'My brother was turned into a scapegoat'

Sister of soldier who shot wounded terrorist in Hevron notes 'absurd' situation, in which he is accused of murdering a would-be murderer.

Uzi Baruch ,

Scene of the attack
Scene of the attack
Wissam Hashlamon/Flash90

The sister of the IDF soldier who last Thursday was filmed by a radical leftist activist shooting a wounded Arab terrorist in Hevron took to Facebook to defend her brother.

Noting on the way a camerawoman for the radical NGO B'Tselem filmed the incident, which came mere minutes after the terrorist and an accomplice stabbed and wounded a soldier at the site, she wrote, "radical sources stormed up against the IDF in order to slander it and turned my brother into a scapegoat."

"My younger brother shot a terrorist who came with a knife to murder the IDF force in Hevron, and suddenly my little brother, in our State of Israel, at the hands of our military attorney's office, is a murder suspect," she said, noting the hearing on Friday in which he was accused of murder.

"What that means is the establishment accuses my soldier brother with the murder of a terrorist who came to murder. I'm not sure that you get how absurd that is. We, our loving family, are all shocked," she wrote in her post.

Politicians including Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu rushed to condemn the soldier, followed shortly afterwards by the UN.

The soldier's sister noted, "when I told him to protect himself during our Shabbat eve conversations, he would respond: 'God protects me and I with my friends need to protect the nation of Israel.' That's my brother, a 19-year-old Zionist kid with 50 kilograms of equipment and a ton of responsibility on his shoulders."

Rushing to judgment

In her post, she continued, writing, "I want to tell you thank you. I read thousands of comments of support, I received a lot of encouraging calls. I at least know that the nation in whose name my brother was there is with him, even if two senior officials in the political establishment rushed to determine his judgment even before he gave his version to the investigators after the incident."

For his part, the soldier has explained that he shot the terrorist because he saw him moving and thought he was about to detonate a bomb belt. A witness at the scene confirmed that there were concerns the terrorist was hiding a bomb belt under his thick coat, which he wore despite it being a warm day.

On Friday a second video emerged taken at the scene of the terror attack, showing several people on site expressing concern that the terrorist “looks like he has an explosive pack," and warning others to keep clear of him until a bomb sapper arrives, apparently vindicating the soldier's version of events.

The soldier's sister added that she feels he was a pawn for the politicians who condemned him, saying they apparently were scared: "of who? Of radical sources who stormed up against the IDF in order to slander it and turned my brother into a scapegoat."

"That isn't fair, it isn't ethical or moral. It can't be that the establishment turns it back on its son in a time of distress - because currently we feel that the knife that the terrorist dropped on the road in Hevron (has been picked up by) the establishment (that) stabbed my brother in the back: not a single phone call from an official source, military or governmental, not a single visit, no briefing, no conversation."

Personally addressing Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (Likud), she added, "you, Mr. Defense Minister, who rushed to frame a picture replete with a moral indictment against my brother, I'm sorry but that was very immoral before an initial investigation. I hope you will have the strength to correct (what you did)."

Turning her attention to those supporting her brother, she added, "this is our life now, between crying and rage and great pain and a lot of worry for my younger brother, but thanks to you, dear people of the nation of Israel, thanks to you we will be strong because my little brother was there for you and now you are here for him. Thank you and may we merit to hear good news, have a good week."