Reporter's Notebook: Media and the fate of a soldier

The disdain for the media that Azaria’s supporters believe turned their hero into a criminal, was visceral.

January 5, 2017 00:19
1 minute read.
The father of Israeli soldier Elor Azaria, who is charged with manslaughter

The father of Israeli soldier Elor Azaria, who is charged with manslaughter after he shot a wounded Palestinian assailant as he lay on the ground in Hebron on March 24, kisses his head in a military court. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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 experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • 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

Chants of “the media are terrorists” do not bode well for a reporter in the midst of angry protesters – protesters who believe that media, in a concerted effort with “extreme-leftist” judges, unjustly condemned Elor Azaria for the murder of an immobilized Palestinian who sought to attack IDF soldiers.

While violence at the protest was not extensive, some protesters – mostly right-wing members of the La Familia soccer club – did gang up on journalists, pushing, shoving and at one time grabbing this reporter’s phone for photographing the incidents. At other times, protesters clashed with police and broke through a police barricade, seeking to block the road.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

“Let us through!” one protester shouted at a line of police officers barricading the protesters. Minutes later, a group of young men would ram through the line of officers. “This protest is for our sons! For your sons! They are in danger and you’re in danger, you can’t shoot terrorists. Let us through!” the man yelled. Nevertheless, the officers stood straight-faced, arms linked.

“Terrorists must die!” protesters shouted. “How can Azaria be considered a murderer for killing a terrorist who was coming to kill us?” another protester yelled.

The nearly three-hour verdict appeared to have the unintended consequence of wearing out the men, women and teenage protesters who stood by and received updates, as IDF Judge Col. Maya Heller thoroughly rejected all the points of Azaria’s defense. Around an hour into the reading of the verdict, it was clear that Azaria would be found guilty.

Around two hours into the reading many protesters had left, while four were arrested.

Still, the disdain for the media that Azaria’s supporters believe turned their hero into a criminal, was visceral.

Members of La Familia spat and made obscene gestures at cameras.

Mothers, who have soldiers in combat units, wept while draped in the flag of the country they believe has betrayed them.

Related Content

August 19, 2018
Convicted kosher slaughterhouse CEO freed by Trump arrives in Israel