Despite completely obliterating a defenceless population in the Gaza strip earlier this year, Israel today honoured fallen IDF soldiers and “victims of terror attacks”. Speaking to mark Memorial Day, President Shimon Peres said: “This year as well, we lost the best of our boys and girls, some of whom during Operation Cast Lead.”
The Haaretz article goes to explain how the widow of the last Israeli soldier to die in combat lit a memorial flame at the ceremony. However Capt. Yehonatan Netanel did not fall at the hands of Palestinians, it is explained, but was in fact killed when Israeli forces mistakenly opened fire on his unit.
It is comforting to discover that at least someone’s death is attributed to the morally reprehensible IDF, who whitewashed their own wave of terror in the recent inquiry into soldiers’ conduct during the invasion of Gaza. Reflective of Noam Chomsky’s ‘Worthy and Unworthy Victims’, we see that Israel only recognizes one type of victim, its own; and one type of perpetrator, the Palestinian, so this admission comes as something of a milestone.