Responsibility sought by injured American's parents
Nancy and Mike Anderson, parents of Tristan, who was apparently injured by IDF tear gas shell during protest in Naalin hold press conference. His mother says no one expressed any sorrow or regret. Father demands justice for son, wishes for whole world to hear truth
Tristan was injured during the protest some 10 days ago, and remains in critical condition. The IDF reported that the dozens of Israelis, Palestinians and foreigners took part in the demonstration, during which they trespassed into closed military areas and threw stones at the forces. The forces returned fire using crowd dispersal mechanisms.
The parents explained before the reporters their son's reason for coming to Israel, saying that he wished to observe the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the side.
They said that he met his girlfriend here and planned on traveling in Israel with her for a few months. The Andersons said their son likes photography and writing and never posed a threat to anyone, though now he is fighting for his life just as he fought for justice throughout his life.
Nancy Anderson claimed that it firing at peace activists is "simply horrible."
The American's mother said that she does not hold a grudge against the soldier who fired the shot at her son, but feels a deep sense of injustice for the lack of responsibility taken for the incident. She said no one ever called to express sorrow or regret, leaving the family in shock and fear.
Mike Anderson, Tristan's father, said that his son is an excellent world citizen and that he is disturbed, as any father would be, to see his son in such pain. He pointed out what is in his eyes the irony of his son being injured during a peace demonstration. He said that he and his wife demand justice for their son and that the whole world hear the truth.
Next to Tristan's bed in the neurological wing of Tel HaShomer Sheba Medical Center, Israeli peace activist Yonatan Pollak sat for many long days.
"I met Tristan nine years ago at a demonstration in Prague," said Pollak. "We met at various junctures throughout the world. He even demonstrated in Iraq at the outset of the war and has really wanted to come here for a while. He arrived here a month ago with his girlfriend out of commitment and passion to try and oppose the things he views as damaging and unjust, as he does in any other place."
Since the injury, Tristan has undergone three head surgeries. Last week, dozens of peace activists gathered outside Tel Aviv's Kirya in response to what they claim is the IDF's excessive use of force against weekly demonstrators in the village of Naalin.