Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FOCUS

What solutions for California's overcrowded prisons?

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Gaza conflict: Palestinians mark sombre Eid

Read more

WEB NEWS

Celebrities in the Israel-Gaza crossfire

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Israeli strike takes out Gaza power station

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French newspaper apologises for Sarkozy story

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Last-ditch talks aim to avert Argentina default

Read more

DEBATE

Europe's Plan for Putin: Will Russian Leader Bend After New Sanctions? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Europe's Plan for Putin: Will Russian Leader Bend After New Sanctions?

Read more

FOCUS

Pakistan's Ahmadis living in fear of extremist attacks

Read more

  • Israel announces four-hour truce after deadly strike on UN school

    Read more

  • Suspect in Jewish Museum attack charged with 'terrorist' murder

    Read more

  • US rebounds to 4% growth in second quarter

    Read more

  • Video: Coping with rocket attacks in Israel’s Sderot

    Read more

  • Rats on the rampage at Louvre museum gardens

    Read more

  • France evacuates nationals, closes embassy in Libya

    Read more

  • Scores trapped as landslide hits Indian village

    Read more

  • Dozens killed in stampede at Guinea rap concert

    Read more

  • US and EU slap Russia with fresh sanctions over Ukraine

    Read more

  • 'Compelling' signs Kosovo leaders trafficked organs, prosecutor says

    Read more

  • Europe launches last resupply ship to space station

    Read more

  • Graphic: Ebola spreads across West Africa

    Read more

  • Video: How tourism is helping Rwanda’s gorillas, ex-poachers

    Read more

  • Islamists seize key Benghazi army base as fire rages on

    Read more

  • In pictures: ن - a sign of support for Iraq’s persecuted Christians

    Read more

Middle east

Former IDF soldier adds fuel to the fire on Facebook

Text by Sophie PILGRIM

Latest update : 2010-08-20

The former Israeli soldier whose Facebook photos of Palestinian detainees shocked the world, has today angered critics further by saying “it would be fun to kill Arabs, even slaughter them” during a public discussion on Facebook.


The photos of former IDF soldier Eden Abergil’s posing with blindfolded Palestinian detainees has caused international outrage, and become the focus of Israeli media, but Abergil added fuel to the fire Thursday by writing that she would happily “kill or even slaughter” Arabs.
 
The photos that sparked the outcry were posted on Abergil’s Facebook account and made “available to all”. Smiling and flirtatious, she posed for the camera in front of Palestinian and Arab detainees; hands tied and blindfolded. The comments below the photos, posted by Abergil and her friends, only confirmed her contempt for the subjects.
 
In an interview with Israeli media, Abergil denied any wrongdoing and said that she would do the same again today, although she confessed that she regretted posting the photos on the social networking website.
 
But despite her regret for the caused and an admission that she “truly understood what was wrong” with the pictures, the 21-year-old from Ashdod, in east Israel, continued to provide ammunition for her critics on Thursday when she lost her cool during an online discussion, again on Facebook.
 
The online argument started when Abergil commented on digitally edited images of herself that other Facebook users had posted as a joke. After a defensive rant about her not affording “Arab lovers to ruin her perfect life”, Abergil finished off with “there are no laws in war! I hate Arabs and wish them all the worst and it would be fun for me to kill them or even massacre them.”
 
Despite the scornful reaction of left-leaning Israeli media, which has followed Abergil’s every move since she became the most talked about person in the country, some of her fellow compatriots regard her as simply unlucky. Israeli blogger and France 24 Observer Lisa Goldman, who has been following the debate, says that Abergil could serve as a catalyst for action against racism.
 
“She’s become a symbol; the media are portraying her as a bad apple. But she’s not unique. She represents a certain type here in Israel and a much larger problem that needs addressing. There’s a lot of fear and racism fuelling this kind of resentment. Perhaps her [Abergil’s] actions and the subsequent publicity will provoke a proper and wide scale debate about how we can tackle this problem.”
 
Meanwhile, the furore continued online, where critics and supporters of Abergil alike battle out their differences. Neither the Israeli government nor the IDF have any control over Abergil’s actions or the online discussions, leaving this unfolding national debate out of their immediate reach.

 

Date created : 2010-08-19

  • ISRAEL

    Facebook photo soldier says 'I did nothing wrong'

    Read more

  • ISRAEL

    IDF soldier’s prisoner photos are the ‘tip of the iceberg’

    Read more

  • ON THE OBSERVERS

    Israeli soldier poses for Facebook before bound Palestinians

    Read more

COMMENT(S)