Ex-soldier to Face Off With IDF General Accused of Raping Her

Top army officer Brig. Gen. Ofek Buchris and former subordinate who accused him of rape both agreed to confrontation.

Ofek Buchris, 2010.
Itzik Ben Malki

The Military Police plan to arrange a confrontation between Brig. Gen. Ofek Buchris and the former soldier who has accused him of rape and other grave sexual offenses.

Both Buchris and the complainant, who served under him when he commanded the Golani Brigade, have agreed to the confrontation, which is expected to advance the investigation. However, no date has yet been set for it.

Buchris has been questioned in the case twice, most recently on Wednesday for five hours. He is suspected of five counts of rape, sexual assault and sodomy over a lengthy period of time.

The complainant also gave police the name of another woman who had served under Buchris in the Golani Brigade. The Military Police asked that woman, an officer, if she would testify, and she did so earlier this week.

In her testimony, the second woman said Buchris had sexually harassed her. The Military Police may try to arrange a confrontation between her and Buchris as well.

Buchris has denied all the allegations against him, and at a military court hearing this week, he backed his denial with the results of a polygraph test he commissioned privately. He hasn’t yet been asked to take a second polygraph test overseen by the Military Police, but has said he is willing to do so if asked.

In the polygraph test he took earlier this week, Buchris was asked two questions about the first complainant – whether he had “full intercourse” with her, and whether he slept with her. He answered both negatively, and the person who conducted the test concluded that he was telling the truth.

The complainant told the Military Police that she is also prepared to undergo a polygraph test if asked.

Next week, Buchris was supposed to begin a new job as head of the IDF’s operations division. This is considered one of the army’s most important posts, as it is involved in all the IDF’s battle-related activity, and also in how resources are divided among various units. But due to the allegations against him, he was suspended from the army on Monday.

Thus for now, Brig. Gen. Aharon Haliva will remain in charge of the operations division. After handing over to Buchris, Haliva was supposed to be promoted to major general and join the General Staff as head of the technological and logistics directorate.