IDF snub of non-Jewish soldier's grave sparks ado

Gantz apologizes for offense after not planting flag on grave of last fallen soldier in pre-Remembrance Day custom.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
April 12, 2013 01:56
1 minute read.
IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz

IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz 370. (photo credit: IDF Spokesman's Office)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

After failing to place a flag on the grave of the last fallen IDF soldier in Jerusalem's Mount Herzl military cemetery, and being slammed with criticism that this was done because that soldier is not Jewish, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gentz issued an apology on Thursday evening to anyone who was offended by the incident.

Before Remembrance Day for the Fallen of Israel’s wars, which will be marked on Monday, it is customary for the chief of staff to place a flag, in the military graveyard on Mount Herzl, on the grave of the last IDF soldier who fell.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The statement added that IDF procedures have been updated and that in the future, the chief of staff will place the flag on the grave of the last fallen soldier, regardless of the soldier's religion, race or gender.

Meretz chief Zehava Gal-On had accused Gantz earlier on Thursday of not planting a flag on the grave of the latest IDF fallen soldier, Evgeny Tuluzko, because he was not Jewish.

“Mourning is equally difficult among Jews as it is among non-Jews. It was not necessary to add to the family’s grief through alienation grounded in an ugly discrimination of blood which also contradicts basic democratic principles,” Gal-On said.

Gal-On added that the fact that the fallen soldier was not Jewish “did not hinder the state from asking him to sacrifice himself for its sake, yet upon his death [the state] casts him ‘beyond the fence’ [of the cemetery] and refuses to pay him his final respects.”

Related Content

idf hebron
August 22, 2014
Palestinians throw Molotov cocktail at IDF checkpoint in Hebron

By KHALED ABU TOAMEH, TOVAH LAZAROFF