Documentary: “The Hannibal Directive” – An Israeli Occupation Policy used in Gaza in 2014

By Ariyana Love
The Hannibal Directive is a documentary that was produced by Israeli’s and published recently, by Al Jazeera. The Hannibal Directive was a top-secret military order used by the Israeli army at least two times during Operation Protective Edge (as the Israeli occupation called it).
The documentary was made perhaps out of the need for damage control after a backlash of heavy criticism from within the Israeli society, after the occupation unleashed this barbaric policy in Gaza, in 2014.
Because there is no Palestinian narrative within the documentary, it works more as a “normalization” of Israeli policy, serving to control the public narrative and whitewash the brutally obscene actions of war criminals against the defenceless civilian population.
It appears that certain individuals within the Israeli system may desire to see reform of this barbaric policy, however, it still remains a severe war crime, crime against humanity and possibly genocide.
529964361_1280x720An area of Rafah after the Black Friday pogrom.
The two times the Hannibal Directive was invoked in 2014, were also the two biggest pogroms during the “war.” In Rafah, hundreds of civilians were killed and hundreds more wounded in just a few short hours of hellfire, known to Palestinians as Black Friday. Although they won’t admit it, Israel even breeched an international ceasefire in order to massacre the town.
The other pogrom which took place in Al Shejaiyah, Gaza’s Eastern boarder, was likened to “Armageddon” by it’s survivors.

The Hannibal Directive documentary:

Article below from Al Jazeera:
First devised in 1986 by three senior army commanders, it stipulated measures to be taken when an Israeli soldier was captured during combat. Its purpose was to prevent the enemy from escaping with that soldier, even if it meant endangering the soldier’s life and the lives of civilians in the vicinity.
The order was last executed during the 2014 Gaza War – known in Israel as Operation Protective Edge. During that conflict, more than 2,000 Palestinians and 72 Israelis were killed.
On Friday August 1, 2014, at Rafah in the south of Gaza, the Israeli Army invoked the Hannibal Directive to try to stop Hamas fighters from fleeing with a captured Israeli officer.
The unprecedented ferocity of the action that followed cost the lives of least 135 civilians – 75 of them children. Amnesty International and other NGOs have described the events of that day, “Black Friday”, as a war crime.
This film, by award-winning director Benny Brunner, explores the secret history of the Hannibal Directive – tracing its origins, its most recent use and how it has been applied.
The documentary was made in 2015 amid mounting controversy about the application and morality of the doctrine – a dispute which eventually led to the order being quietly rescinded by the Israeli military in June 2016. It contains interviews with former Israeli soldiers, reservists and civilians who were at the time increasingly divided over whether such a brutal policy, which led to the deaths of so many innocent civilians, could ever be justified.  
Original article 
MER recommends other articles from Al Jazeera


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Ariyana Love is a researcher/writer with The Liberty Beacon Project. She is Directing Middle East Rising & Occupy Palestine TV news channels. Ariyana is a human rights defender and Goodwill Ambassador to Palestine. She is also Chairman of an international foundation promoting humanitarian projects in the occupied Palestinian territory.

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