Leaked Report Suggests Impunity for IDF Soldiers in Killing of Elderly Man

Human rights advocates reactedSunday was a bitter day for the Israeli soldiers who were allegedly involved in the detention of an elderly Palestinian American man by occupation forces in a West Bank city earlier this month.

“This is a policy: Israel does not prosecute those responsible for harming Palestinians, thus making their lives miserable,” the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem tweeted.

The Washington Post citing Hebrew-language report The Israeli news site YnetSunday, a leaked summary of an Israel Defense Forces investigation into the death Omar Assad revealed that the 78-year old former Milwaukee grocer was dragged out of his vehicle, blindfolded and gagged, and then handcuffed before he fell silent at a Jiljilya building site on January 12.

The summary of the report stated that IDF soldiers failed to provide medical assistance to Assad despite the presence a army medic.

Assad was suffering from heart problems. Witnesses claimed that Assad’s face was pale from lack of oxygen after he was held for an hour by Israeli troops in Jiljilya. Islam Abu Zaher was a physician who attempted resuscitation of Assad almost immediately following the troops’ departure. He claimed that he had suffered a heart attack.

The report suggested that none of the IDF soldiers involved “would be indicted, nor have they been suspended.”

An IDF spokesperson, Lt. Col. Amnon Shefler, said last week that troops apprehended Assad “after he resisted a check, a routine check, where he was questioned. And because of his lack of cooperation and his behavior, that is why they stopped him.”

The IDF said Sunday that “it should be clarified that no decisions have yet been made regarding the investigation case.”

B’Tselem tweeted, “Maybe this time, when it comes to its citizen, the United States for a change will do something in response to the crimes committed by its good friend.”

Susan Abulhawa is a Palestinian-American activist writer said Sunday that “Omar Assad was an American citizen. We need the Department of Justice to convene a grand jury to indict and extradite his killers, because no non-Jew can get justice in Israel.”

The Post says the U.S. State Department has asked Israel to conduct a “thorough investigation” of Assad’s death.

Rachel Corrie was an American activist who worked with the International Solidarity Movement. crushed to death Dan Shapiro, the U.S. ambassador, was killed in an IDF-armoured bulldozer while protecting Palestinian homes in occupied Gaza. expressed his dissatisfaction with Israel’s investigation of the incident. Attempts by Corrie’s family to hold Israel accountable for the woman’s death ultimately proved futile.