Erdan: Gantz turned back on Druze soldier in 2000 Joseph Tomb disaster

"Benny Gantz was one of the commanders who turned his back on him, and did not do 'everything in his power' to save his life."

January 14, 2019 14:40
1 minute read.
Erdan: Gantz turned back on Druze soldier in 2000 Joseph Tomb disaster

Israeli Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)


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Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan called Israel Resilience Party leader Benny Gantz's criticism of the Nation-State Law "shameful" and disingenuous in light of Gantz's alleged abandonment of a Druze soldier during the Second Intifada.

"When Palestinian terrorists shot Border Guard Madhat Yusuf," Erdan wrote in a Twitter post, adding that, "Benny Gantz was one of the commanders who turned his back on him, and did not do 'everything in his power' to save his life. Gantz's statement is shameful! The Likud Party's covenant with our Druze brothers is eternal and unshakable."

Gantz promised a group of Druze leaders Monday that he would work to get the controversial Jewish Nation-State Law changed.

"I will do everything in my power to fix the Nation-State Law," he said.

In October 2000, Yusuf was killed at Joseph's Tomb in the West Bank city of Nablus, and his family claimed that Gantz, then commander of the Judea and Samaria Division, did not send in forces to rescue the injured soldier and did not take responsibility for the incident.

Yusuf's family considered filing a petition with the High Court of Justice against the appointment of Gantz as IDF Chief of Staff.

Yusuf, a Druze from Beit Jann, died of wounds sustained during fierce fighting in Nablus at the outbreak of the Second Intifada. He was wounded in the neck by a bullet and died after Palestinian security forces prevented his medical evacuation for over five hours.

Yusuf's brother also attacked Gantz's statement. "This man will not be able to run a country," he said, adding that "someone who abandons a wounded person on the ground is not someone who can be head of state. He will abandon an entire country like he abandoned my brother. His interests are what matter to him."

"He said that half of Nablus must be conquered in order to save a soldier, so what?" added Yusuf's brother. "Conquer it then. Why would he abandon a soldier? "

"Perhaps it would be better for Gantz to stay silent," Erdan said.

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