Treiman: Noam Shalit Didn’t Say He Would Kidnap Israelis If He Were Palestinian


noam-shalitBritain’s Guardian newspaper had a story that was picked up by various outlets around the world. The headline: “Gilad Shalit’s father: I would kidnap Israelis if I were Palestinian.”

The story’s first sentence reported that Noam Shalit “said he would kidnap Israeli soldiers if he were a Palestinian.” According to The Guardian, Noam Shalit made the statement in a television interview.

But Daniel Treiman writes at JTA that the only direct quote The Guardian provides on the topic doesn’t by itself substantiate the sensational headline. The quote is: “We also kidnapped British soldiers when we were fighting for our freedom.” This, says Treiman, is a statement of historical fact, not an assertion of what Shalit would or would not do in the event of a hypothetical change of nationality.

“Moreover,” writes Treiman on JTA’s website, “I couldn’t find any English-language Israeli outlet that had reported on Shalit’s statement — surprising given the provocative nature of the words being attributed to him by The Guardian. So I was a little suspicious.”

Treiman had a Hebrew-speaking colleague track down the interview with Israel’s Channel 10 and he says that Shalit didn’t quite say what The Guardian says he said.

Following is a transcript (translated from Hebrew) of what Shalit actually said, according to Treiman’s translator:

Q. So you support talking to Hamas?

Shalit: I support talking to anyone.

Q. Including Hamas?

Shalit: Including Hamas. Everyone who wants to talk with us.

Q. As a Knesset member, would you go out tomorrow to talk with [Hamas Prime Minister Ismail] Haniyeh?

Shalit: Haniyeh’s not yet ready to recognize us. Unfortunately, it hasn’t happened yet.

Q. And if he recognizes us?

Shalit: If and when we get the bridge, we’ll cross it. Of course.

Q. That is, even if the kidnappers of Gilad themselves one day are senior officials in the Palestinian administration and agree to recognize Israel, you would sit with them as an Israeli Knesset member.

Shalit: Presumably — I said that if they change their ways and are prepared to recognize us and recognize that there is a Jewish state, that there’s Israel, there’s the State of Israel, yes, and they stop the war against then yes – absolutely.

Q. Shake his hand?

Shalit: Yes.

Shalit: How did Barak say? If I were Palestinian, it’s possible I too would be a terrorist or a freedom fighter — how they call them — or something else.

Q: If you were a Hamasnik, would you abduct an Israeli soldier?

Shalit: I don’t know but maybe I would fight IDF forces in a different way, I don’t know.

Q: But you don’t rule it out.

Shalit: If I were a Palestinian?

Q: Yes, abducting a soldier to release prisoners.

Shalit: We also kidnapped British officers way back when, when we were fighting for our freedom.

Q: You’re a cold fish.

Shalit: Thanks.

Treiman concludes: “So, to recap: Shalit didn’t really say that he would kidnap an Israeli soldier if he were a Palestinian. When asked by the interviewer whether he would do such a thing, he gave equivocal responses. He said he didn’t know what he would do if he were a Palestinian but suggested that he might have tried to fight the Israeli army ‘in a different way.’ Asked whether he would rule out kidnapping, he noted – factually – that Jewish fighters kidnapped British officers during the British Mandate period. So he didn’t categorically say he wouldn’t kidnap Israeli soldiers if he were a Palestinian, but – contra The Guardian – he also didn’t say he would.”

Treiman’s full report for JTA can be seen here.

{Noam Newscenter}


  1. From the context it seems thats exactly what Shalit was suggesting

    This is what happens to someone who becomes a politician, they will say ridicules things

    The comparison between Chamas kidnapping and the British soldiers kidnapping is way out of line. Chamas is the aggressor, we are not in their land, they are free in their/our land!

    Israel was fighting for their freedom in the 1940s. Americans were fighting Britain in the 1700s, they were fighting for the freedom. The Arabs are not fighting for “freedom” they want the Jews dead!!!!

  2. How much money is Matzav getting for keeping that drunken guy on the right hand side of the screen shaking his head in a drunken stupor?
    Shame on Matzav!

  3. The whole argument is silly.
    As my kids say,”If Grandma had 4 wheels, she’d be a trolley car!”
    If anyone would be a Palestinian with their mindset they possibly would act like a Palestinian.
    If any of us were Nazis, who knows what we would have done?
    That doesn’t justify them at all, they are just as much reshaim, but may explains what they were trying to get Noam to say.
    Boruch Hashem we were born as Yidden and we are happy and proud to think (and hopefully act) like one!

  4. a yid cannot possibly have such achzarius at their funerals they scream for murder and blood and look at the dignity of the kvura of those kdoshim from toulouse rabbi rosenberg said what does H want from us even though he lost his children the holtzbergs he directs his attention to H K B H a yid cannot make believe he is one oe thse plestinians or nazis his mind can t go there