The Israel Defense Forces has denied allegations that it trains its canines to attack anybody heard saying Allah Hu Akbar, Arabic for ‘God is great.’
Israeli Arab MK Ahmed Tibi on Monday told the Knesset plenum that at a canine unit ceremony held the day before, parents of the soldiers witnessed demonstrations proving these allegations.
“IDF dogs are trained to pounce and attack any Arab who shouts Allah Hu Akbar, as a Pavlovian reaction,” said Tibi. “So here I say: Allah Hu Akbar. Are there any dogs here to attack me?”
Speculations of such practice were exposed first by Israel Radio’s military correspondent, Carmela Menashe.
Responding to the allegations, the IDF said in a statement: “One of the canine unit’s many capabilities is to train the dogs at locating the enemy when dressed both in uniform and as civilian. This is an ability that has proven itself in many cases.