Over the last several days, the spotlight around the globe is on the US and its increasingly violence-filled response to the protesters (and some violent rioters).
Amnesty International reported something noteworthy, where did most of these police officers that are showing increasing brutality receive their training and, more important, by whom?
Well, look no further than Israel.
Many of them traveled to Israel to receive training, but quite a few Israeli specialists traveled to the US and provided training for police officers in how to apply crowd control.
After all, Israel’s national police, military and intelligence services are experts in crowd control, use of force and surveillance, and quite adept at “respecting Palestinian’s human rights” by carrying out constant violations.
Baltimore law enforcement officials, along with hundreds of others from Florida, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, California, Arizona, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Georgia, Washington state as well as the DC Capitol police have all traveled to Israel for training. Thousands of others have received training from Israeli officials here in the U.S.
Many of these trips were funded by the same people the police are now beating in the streets – the taxpayers.
However, some are privately-funded.
Since 2002, the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee’s Project Interchange and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs have paid for police chiefs, assistant chiefs and captains to train in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).
Essentially, the trainings provided first-hand experience in how to deal with crowds and protesting masses by one of the authorities that have received hundreds, if not thousands of accusations of human rights abuses over years of history.
“Amnesty International, other human rights organizations and even the U.S. Department of State have cited Israeli police for carrying out extrajudicial executions and other unlawful killings, using ill treatment and torture (even against children), suppression of freedom of expression/association including through government surveillance, and excessive use of force against peaceful protesters.”
The Department of Justice report cited Baltimore police for using aggressive tactics that “escalate encounters and stifle public cooperation.”
In this way, the police would then apply unreasonable force during clashes with protesters over minor disobedience.
The report details how an overall lack of training leads to excessive force being used against those with mental health issues, juveniles and people who present “little or no threat against others,” such as those already restrained.
And this came at a time when Israeli police killed an autistic Palestinian man.
The body of Iyad Halak, 32, was buried late on May 31st.
He was shot dead the day before, reportedly after becoming confused by shouting police and fleeing in a panic to hide among rubbish bins.
Israeli police said in a statement they had spotted a “suspect with a suspicious object that looked like a pistol”.
“They called upon him to stop and began to chase after him on foot, during the chase officers also opened fire at the suspect, who was neutralised,” the statement said.
Warda Abu Hadid, Halak’s caregiver, told Israeli media she had tried to alert police to the fact that he was severely autistic and did not understand their calls.
“He’s disabled, disabled,” she recalled shouting repeatedly, in Hebrew. “Wait a moment, take his ID card, check his ID.”
“Suddenly they fired three bullets at him, in front of my eyes,” she told Channel 13. “I shouted: ‘Don’t shoot him.’ They didn’t listen; they didn’t want to hear.”
After shooting at Halak, the police pointed their guns towards her, she claimed.
“They came up to me, pressed their guns against me and said: ‘Give us the pistol he gave you.’”
Which could remind of how the mother of a black man attempted to save his son’s life back in 2016, when there were calls to the police regarding his outbursts of “rage.” The man is also autistic.
And all of this, both for the US and Israel is reinforced heavily by one thing: lack of accountability.
The Baltimore Police Department has shown “systemic deficiencies” in “accountability structures” and this is not an isolated incident, since Derek Chauvin from Minneapolis had several infractions for which he received little to no punishment, until he ultimately killed the handcuffed George Floyd.
Meanwhile, rioters and protesters in front of the White House forced US President Donald and his aides to hide in a bunker, leaving the building with darkened windows, and refusing any accountability, instead taking authorities’ side and leaving the situation to potentially escalate further.
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