Ousted soldier discharged from IDF

Meged, who refused to shake Halutz's hand, petitions High Court.

halutz fists 298 AJ (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
halutz fists 298 AJ
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
First Sergeant Hananel Dayan-Meged, who in protest of the disengagement refused to shake Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen.Dan Halutz's hand at an award ceremony two weeks ago, was discharged Monday from the IDF one month before his original date of discharge. Meged, a tank driver who was cited as an outstanding soldier, appealed to the High Court of Justice Monday morning that he be reinstated to his unit, from which he was expelled by Halutz as a punishment.
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A week-and-a-half ago Meged requested that Halutz publicly announce that he had committed no offense and that he be reinstated to his unit. Otherwise, Meged said, he would appeal the High Court against the Chief of Staff's decision. The soldier's early discharge was apparently unrelated to his appeal to the High Court, but was a result rather, of the soldier's scheduled release after three years of mandatory service. Megged said at the award ceremony, held at the President's residence, that he would not shake the hand of someone responsible for the eviction of Jews. "I saw the bulldozers and my grandfather's [Gaza] house before me," said Megged, who now lives in Psagot. His grandfather died shortly after the pullout. Katsav immediately rebuked him, and the ceremony continued as planned. Following the incident, an IDF spokesman said Megged's certificate of excellence might be revoked.