(JNi.media) Field commanders in Judea and Samaria have complained to battalion and brigade commanders over the past two weeks that they do not receive the backing of the military apparatus with regard to investigations of incidents in which soldiers shoot at rioters who throw Molotov cocktails at them, Walla reported Tuesday. According to the commanders in the field, the wave of terror has ushered in increased military police investigations against them, to a disproportionate degree.
“In each event that involves killing a civilian who was not involved in terrorism, the Military Police opens an investigation,” the field officers said, asking: “But since when are investigations launched against soldiers who fired at Molotov cocktail throwers, or key instigators, who got killed? Who determines what’s life threatening? Who says a Molotov cocktail thrower is uninvolved?”
The complaints were raised at a brigade commanders forum held recently at the Judea and Samaria Division. Some of the commanders demanded that before military police investigators approach the soldiers, they should receive explanations on what happened during the event and what led to the shooting incident. One field commander said bitterly about the military police investigators, “Let them experiencing the feeling, let him go through a disturbance, then we’ll see them launching an investigation.”
Field commanders at the forum said the situation was reminiscent of the 2014 Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, which was followed by a slew of military police probes. The warriors are even angrier at the military prosecutors who, they claim, force a situation whereby a soldier would rather not open fire when appropriate, than have to face a martial court.
One defensive move IDF commanders have adopted are helmet cameras—which the soldiers buy through fund raising, in violation of standard military regulations. Armed with a video record of the actions the Arab rioter was involved in just before being shot often helps their case, they feel.