the car, get in, drive.” “No, it’s not mine.” “Get in the car.” “No.” So bam bam bam, hitting, kicking, he ended up hitting him quite a lot. I told him: “Listen, let him go.” Okay, he let him go. By the way, at that point, he told his communications guy to break the window and get into the car. He managed to start the car, but – this is the absurd part, right? – as soldiers we’re not allowed to drive, to take the car ourselves. A Palestinian has to take it. But is it okay to beat him up and threaten him so that he’ll drive, yeah? So we stopped an Israeli vehicle passing by, they were Arab Israelis. It was in Area A (under Palestinian Authority control), they’re not allowed to be there, so they were kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. And so were we, we couldn’t touch them and they knew it, but they were in a forbidden area. So he told them: “Right, you get into this car and drive.” “No, I don’t want to”. More hitting. Finally he agreed, and we got the car to the army post. In the end, we agreed to bring him back to the village. On the way back, when we dropped him off at the post, he started swearing at us. Something like that.

Who, the Palestinian?The Arab Israeli. An Israeli citizen, blue ID. So he was dumped right there on the road. What road? Between Susya and Hebron. We let him off about five-six kilometers from where we’d picked him up. After that, I actually complained to the company commander because, that whole thing, the deputy broke some rules. You're not allowed to beat people up, that whole business of using force, the whole thing where he supposedly took a civilian hostage, right? The whole thing with breaking into a car, ordering a soldier to break its window. I complained to the company commander and said: This is all out of line. The commander said: Okay, I’ll look into it. Did anything happen? No.