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2007 Hebron market eviction Photo: Eli Mendelbaum
2007 Hebron market eviction Photo: Eli Mendelbaum
 
 

SOS Israel under investigation for refusnik prize

Organization that rewarded soldiers for refusing orders to evict Jewish families in Hebron to be investigated by police for incitement

Aviad Glickman
Published: 11.30.08, 14:31 / Israel News

The State Prosecution has requested the police open an investigation against SOS Israel, an organization that held an awards ceremony in late 2007 for soldiers who refused to evict Jewish residents from the Hebron wholesale market in an operation carried out in August of that year.

 

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Event organizers are under investigation for incitement to insubordination. In particular, at the request of Deputy State Prosecutor Shai Nitzan, police will investigate electronic ads by SOS Israel urging soldiers to refuse orders to evict Jewish residents in Hebron and announcing a financial reward for this behavior.

 

In the ads, SOS Israel announced that they awarded'Israel Hero' certificates to insubordinate soldiers from the 2007 Hebron market incident – who, pursuant to their decision not to evict the Jews in Hebron, received a military jail sentence.  They also granted thousands of shekels to the soldiers' families.

  

The ad appealed to soldiers, "who had pledged on the Bible at the Western Wall to be loyal to the People of Israel and the homeland, not to abet the enemy but rather to refuse orders and to help the people of Hebron not to be bereaved of their property."

 

"We remind security forces of our glorious event during which we gave the parents of soldiers a sum of NIS 1,000 (approximately $250) for each night their child sat in jail for the transgression of refusing the order to evict families in Hebron," the ad continued.

 

The money was donated in 2007 by a US citizen who vowed to cover the legal costs for insubordinate soldiers and to pay their families a large some of money.

 

In response to the investigation, Rabbi Dov Wolpe of SOS Israel said he was calling for an investigation "against those who call to betray the land of Israel and takes advantage of IDF soldiers for political means."

 

"Every soldier swears on the Bible at the time of his enlistment… that he will be loyal to his people and his homeland.  The government forces the soldiers to betray their beliefs and their conscience as if they were merely tools of the politicians," Wolpe said.

 

Efrat Weiss contributed to this report

 

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