Following claims made by graduates of the Rabin Pre-military Academy at a conference last month that IDF soldiers deliberately shot and killed Gaza civilians during Operation Cast Lead, the Military Police completed its official investigation into the accounts on Monday and concluded that they were categorically false and based on rumors.
On Wednesday, the Jerusalem Post, citing an IDF source, had reported that the allegations were proven to be untrue in official army investigations.
The probe also concluded that the stories of the soldiers who participated in the conference were purposely exaggerated and made extreme, in order to make a point to the participants at the conference.
The IDF Advocate-General Brig.-Gen. Avihai Mandelblit decided to close the case in the wake of the findings.
In particular, the results of the investigation referred to a testimony from a soldier named Aviv, who claimed to have been given orders to fire at an elderly Palestinian woman. According to the Military Police probe, the soldier witnessed no such thing, and was only repeating a rumor he had heard. In an unrelated investigation, it was found that in a similar incident, a woman suspected of being a suicide bomber approached some IDF troops, who opened fired at her after repeatedly trying to stop her from advancing.
This same soldier admitted that he had not witnessed additional incidents he had described during the conference.
A claim made by a different soldier, Ram, who had supposedly been ordered to open fire at a woman and two children, was also proved by the investigation to be an incident that he had not witnessed. After checking the claim, it was found that a force had opened fire in a different direction, toward two suspicious men who were unrelated to the civilians in question.[...]