Dear IDF Soldiers: You Are Not Supposed to be Scarecrows

How is Bibi going to attack Iran if the soldiers he sends can’t even defend themselves against little girls?

This rhetorical question is not even a joke-Especially not to anyone who’s seen the incident that went viral in Nabi Salach this week. In the video, you can see two young teenage girls smacking and scratching IDF officers. The officers, one a captain, are too petrified to even react.

Ahed Tamimi smacks and scratches IDF soldiers

They might even get a citation

The most bizarre part of the story is that according to the IDF, these are model soldiers. The top brass in the IDF sees nothing wrong with our troops getting bullied by teenage girls. Even the supposedly ‘hawkish’ defense minister, Avigdor Lieberman, who wants to add Um El Fahm to a Palestinian state couldn’t find it in him to criticize the troops saying “The soldiers acted in accordance with the orders they received from above.”

The two choices

So what’s an IDF soldier to do? On the one hand, you don’t want to go to jail for defending yourself. On the other hand, it would be nice to maintain an ounce of self respect while wearing a uniform. You basically have two choices-to either take the path of Elor Azarya, a medic who violated IDF protocol to do the right thing by killing a terrorist. Or, you can play by the rules and cause the army you represent irreversible worldwide embarrassment (and damage) as the officer in question did.

What they must do moving forward

Here’s the thing-the ‘following orders’ excuse is no longer valid. Soldiers need to realize that the state doesn’t own their conscience. IDF troops are not supposed to be robots. That’s because what’s important to understand is that the country they are defending is just as much Elior Azarya’s as it is IDF chief Gadi Eisenkott’s. And if Mr. Eisenkott decides to self-destruct, his troops must refuse to participate. Yes, soldiers should refuse the types of orders that tie their hands or endanger their country’s security. Just think about it-if enough soldiers were brave enough to refuse orders as was the case of sergeant Avi Bieber in 2005 during the Gaza disengagement, the entire expulsion could have been avoided altogether. That alone would have spared Israel operations Cast Lead and Protective edge (not to mention endless rockets falling in the center of the country).

But won’t that lead to anarchy?

And yes, I realize that if IDF personnel did whatever they wanted, the military couldn’t function as one unit. But on the other hand, if the military is too afraid to protect the country it is meant to protect, the very state it’s supposed to defend can not function either. That is a much worse scenario. That is also precisely what’s happening today inside Israel. Think about it- during every Gaza operation, instead of setting out to kill every Gazan shooting rockets into Israel, the IDF simply allowed the terrorists to shut down a quarter of the country with a daily barrages of homemade missiles launched into soverign Israel unanswered. The most disturbing part is that no one in the IDF’s upper brass will be held accountable for their misplaced mercy.

Bottom line

When the enemy sends their teenage daughters to smack you around, and you’re too afraid to defend yourself, you are no longer a soldier. You are a frightened robot who prefers freedom over dignity. Unfortunately, as the disturbing video revealed, the IDF has succeeded in taking away the one thing left that made our soldiers human-their sense of morality.

About the Author
David Sidman is a candidate in the Zehut political party, Israel activist and contributor to He is also a professional dog trainer. You can follow him at @theIsraeliShow