At least ten Israeli soldiers have opted for 14-day prison terms rather than going through with their deployment to Gaza. The refusals are the first of their kind since Israel launched its massive assault on the Gaza Strip. In a statement, the soldiers said they were refusing deployment on “conscience’s grounds.” No’em Levna, a first lieutenant in Israel’s army, said: “We killed 900 Palestinians in 17 days, including hundreds of children. If violence must be used, it should be used minimally, and that isn’t what’s happening. Killing innocent civilians cannot be justified. Nothing justifies this kind of killing. It’s devilish… [T]he hatred and anger we are planting in Gaza will rebound on us.” (Ma’an News Agency, Jan. 13)
Israel’s “refuseniks” have called upon soldiers to resist aggression against Gaza before, as well as the 2006 Lebanon campaign.
See our last post on Gaza and the Israeli peace bloc.