IDF Soldiers Speak Out in US

A pro-Israel program featuring IDF soldiers relating the truth about Hamas and Hizbullah terrorists is back on US campuses and Jewish communities.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu , | updated: 09:23

IDF soldiers
IDF soldiers
Israel news photo: Flash 90

A civilian pro-Israel program featuring IDF soldiers relating the truth about Hamas and Hizbullah terrorists has returned to American campuses and Jewish communities.

The program, sponsored by the pro-Israel StandWithUs organization, first hit the road in response to widespread anti-Israel bias in media coverage of the three-week Cast Lead counterterrorist campaign nearly two years ago.

The soldiers speaking on behalf of Israel include veterans of the Second Lebanon War in 2006, and their testimonies of personal sensitivity towards the terrorist-infested Arab population serve to counter allegations that the IDF was guilty of war crimes.

The campaign, which includes video presentations, will return to 25 American cities. One female combat medic told the website of the Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California. “Israel is very dear to my heart, and it felt like the world is very much against us. I see the news talking about soldiers like they are like monsters. I know this is not true.”

She added that her American audience will likely for the first time “see that we’re human like them. Even people who are not Jewish or pro-Israel would come up to me and say that they are proud of me.”

One video features “Inon,” who describes how he and his comrades almost were blown up by an elderly female suicide terrorist lying on a street in a Lebanese village, crying out for help. Inon, a reserve officer, took a medic and another soldier with him to treat her until they were about 150 feet away. Using a telescope lens, he noticed suicide bomb wires extending beyond her dress, and they beat a hasty retreat.

Another personal and video presentation by "Lior" describes an eight-hour ordeal in Gaza, where it was obvious to him that two Arabs were spying on Israeli troops. However, the soldiers upheld a “no-fire” order from senior commanders. “Israel was making very big military concessions in order to ensure that the civilian population gets the best treatment in a horrible situation,” he said.

The renewed campaign comes at a time when the anti-Israel boycott movement is popular on campuses. The soldiers visited cities on both coasts of the United States the past two weeks and are scheduled to hit the Midwest this week.

Pro-Arab movements have charged that the volunteer effort represents concern over the boycott and divestment movements.