TEL AVIV – A Palestinian father urges his toddler to throw stones at Israeli soldiers while goading them to shoot and kill his son since that is what they “always do.”
A video shows the four-year-old and his father waving Palestinian flags while approaching the soldiers.
“Shoot this little boy, after all you always do that to small children,” the father is heard shouting at the soldiers.
“Shoot! Shoot him! Kill him!” he adds.
Yet the plot thickens when the boy reaches the first soldier and the latter extends his hand for a high five. The boy complies and then offers his own hand, prompting the soldier to return the high five.
The endearing scene between would-be foes is followed by another in which the boy is finally seen heeding his father’s instruction and hurling stones – but instead of directing them at the soldiers, he throws them into an empty field.
In another twist, official Palestinian Authority television aired the clip with one crucial omission. They edited out the friendly exchange between the soldier and the child because it clearly didn’t fit with the message they were trying to convey, namely that even four-year-olds know that it is “forbidden to shake hands with soldiers.”
Narrating the video, the PA TV reporter said: “His son, who has yet to reach the age of five, also knows, despite his young age, that it is forbidden to shake hands with the soldiers, just as it is forbidden to make peace with them.”
The original, unedited version of the video appeared on the Facebook page of Israeli Army Spokesperson and Head of the Foreign Press Branch Lt. Col. Peter Lerner on Saturday and has since garnered close to a quarter million views.
Israeli watchdog Palestinian Media Watch points out the version aired on PA TV distorts the video so as to show the Israeli soldier reaching out to the Palestinian boy in slow motion before jumping ahead a few seconds so it looks as if the boy never touched the soldier’s proffered hand. The PA TV reporter lies to the viewers by saying that the boy refused to do so.