MembersWhen Self-Consciousness Endangers Our Instincts

The very characteristics for which many in the West praise Israeli soldiers are cause for scorn among Palestinians.

By Aviel Schneider |
Photo: Flash90

Over-exaggerated restraint by Israeli soldiers is in the eyes of the Arab world pure idiocy. And Israel’s military has been falling into this trap with increasing frequency. Rather than seeking praise (and engendering ridicule), Israel must more carefully consider her own needs and interests. But with the rise of smartphone technology, this is becoming more and more difficult. And the Palestinians are very aware of this.

Nowadays, smartphone cameras are the most effective weapon the Palestinians have in their conflict with Israel. Almost all encounters between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers are video recorded. Any behavior by the soldiers deemed inappropriate is immediately broadcast around the world via social media. For the Palestinians, this is a propaganda jackpot.

For Israeli soldiers, it’s a trap. The situation is unsettling for our young soldiers, making it difficult for them to execute split-second decisions. The fear of being taken to court results in confusion and paralyses their instincts. I’ve lost count of the number of soldiers who’ve complained to me in recent years that their security duties amongst the Palestinian civilian population have...

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