Last month, the IDF sent 40 of its bravest, strongest ‘Davids’ on a dangerous mission deep in the heart of enemy territory. Everyone who participated was a volunteer because their commanders knew there was a high likelihood some or none would return alive. Each was heavily armed in order to permit him to handle anything the enemy might throw at them. They headed out in the dark of night, wary of the least sound signalling an ambush by enemy forces, who could be hiding anywhere waiting to pounce. They arrived at the target location, a heavily armed fortress swarming with guards prepared to defend their commander to the last.
Naturally, our brave lads overcame all opposition and burst into the terror den and found their quarry, the enemy commander who Shin Bet intelligence had identified as a serial bomber who’d killed scores of Israelis in well-planned terror operations. As they burst into his lair, they found him preparing the latest explosive device which he had planned to explode deep in the heart of the Zionist entity, where it would kill even more of the hated Jewish colonists.
They overpowered him despite fierce resistance. Several soldiers dragged him from his lair, others battered him with rifle butts into unconsciousness. That was the last any of his Palestinian followers saw of him. God knows what the soldiers did to him after the terrorist left their sight. The next day, they weren’t surprised to learn that their beloved commander had died in the custody of the Zionist enemy.
The entire scenario above is fictional. You might even call it a lie, for reasons you’ll see below. A slightly overstated version of what actually happened to a Palestinian recently. Except that he wasn’t a terror commander. He wasn’t holed up in a fortress and he didn’t offer any resistance. Here is the real scenario as reported by Palestinian and Israeli media along with a well-informed Israeli security source:
The Shin Bet identified Mohammad Rimawi, age 24, for suspected involvement in “terror activities.” Given how wide the net that Israeli security forces cast, this could mean anything from planting a Palestinian flag on a flag pole, to throwing stones at soldiers, to planning a terror attack. The likelihood is that the threat he offered was exceedingly low. But overwhelming force is the modus operandi for the IDF. They enter a village in the dead of night, fire flash grenades, terrorize the neighborhood, smash in the door of the victim’s home, wake him with shouts, curses and rifle butts. They trash rooms, break furniture, overturn beds. It’s a sort of calling card, IDF-style. Then they hustle him off to the nearest Shin Bet interrogation site where he is both questioned and tortured until he admits whatever imaginary or real crime he may have committed; and informs on all of his comrades in his life of terror.
That’s the way the arrest is supposed to happen. But that night it didn’t. The soldiers burst into Rimawi’s bedroom where, according to his family, he slept in his bed-clothes. They dragged him by the feet along the floor, kicking and slamming their rifle butts into his head as they took him to a jeep and transported him to the detention facility. But in this case, they roughed him up worse than normal. The blows they rained down on him actually killed him. He was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.
After his death, the IDF called their PA security counterparts and asked them to try to find any health defects Rimawi might have suffered so they could blame his frail health for his death. Unfortunately, the family responded that he was in excellent health. That complicated things a bit for those Israeli Davids.
Then they brought the body to the Abu Kabir forensic lab where autopsies are performed on Palestinians murdered by Israeli forces. This is the infamous facility whose director used to harvest organs of Palestinians and Israelis and sell them. Given this sort of abysmal medical track record, what would you expect to happen in this case?
Of course, the army tells us that Abu Kabir found not a single mark on Rimawi’s body and determined that he couldn’t possibly have died of a beating. Even worse, the IDF claimed a Palestinian pathologist was present at the autopsy and confirmed the findings.
In actuality, a Palestinian pathologist (the news report does not indicate if it was the same medical figure at the autopsy or not) said otherwise:
Arimawi’s family rejected the army’s findings. His brother Bashir told Haaretz that according to the information the family had been given by a Palestinian pathologist, Arimawi had been struck in the chest and elsewhere on his body.
The Israelis held his body for thirteen days and only returned it after demands from the Palestinian prisoner rights NGO, Adameer. Rimawi’s funeral is today. He is the third Palestinian killed in Israeli custody this year.
For the sheltered and naïve among you, dear readers, this is not the first or even the tenth time the IDF has engaged in such a charade. They lie regularly in order to cover their asses. Some overeager 18 year olds, eager to win favor of his commander, or just hoping to make a name for himself as the roughest and toughest of the lot, got carried away. They beat Rimawi to a pulp and killed him. Now they have to scurry like rats to repair the damage. Well, not exactly ‘repair’ since you can’t bring a murder victim back to life. More like obscure the entire episode in so much smoke and bullshit that no one can tell what happened. And all the stories and counter stories will cancel each other out. That’s what the IDF hopes. And that’s what we here try to prevent.
The IDF is perpetrating a monstrous lie. In a day or a week details will drift out. First will come claims that Rimawi had a heart condition. That he suffered from this or that infirmity that was what really killed him. After an IDF sniper blew a third of the skull off Ahed Tamimi’s cousin, they had the temerity to claim he’s had a “bike accident!” Israeli police claimed that Mohammed Abukhdeir, who was brutally incinerated by Israeli settler terrorists, was murdered in a family honor killing because he was gay.
The Rimawi family will refute each lie one by one. Gradually the IDF will retreat into a corner, not entirely admitting its guilt. Perhaps there will be an investigation. A thorough one of course to get to the bottom of what happened. Maybe if they’re really embarrassed they’ll even say lessons will be learned. But likely they won’t even say that because that’s a stratagem they use as a last resort, if they really screwed up and have to look like they care.
But rest assured, there is truth. There is justice. We stand against the lies of the Israeli Occupation. We call them liars to their faces. So go ahead Lt. Cols. Peter Lerner and Jonathan Conricus: lie your way out of this one.