IDF Officers Take to Facebook to Support Soldier Who Drew Hitler

The new page, created after the cadet was expelled for drawing the Nazi leader, seeks to create a place where soldiers can 'doodle without fear.'

The Facebook page 'Officers drawing Hitler'
The Facebook page 'Officers drawing Hitler' Screenshot

An IDF cadet who was expelled for doodling Hitler has found support from an unlikely Facebook page: "Officers draw Hitler."

The Hebrew-language page says in its description that in light of the incident at the Bahad-1 base, it seeks to create a place where "one can doodle freely."

"We believe any person – citizen, soldier or officer – has the right to an independent opinion and free expression," the creators wrote. They nevertheless stressed that the page is satirical, adding that it aims to raise awareness regarding the issue of freedom of expression in the IDF and in general."

Numerous doodles of Hitler can already be found on the site, including one of Hitler riding a songbird, a cross between Hitler and cartoon figure Dora and an image of the Nazi leader sketched on a bullet.

The incident took place last summer at the IDF’s officer training base, when the soldier sketched the offensive drawing alongside caricatures of David Ben-Gurion, Mickey Mouse, Moshe Dayan and Harry Potter in his notebook.

Following a comprehensive investigation of the incident both the cadet who drew the caricatures and the one who framed them were expelled, the latter because of “trust problems” that emerged during the probe.

The cadet asserted that he saw nothing wrong with drawing Hitler’s image alongside those of the others, and that during the company talk he had felt bored and sought to pass the time by sketching. He recalled that at the end of class he meant to throw out the drawings, but one of his colleagues was impressed by their quality and asked to keep them. He also told his officers that he is the grandson of Holocaust survivors, and added that he had taken an active part in the educational series the cadets completed at Yad Vashem, and had even cried there.