IDF commanders are telling soldiers in Gaza to KILL all men of fighting age, even if they are unarmed and not engaged in acts of war
04/10/2024 // Cassie B. // Views

Israel has been insisting that its actions in Gaza are meant to eliminate the threat of Hamas terrorists, but the civilian death toll in the Strip tells a far different story. It often seems that IDF soldiers are going there and killing nearly everyone they see – and an Israeli reporter recently told CNN that this is exactly what they’ve been ordered to do.

Axios reporter Barak Ravid relayed to the news outlet how an IDF reserve officer informed him that commanders on the ground in the enclave have been ordering soldiers to “just shoot every man in fighting age.” In other words, their assignment is to kill all Palestinian men and not just terrorists.

He said the reserve officer was part of the same unit that shot and killed Israeli hostages who had escaped their captors despite the fact that they were holding a white flag at the time.

Ravid, who has close connections in the Israeli government, clarified that these orders aren’t coming from the top, however. “Those are the orders, but that’s not the rules of engagement that is coming from the IDF leadership.”

“But on the ground, that’s what they’re being told?” host Anderson Cooper asked.

“Exactly,” Ravid replied, adding that the commanders on the ground are interpreting orders from IDF headquarters in different ways.

Cooper told him that this sounds like a “recipe for disaster,” and Ravid agreed, saying that this is why the IDF has lost its long-held reputation for being a professional military.

“And what we’ve seen, in this strike, but in many other strikes that we didn’t talk about, is that this thing during this war, this profession-  professionalism has gone away,” he said.

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He also told Cooper that the horrific targeted killing of World Central Kitchen volunteers by an Israeli drone was not surprising, returning to the example of the Israeli hostages who were escaping and holding a white flag but were killed by Israeli soldiers. If the order on the ground is to kill all men of fighting age, it’s only logical that these aid workers, along with so many other innocent people, would be targeted.

Ravid did not clarify what these commanders mean when they say to kill all men of “fighting age,” but it’s safe to assume they are applying a very broad definition of fighting age considering how many people of all ages are being killed in the Gaza Strip.

Top rabbi says everyone in Gaza should be killed

This appalling “kill everyone” sentiment was recently espoused by Israel’s top rabbi in Jaffa, Eliyahu Mali, who is the head of the Shirat Moshe religious school and has students who will be serving in the military soon. His comments came during a conference about dealing with civilians in Gaza during the war.

He characterized it as a “religious war” and said: “The basic law in a religious war, and in this case in Gaza, is that ‘you shall not leave alive anything that breathes’ (Deuteronomy), and if you do not kill them, they will kill you. Today’s saboteurs are the children in the previous military operation whom you kept alive and the women are the ones who produce the saboteurs.”

When asked if he is calling for children to be killed, he reiterated: “It’s the same thing. You can’t embellish with the Torah. Today, he’s a child, tomorrow he’s a fighter. There are no questions here. Today’s terrorists were 8-year-old children in the previous military operation. So, you cannot stop there. Therefore, the ruling concerning Gaza is different.”

According to the Hamas-run Gaza Ministry of Health, more than 33,000 Palestinians have been killed by the IDF in Gaza since the war began in October – and it is likely these figures will climb much, much higher if Israeli soldiers are killing everyone of fighting age.

Sources for this article include:

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