Vandals Deface Display for Captured IDF Soldier Gilad Shalit

Posters ripped down and cardboard cut-out of Gilad Shalit stolen from protest tent at Prime Minister's residence in Jerusalem.

A display supporting captured Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit was vandalized late Thursday night at the Shalit family protest tent in front of the Prime Minister's residence in Jerusalem. Police have begun to investigate the incident.

Gilad Shalit was captured by Gaza militants in 2006. Hamas, the rulers of Gaza, have demanded that Israel release hundreds of Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails in exchange for the soldier's freedom.

shalit - Dror Artzi - October 18 2010
Dror Artzi

Ohad Kenner, one of the leading activists in support of Shalit's release said that he arrived at the site at seven in the morning and found the display completely ruined. A life-size image of Shalit inside of a jail cell was stolen from the display and posters were ripped down.

"The display is made from wood and metal poles, and its destruction would make a lot of noise," Kenner said. "It is mind-boggling that we are talking about a location with some of the highest security levels in the whole country, and despite this, those unfeeling people had time to do what they did, and no one bothered to ask them what they were doing."

Kadima MK Otniel Schneller said in response to the incident that "the people who vandalized the display are wretched, without morals or conscience." Schneller added that  "we're talking about scoundrels that don't know the meaning of morals, I doubt they have a shred of conscience."