TEL AVIV – Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has penned a letter asking Secretary of State John Kerry to probe claims that Israeli and Egyptian security forces have committed “gross violations of human rights.”
The letter strongly implies that if the allegations are proven true, U.S. military aid to the countries should be affected.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday replied to the request for a probe, releasing a statement assailing Leahy’s letter: “The IDF and security forces are not murderers.”
“IDF soldiers and Israeli police put their lives on the line to defend themselves and innocent civilians from bloodthirsty terrorists who try to kill them.
“Where is the concern for the violations of the human rights of many Israelis who have been murdered or wounded by criminal killers? This letter should have been addressed to those who incite children to engage in acts of cruel terrorism,” Netanyahu said.
Regarding Israel, the letter specifically cited allegations documented by the far-left, George Soros-funded Amnesty International, which in the past has accused Israel of “war crimes,” controversial accusations that were highly disputed.
The letter asks Kerry to inquire whether Israeli security forces acting against Palestinian attackers took action that would trigger the implementation of the Leahy Law, a law authored by Leahy himself that prohibits the State Department and Pentagon from providing military assistance to foreign militaries that violate human rights with impunity.
Leahy asked Kerry to probe the following deaths:
- Fadi Alloun, a 19-year old resident of East Jerusalem’s Issawiya neighborhood who stabbed a 15-year-old and was shot and killed when he fled and security forces noticed a knife in his hand. Video showed that he was stalking the streets of Jerusalem with the knife when he was shot by Israeli police officers from afar.
Far-left human rights groups have claimed that Israeli forces did not need to shoot Alloun and should have approached the knife-wielding teen to arrest him.
- Sa’ad Al-Atrash, a Palestinian accused of attacking Israeli soldiers with a knife at a checkpoint when he was shot and killed. Atrash’s family claimed that he was not armed and that he was shot for no apparent reason while quarrelling with an Israeli soldier who had asked for his ID.
- Mutaz Ahmad Uweisat, a 16-year old Palestinian shot and killed while attempting to stab an officer near West Bank settlement of Armon Hanatziv. Anti-Israel conspiracy theorists have baselessly claimed that Israel planted a knife on Uweisat and that he was shot for no reason.
- Hadeel al-Hashlamoun, an 18-year old Palestinian girl shot and killed under questionable circumstances while she was at a checkpoint. Amnesty’s own witness, however, says she had a knife yet it still accused Israeli forces of engaging in an “extra judicial execution.”
Even if al-Hashlamoun did have a knife, Israeli soldiers, who are protected with body armour and heavily equipped with advanced weapons, could have controlled the situation and arrested her without threatening her life. Open fire regulations of the Israeli military in the occupied West Bank allow soldiers to open fire only when their lives are in imminent danger, and Amnesty International concludes that this was not the case in the shooting of al-Hashlamoun, as she was standing still and separated from the soldiers by a metal barrier.
The IDF carried out its own internal investigation and concluded soldiers should have only arrested her in the case.
Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.