The recent conviction of Israeli soldier Elor Azaria for executing a Palestinian man named Abdul Fattah Sharif as he lay motionless on the ground was entirely predictable. It’s predictability, however, is not due to any honour on the part of the Israeli military or judicial system but solely because this murder was captured on video by a human rights organisation documenting Israel’s abuses.
For years, Israel has propagated the myth that it has a superior army, with its soldiers behaving ethically and morally in its occupation. Yet, the reality of 50 years of military rule has proven the opposite — that Israel has acted with impunity towards Palestinians, killing, maiming and wounding them and stealing and destroying their land and homes at will. The statistics bear witness: Since 2003, Israeli military police opened criminal investigations into the killing of 179 Palestinians though its army killed more than 5,000 Palestinians during that time. Of those investigations, the army issued indictments on only 16 cases, none of them on murder charges.