OVERRIDE

Our Harsh Logic

Israeli Soldiers' Testimonies from the Occupied Territories, 2000-2010

Metropolitan Books

Israeli soldiers speak out for the first time about the truth of the Palestinian occupation, in "one of the most important books on Israel/Palestine in this generation" (The New York Review of Books)

The very name of the Israel Defense Forces—which many Israelis speak of as "the most moral army in the world"—suggests that its primary mission is the defense of the country's territory. Indeed, both internationally and within Israel, support for the occupation of Palestinian territory rests on the belief that the army's actions and presence in the West Bank and Gaza are essentially defensive and responsive, aimed at protecting the country from terror.

But Israeli soldiers themselves tell a profoundly different story. In this landmark work, which includes hundreds of soldiers' testimonies collected over a decade, what emerges is a broad policy that is anything but defensive. In their own words, the soldiers reveal in human and vivid detail how the key planks of the army's ostensibly protective program—"prevention of terror," "separation of populations," "preservation of the fabric of life," and "law enforcement"—have in fact served to accelerate acquisition of Palestinian land, cripple all normal political and social life, and ultimately thwart the possibility of independence.

The many soldiers who have spoken out have taken aim at a silence of complicity, both within Israel and in the wider world, that perpetuates the justification for occupation. In the process, they have created a gripping and immediate record of oppression. Powerful and incontrovertible, Our Harsh Logic is a supremely significant contribution to one of the world's most vexed conflicts.


BOOK EXCERPTS

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1. Stun grenades at three in the morning

UNIT: PARATROOPERS
LOCATION: NABLUS DISTRICT
YEAR: 2003

We did all kinds of very sketchy work in Area A.* That could mean, for example, going into Tubas on a Friday, when the market is packed, to set up a surprise checkpoint in the middle of the village. One time, we arrived to set up a checkpoint like that on Friday morning, and we started to spread out: inspecting vehicles and every car that passed. Three hundred meters from us some kids start a small demonstration. They throw rocks at us, but they come maybe ten meters and don’t

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Breaking the Silence, one of Israel's most internationally lauded NGOs, was established in Jerusalem in 2004 by Israel Defense Forces veterans to document the testimonies of Israeli soldiers who have served in the occupied territories.

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Our Harsh Logic

Israeli Soldiers' Testimonies from the Occupied Territories, 2000-2010

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Metropolitan Books

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