Thursday, December 30, 2004

A comment on Arutz 7 re"Better Jailed than Buried"

The Musing "Better Jailed than Buried" has been up on the Arutz 7 site for a couple of days. This readers comment is something to add to the sorry situation.

so whats new?
Alas Batya this is nothing new. I just read the other day about that poor soldier Zviki which I shall paste his whole story as written by Moshe Feiglin as I dont see it anywhere on INN. I hope it comes through. Zviki By Moshe Feiglin: Yefim Kortzki could not understand how he had remained alive. A unit of the Golani Brigade, comprising 24 half-tracks and three tanks, began the climb towards Tel Faher during the battle to liberate the Golan Heights. The fortunate ones who reached the approaches to the objective stormed forward and fought like lions, exposed to the light of day, and facing superior forces deployed in well-dug-in positions. Fourteen commendations and two medals for bravery were awarded for this battle. There were few survivors. Yefim's luck ran out at the end of the Six Day War when his jeep, fitted with a recoilless gun, encountered a mine and he was gravely wounded. But Yefim isn't the kind of man who gives in. Despite his grave disability he refused to accept financial aid from the Ministry of Defense. "The country doesn't owe me anything", he explained. He was hospitalized for more than a year. After being discharged he immediately started working, built a wonderful family, and continued to fight the daily war of existence with his own efforts. Over the course of the years the effects of his serious injuries became more marked, and he is now confined to his home, and every movement he makes causes agonizing pains that recall for him the terrible events of that battle. I visit Yefim every Shabbat. A ray of hope emerged despite the terrible pains and the nightmares of yesterday. Nine years ago his son, Zviki, joined the IDF. Yefim passed on to his son all his Zionist ardor, his belief in the State of Israel, and in the IDF. Zviki is something. He is hard-working and talented, and stunned the senior officers who encountered him. He finished an officer's course and then advanced rapidly through progressive ranks, leaving a trail of reports of excellence in his wake. As a young officer he filled a number of positions usually given to people several ranks above him. In everything he did he introduced improvements and was well liked by those both above and below him. Zviki saw his future in the army. He joined the ranks of the regular army and was scheduled to start a course of studies about two years ago. When Yefim saw Zviki this made his day.But Zviki was too good for the State of Israel. One Shabbat, when the battalion commander took a vacation, he left Zviki in command of the battalion. Zviki was patrolling with a single jeep when he suddenly received a message. In the Arab village of Nazlat Zid a car bomb was being prepared to make an attack on Hadera. This was at the peak of the terrorist attacks, the distance from the village to the target was short, and there was no time to organize additional forces. Just Zviki, his driver, and an additional soldier, blocked the path of the car bomb intended to attack Hadera. Zviki didn't hesitate and entered the village.It was Shabbat. There were no people in the area apart from the residents of the village. So why was there a demonstration blocking his path? Obviously, this apparently spontaneous demonstration, was intended to delay him and thus permit the car bomb to leave for its destination. Zviki got out of the jeep and called on the demonstrators to leave the place. Naturally, no-one obeyed him. He fired in the air and this still had no effect. Time was pressing so Zviki did something that was customary at that time. He took careful aim and fired at a brick wall in a nearby house. He clearly saw the place that his bullet had hit. Now the demonstration dispersed and Zviki rushed to patrol the village. The car bomb was no longer there, and thank G-d had been caught in a nearby village. When Zviki left the village he saw that a crowd had gathered. The villagers pointed to an injured person in a vehicle. They claimed that he had been hit by a bullet. Zviki helped as best as he could and brought the vehicle with the wounded person to a nearby medical unit. As a result of pressure applied by the Betzelem organization, Zviki was brought to trial. The prosecution had no real proof. The body of the injured person had been taken away by the Arabs and buried a long time earlier, and no-one could prove that he had been killed by a bullet. It is quite likely that as in other similar cases, local Arabs had killed the person and used the body for propaganda purpose. But why should the military court concern itself with such explanations, when precedents have already been established by the Supreme Court, and Leftist media person Ilana Dayan is breathing down its neck? A window frame, without the glass, was produced as proof that Zviki's bullet had exploded it. (It's worth mentioning that a bullet from an M16 rifle, as used by Zviki, leaves a hole, but the rest of the glass remains intact.) Zviki request to return to the village and locate the place where his bullet hit the wall was rejected. Two very difficult years ensued for Zviki and his parents. They had spent all their money on lawyers and appeals. Nothing was of any avail. Even his final request to receive a pardon from the CGS was rejected. He was reduced in rank, the studies promised him were cancelled, and this morning Zviki entered the military prison where he will serve his six months sentence. This is the prize given by the State of Israel to a devoted, talented officer who gave nine years to serving in the IDF, years in which a person builds his future. For his courage in facing alone an incited crowd, and terrorists planning to perpetrate an attack on Hadera, the State of Israel should have awarded Zviki a medal. But this is not what happens in the Israeli era of reversal of values. Zviki, an excellent officer wearing a kippah from Karnei Shomron, was just the prey the establishment was waiting for. I have visited Yefim every Shabbat for many years. Over the last two years I have seen how his world has collapsed around him in ruins. He is incapable of understanding how the same State in which he believed and for which he gave everything, can do such a thing to him. I tried to explain to Yefim that it isn't the State. Someone has stolen the State from us, but one day it will be liberated. But Yefim doesn't want to hear this, and is sinking into depression. I have avoided publicizing the affair until now. Zviki has been taken captive by people who have covered their eyes with a red sheet. I didn't want them to know of the connection, but it's now all over. Zviki is in jail and Yefim is more broken in spirit than in body. This man with a broken body, who lives on drugs against pain that would have killed a normal person, is starting tomorrow a sole demonstration opposite the entrance to the General Staff HQ in Tel Aviv. He intends to sit there in the rain and cold, and I fear for his life. And Zviki? Thank G-d, Zviki is beginning to understand what his father is unable to accept. "You must appeal to the Supreme Court", one of the lawyers tried to persuade him. But Zviki had already understood that he had been caught in the claws of the monster. He now recognizes what he is up against. "What's the point?", he replied, "It will only mean that in another two years I'll be in the same situation, but with bigger debts". Zviki will be released in another six months. He will be an asset for any entrepreneur. He will study and work industriously, and faithfully, and will be better than others. "In another two years", I said to Yefim, "you and your wife will thank the court for finding Zviki guilty. You will thank the CGS and the other spineless officers who turned their backs on him. You will thank them, because without them Zviki would have stayed in the army and wouldn't have realized even part of his capabilities." We shall in the end release the State from its captivity, and it will then need first-rate people like Zviki. It will thank them when it is released from its captivity.

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