Monday, November 17, 2008

Price of Palestinian Blood Low Due to Recession

Back in this post, I interviewed members of an organization called Zochrot, which seeks to bring the story of the Palestinian Nakba to the Israeli public. Zochrot member Ranin Geries told me that Israelis think "the blood of the Palestinian is very cheap" and this sentiment was echoed last week by the sentencing of Avraham Tomer in Tel Aviv.

In October of 2006, Tomer and a few other Border Police officers detained Iyad Abu Ra’iyeh and two other Palestinian men at the construction site where they worked, on suspicion of living in Israel illegally. The men were detained in a small room on the construction site and beaten while they were questioned.

Israeli Human Rights group B'Tselem reports on the case and Judge Oded Mudrik described the events in his verdict:
The three PSIs [Palestinians] were forced to sit with their backs to the wall, and the defendant was posted to guard them. The defendant cocked his rifle, which was lying on his shoulder in the “cross” position, while aiming it at one of the PSIs, Iyad Tawfiq Abu Ra’iyeh (hereafter: “the deceased”). In this situation, as he was cocking the rifle, the defendant absent-mindedly pressed the trigger. A bullet was fired from the weapon of the defendant and it struck the neck of the deceased, causing his death.
For "absent-mindedly" pressing the trigger of his gun, Tomer was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to one year in jail. You can go to the B'Tselem page if you have any interest in reading Judge Mudrik's justification for the sentence he handed down.

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