[YeshGvul] 5 conscripts jailed for refusal

From cherryk@zahav.net.il Fri Apr 26 16:23:49 2002
Date: Thu, 25 Apr 2002 22:46:55 +0200
From: peretz kidron 
To: YeshGvul@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [YeshGvul] 5 conscripts jailed for refusal
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Five IDF regulars (conscripts) have received jail sentences for refusal
to take part in the campaign of repression against the Palestinian
On April 24, Corp. Alon Sela (Kochav Ya'ir) of an artillery unit was
sentenced to 28 days for refusal to serve in the Hebron area.  He
declared: "Service in the occupied territories causes me moral conflicts
I'm unable to handle. I don't know how others handle them."
On April 25, four additional conscripts got similar sentences after
refusing, each in turn, to serve as guards at the Ktzi'ot ("Ansar 3")
prison camp - recently reopened to hold hundreds of Palestinians detained
during the recent IDF offensive in Palestinian towns and villages:
Sgt. Shay Biran (Hod Hasharon) - combat medic (Military ID: 6994014)
Sgt. Yiftah Admoni (Hod Hasharon) (ID: 6961658)
Sgt. Alon Dror (Kfar Saba) (ID: 7014088)
Sgt. Tomer Friedman (Kfar Saba) (ID: 6993743) - combat medic
All four serve in the Nahal brigade, which consists mainly of youth
movement graduates.  Before enlisting, they volunteered a "service year"
devoted to youth work.  Biran and Friedman had previously seen active
combat duty in the occupied territories.
Each of the soldiers defended his decision in detail, here are some
selected passages (the full Hebrew texts will soon be on our website
Biran: "I am no longer willing to take an active part in the violent,
needless and immoral policy conducted by my government...  The [Israeli]
occupier has been applying consistent violence and a policy of repression
for 35 years, while yet excising it from the public consciousness, and
people don't understand that [Palestinian] violence is in fact
counter-violence.  .. If I were to go to the territories, I'd be
contributing to the state's destruction (not merely moral, but above all,
concrete and tangible); by refusing, I am trying to save the state from
self-destructing." Recalling the Palestinian bombing in Kfar Saba, near
his home, Biran adds: "If I go to Ramallah, I'd be killing my own family.
It's not just Arabs I care about, but those near me... Those who'll die
because of a stupid, cynical and callous policy. This isn't a defensive
war, it's our calamity...There's no future to this war, it must end
because there's no victory in it."
Admoni: "Perpetuation of the occupation will take Israel to its end,
moral and perhaps even physical... A policy that sacrifices the lives of
the state's soldiers and citizens for the sake of territory and political
calculation (refusal to dismantle settlements) and elects to oppress and
imprison 3.5 million people, isn't democratic. As a soldier, I am
expected to carry out this policy that contradicts democratic values, and
therefore, by opposing that policy, I am defending democracy. ... The
Palestinians' daily existence has become so intolerable that
they're ready to kill themselves to change matters - that's the action of
people with no hope, and I'm not willing to serve an army that
perpetuates this situation."
Dror: "I've been a combat soldier for a year and a half, I went wherever
I was told, but I refuse to go along any further with Israel's occupation
policy, or take responsibility for its results. I call upon any other
soldier required to help in the occupation, to act like me. On top of the
moral damage the occupation inflicts upon the occupier, the occupation
itself - the ongoing assault on the Palestinians and their human rights -
doesn't merely bring us no security, rather, it creates the next
generation of terrorists, people who have nothing to lose ... I am bound
to oppose these actions. I'm bound to adopt disobedience towards the
government; it's not just that I'm not bound by the law, I am bound,
morally, to flout it. .. I don't see this as an act of treason; rather,
it's a step aimed at saving the state, even if I must pay a personal
We will publish Friedman's letter in our next circular.
The imprisonment of these five is most significant !  They are not the
first young (18-20) conscripts to refuse duties in the campaign of
repression. Others have done so in the past. But their 3-year
service places them under much stricter discipline than reservists called
in for a few weeks, and few have the maturity and self-confidence to face
up to the ordeal they can expect from their superiors until their
discharge.  The spread of the refusal movement to the conscript units
marks a notable breakthrough.
Meeting point: Bet Oren turn-off, the old Haifa-Hedera highway
Transportation: Jerusalem (Binyanei Haumma) 1:30
Tel Aviv (Rakevet Tzafon - Arlozorov/Namir) 2:45
There will be transport from the vigil to the TEL AVIV PEACE
MARCH (7:00)
Peretz Kidron - Ram Rahat
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