The video above captured the moment that six Israeli soldiers stormed an East Jerusalem grocery store and arrested a Palestinian boy. Shortly after the boy walked into the store, a soldier enters, grabs him and violently tackles him to the ground. Five other soldiers follow suit. At one stage, one of them is seen hitting the boy’s face. During the incident, the shop owner is assaulted and is captured limping as the soldiers leave.
This video demonstrates what it takes to be considered a “security threat” in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. A boy doing his grocery shopping constitutes a security threat. A child, walking home from school, is also one – that’s what witnesses say 13-year-old Abed Al-Rahman Shadi Obeidallah was doing when he was shot dead. Perhaps to be a “security threat” to Israel you must simply be a Palestinian.
Since Sunday two Palestinian teenagers have been killed because of the threat they supposedly posed to heavily armed Israeli soldiers. Children are arrested by the Israeli military on a daily basis, most on charges of “throwing stones”. The UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict recently presented troubling statistics regarding the large number of Palestinian children who are either killed, arrested, or suffer from inhumane and humiliating treatment.
Attacks on Palestinian youths have not simply evolved out of a spiralling situation, but are rather the occupation in full operation. It is Israel’s intention to teach children that “we can get you, whenever we want and without reason”. Its aim is to instil fear and to crush dissent. But it will not work. It will simply breed contempt from a new generation.
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