Sunday, March 21, 2004

Bereaved parents planning anti-recruitment campaign

Accuse country's leaders of callous and cynical indifference, caring only about their careers and personal ambitions 
Eitan Rabin Maariv International

A group of bereaved parents has begun organizing an anti-induction campaign, aimed at getting recruits to refuse to join the IDF. The campaign will coincide with the annual August induction, when most high school graduates begin their three-year national service.
They have prepared a flyer, which will be distributed outside the main induction base at Tel Hashomer. Maariv has obtained a draft of the flyer, and brings its main points to the public.
“We are not recommending you refuse to join the IDF. On the contrary, we encourage you to join, since the country's oligarchy and political elite needs an army to ensure nothing happens to their ill-gotten gains, which they have amassed at the expense of the average Israeli, having been given a license by the politicians to pillage the national economy, by purchasing major publicly owned economic assets for a pittance”.
“Do not be fooled by the officers spinning good lines about joining elite units. Forget the stories about battle and glory; you are young, inexperienced and easily deceived. The truth is that your chances of returning alive are not great, and if you fall on duty you will be forgotten after a few months, as unimportant to the powers that be as the earth under which you will lie for eternity”.
“As a national serviceman your sole value to them is as canon fodder. They pay you NIS 15 a day, which is clearly all they think you are worth. If you die your parents will receive the country's thanks, platitudes soon forgotten and a NIS 1,200 check”.
“Your commanders are no better, seeing you as stepping stones to higher rank. Negligence and indifference abounds, resulting in the needless deaths of dozens of soldiers every year”.
The organizers are all bereaved parents who feel the army has abandoned them. They believe the army has glossed over the blunders that caused their sons to die in vain, covering up for incompetent but well-connected officers.
They all complain that bereaved parents of national servicemen are the stepchildren of the Defense Ministry, compared to widows and children of regular army personnel.
The IDF spokesperson would not take questions on the issue, other tan a laconic statement saying the IDF cares about all its fallen and their families.