By Meron Rapaport
An Israel Defense Forces deputy brigade commander confiscated the Government Press Office-issued press card of an Israeli journalist, informing him that he was revoking his card and ordering that he be arrested for terming him “insolent.” The director of the Association of Israeli Journalists, Yossi Bar-Moha, defined the incident as severe, and as one that “can only take place in totalitarian states.”
The incident occured last Friday during a demonstration in the Palestinian village of Bili’in and involved cameraman Shai Carmeli Pollack, who is filming a documentary for Channel 8 on the protests against the fence. During the course of the demonstration, Pollack exchanged words with IDF officers about the way in which the security forces were dealing with the protesters and their demand t Brigade deputy commander Shai Malka then asked Pollack if he was a journalist. On receiving an affirmative response, Malka said, “I am revoking your press card.” Malka then ordered that Pollack be arrested, and seized his credentials, accusing him also of insulting a public official.
This was Pollack’s third arrest during demonstrations against the fence.
“Clearly the IDF doesn’t want coverage of what is happening there,” said Adi Arbel, program director for Channel 8.