Gantz removes Eisner from post over rifle incident

Eisner will not be able to serve in a command position for 2 years, will not assume Bahd 1 post.

April 18, 2012 12:32
1 minute read.
IDF officer hitting activist with M-16

IDF officer hitting activist with M-16 370. (photo credit: YouTube Screenshot)

IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.- Gen. Benny Gantz decided on Wednesday to dismiss Lt.-Col. Shalom Eisner from his post as deputy commander of the Jordan Valley Brigade, after the officer slammed his M-16 into a Danish activist's face over the weekend.

According to the decision, Eisner will not be able to serve in a command position for two years and will not take up his planned posting in the summer as deputy commander of the Bahd 1 Officers Training School. The decision, however, allows Eisner to remain in the IDF.

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Gantz’s move was based on the findings from OC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Nitzan Alon’s investigation into the incident, which took place on Saturday, and found “serious ethical flaws” with Eisner’s conduct.

Alon and Gantz also discovered professional mistakes with the way Eisner and his troops had prepared for the bicycle demonstration that was led by Palestinian and European activists on Road 90. Eisner claimed that he had been attacked by several of the demonstrators and that he hit them with his rifle to disperse the demonstration.

A video, however, showed Eisner slam his M-16 in the face of a Danish protester without provocation.

In another picture he is shown lifting his M-16 above his head before slamming it into the back of another demonstrator.

This is the second time this year that Gantz has fired a senior officer for so-called ethical failures. In February, the chief of staff dismissed Battalion 74’s commander Lt.-Col.

Muli Cohen for falsifying a report after he accidentally left a soldier behind following an operation inside a Palestinian village in the West Bank.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Palestinian who videotaped Eisner said he would cooperate with the IDF investigation into the incident.

“I will give them my full testimony and give them the [video] recording so that they can know the truth and so the officer is brought to justice for what he did,” Bakr Muhammad Abdel Hak said, according to Army Radio.

The videographer was summoned to testify by the military police at an IDF base near Nablus.

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