IDF is yet again on the defensive over its troops’ use of social media, after an elite regiment soldier posted pictures of himself half-naked, and smoking drugs on his Instagram, and boasted about killing an Arab on Twitter.
The pro-Palestinian news resource Electronic Intifada mined publicly available images and comments of Osher Maman, a 20 year-old private in the Golani Brigade, who recently moved from the US to Israel on a special military recruitment program.
Maman, who calls himself a “hitman/assassin” in one of his public posts says he joined the elite unit “to beat up terrorists and sh*t”.
In one tweet from January last year, he boasts “Just took an Arab out… Whataa a feeling.”
His Instagram feed features a mock-up of a popular WWII poster that says “Keep Calm and Take Over Gaza” and a map of the territory, which the Israeli Defense Force left in 2005, with the Hebrew inscription “Soon to be a giant theme park.”
The soldier has since been reprimanded by his superiors, and all the social media accounts have been taken down.
“This is a grave incident, which does not represent the IDF,” said Capt. Eytan Buchman, a military spokesman, who noted that an investigation into the private’s behavior is ongoing.
Maman’s feed also contained pictures, apparently taken by others with access to the armory, of the soldier naked, covering his genitals with the barrel of a gun, and rifles arranged into a Star of David.
Another set shows Maman smoking what appears to be a joint in his hand (an Army offense) and showing off a clump of marijuana in his palm.
The controversy comes only days after another 20 year-old soldier was investigated for posting a picture of what appears to be an Arab boy in the crosshairs of a rifle. The soldier, Mor Ostrovski, said he found the picture on the internet.
The same explanation is unlikely to wash for Maman’s highly-personalized photo collection.