Why not Pol Pot, or Idi Amin or Slobodan Milosevic?

Alma Wood

What happened to action heroes or Ninja Turtles?

Learning parents expressing inspiration to dress their children as a war criminal for prizes as part of the Purim holiday is depressing. Dressing children with the symbology of a soldier who shot an unarmed unconscious civilian in the head is very disturbing.

The best part of the story is that the war criminal was the medic on duty that day with the entire crime video’d by witnesses.

Man of the Year 2016, Sergeant Elor Azaria of the Israeli Defense Forces, the most moral army in the world, is all of 20 years old. That he is actually a war criminal convicted of manslaughter, implying that his crime was accidental is in fact a miracle in itself. Israel hesitates to punish its soldiers with few ever brought to trial. It makes it difficult to incite members to be cruel, inhuman and unjust if the soldiers think they are going to serve prison time.

Sgt. Azaria will most likely receive a commuted sentence/pardon any day.


It has not gone unnoticed that Purim is the celebration of Jewish deliverance. This well-known story is written in the Book of Esther in the Torah or Old Testament, depending if one is Jewish or Christian.

The celebration of Purim has its origins in Esther 9:22:

“… that they should make them days of feasting and gladness, and of sending portions one to another, and gifts to the poor.”

Many customs today include gifting of food and drink, donating to charity, preparing special meals, public recitations, along with wearing of masks and costumes in public celebration. This is a joyful time, a celebratory time of survival and redemption.


To take the image of a hate- and fear-indoctrinated individual who accepts shooting an incapacitated unarmed civilian in the head is horrendously inappropriate. It is frankly child abuse to dress a child in such representative garb. With such a mindset why not dress the child as Pol Pot or Idi Amin?

But that is okay as so openly normalized in Jerusalem Online, Your link to Israel. Written by Daniel Gilenson former member of the IDF Spokesman unit, he continues the denial:

“This year for Purim, many Israeli children are dressing up as Elor Azaria, the IDF soldier convicted of manslaughter for fatally shooting a neutralized terrorist in Hebron almost a year ago. “I’m not saying that he did the right thing but in my eyes he is a hero,” stated one grandmother of such a child. “He took the initiative. His commanders weren’t around, the scene wasn’t managed properly and he took command.”

The young man twice-killed – his person and reputation – was Abdel Fattah al-Sharif, 21 years. It has yet to been ascertained that Abdel or his friend Ramzi Aziz al-Qasrawi, also 21 years actually stabbed soldiers.

However it is widely reported by witnesses that Ramzi was shot at close range, and Abdel shot twice. The second time on film in which it is clear he is not a threat to anyone.

Featured in the video above is an extrajudicial execution. The incapacitated Abdel was executed without trial for his alleged crime as he lay unconscious and bleeding.

Normalized Hate

That Azaria was the medic that day, that nobody was attending either victim is a war crime. That the soldiers standing around idly without concern… that the fatal shot fired by Azaria did not elicit any alarm is another indicator. This says exactly what occupied life is like for the indigenous Palestinian population and the Israeli soldiers who oppress them. These soldiers were not afraid nor were they wound-up with adrenaline, concern for their own safety and so forth.

The claims of knife incidents conveniently during that period helped justify the Israeli mindset the right to kill neutralize Palestinians. As to”neutralize*” knife-wielding assailants helps the social framing of Palestinians as terrorists. And there is nothing more undermining than targeting children and young people of a resistant population as well.

That no-one is questioning these incidents is concerning. The number of videos made available of knife plantings by Israelis and the Israeli army go unreported by the media. That Palestinians allegedly committing these crimes would be committing suicidal acts, contrary to their culture, faith and social instruction is neither evaluated. This indicates how normalized the world is to the Palestinians as sub-human, terroristic and deserving of their suffering. And that Israel has successfully criminalized resistance to Israeli occupation contrary to IHL and rules of armed conflict.


About Hebron:

Hebron is a city occupied by Israeli soldiers and approximately 850 illegal Israeli settlers. It is here that the indigenous Palestinian community is divided by apartheid roads, checkpoints and roadblocks so settlers may roam freely. The Israeli settler community is hostile, angry and flagrantly abusive operating aggressively and criminally with impunity. These behaviours are supported by the Israeli government and military. 220,000 Palestinians living in Hebron face daily acts of arbitrary abduction, arrest, administrative detention, apartheid, curfews, home demolitions, and misappropriation of property. Consequently these oppressive Israeli policies designed to undermine the Palestinian economy, the social environment and overall sustainability also help shut down resistance.

Why this is a war crime:

Rules of armed conflict specifically provide rules of engagement criteria that outline protected parties, including soldiers and civilians. Once these parties are injured they are to receive immediate medical care and attention. That further injuries are war crimes; extrajudicial executions are war crimes, failure to provide medical care is a war crime and so forth. That those also under occupation have the right to resist their occupiers with force is also openly denied. The Israeli lexiconology of occupation normalizes these legal violations which are widely accepted by the world.

*The term “neutralize” is a specific phrase used by Israel. It has been coined to remove the negative human response to words such as murder, manslaughter, kill, assassinate and death. This is a purposeful effort by Israel to obfuscate the law, social morality and respect for Palestinian human life. This is in fact a normalized construct of dehumanization accepted by the masses and media.

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