Former ID general at Hebron soldier’s trial: Terrorists should be killed

Gen. (res.) Uzi Dayan, former IDF Dep. Chief of Staff, testified for the defense at the trial of Elor Azaria, the soldier charged with manslaughter for shooting dead a prone terrorist in Hebron. He said the military police has no jurisdiction in operational matters. His case should never have come to court, but put before an inquiry commission. Even if he erred, he should not have been judged as a criminal unless criminal intent was established.

 “Whether or not Azaria erred, every day of this trial damages the IDF,” said the general, It is not too late for a plea bargain to try and contain the enormous damage caused the armed forces. In the view of Uzi Dayan, “Terrorists’ blood is on their heads. They deserve to die, regardless of the danger they present at any given moment.”

He criticized the military court’s procedure which, he said, had “trampled [the soldier’s] right to being deemed innocent” until proven guilty.

Another former general, Dani Biton, who testified for the Azaria defense, said that the Hebron soldier couldn’t tell whether the injured terrorist on the ground carried a bomb or not.  He pointed out that, under the directives laid down by the IDF Operations Division, a soldier is instructed to shoot a downed terrorist “if he makes the slightest movement, even if the soldier and his commander do not sense an immediate threat.” Gen. Biton advised the court to uphold this written IDF directive in their judgment for Elor Azaria.

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