The photos paired above are posted as they appear at the Telegraph today. Today is a day for a study in contrasts between Israel and the various Palestinian factions: the treatment of prisoners, the value of human life, and the contrast in fundamental values: Shalit was a solider in the wrong place at the wrong time, abducted and held hostage by jihadist, terrorist thugs. The Palestinian prisoners were in prison for a reason — many reasons, including murder.
Above all, today illustrates the intensity of the double standard to which Israel is held among its neighbors; for so many, however far backward Israel bends will never be “good enough” so long as it so rudely insists on continuing to exist.
“Israeli military: Schalit suffering malnutrition,” by Daniella Cheslow for the Associated Press, October 18:
TEL NOF AIR BASE, Israel (AP) “” An Israeli military official says the freed Israeli soldier, Sgt. Gilad Schalit, is showing signs of malnutrition and lack of exposure to the sun after five years in Hamas captivity.
Schalit was examined by military doctors after being freed earlier Tuesday by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity under military protocol.
Schalit has appeared weak, pale and extremely thin in an Egyptian TV interview and video clips released by the Israeli military. […]
Gilad Schalit, in a brief interview with Egyptian TV before being transferred to Israel, said he was “very excited” to taste freedom and had missed his family and friends. He said he feared he would remain in captivity “many more years” and worried since being told of the deal last week that last-minute hitches might cause it to collapse.
“Of course I missed my family. I missed friends, meeting people to talk to people, and not to sit all day, to do the same things,” he said.
But Schalit’s physical appearance raised questions about the condition of his captivity in the hands of the Hamas militant group. The 25-year-old appeared pale and gaunt, shifted in his seat, struggled to breathe and seemed to mumble as he answered the questions.
Later, video released by the military showed him being helped into an army jeep after crossing the border into Israel, and walking gingerly down a set of steps from a military caravan after changing his clothes into a fresh army uniform. Still, military officials said a physical exam had found him to be in good shape.
Later, he was flown on a helicopter to an air base in central Israel for a reunion with his family hosted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Netanyahu told an audience that he understood the pain of Israeli families who lost relatives in Palestinian violence, but that Israel’s ethos of doing everything possible to bring its soldiers home safely forced him to act.
He also issued a staunch warning to the freed militants. “We will continue to fight terror and every released terrorist who returns to terror will be held accountable,” he said.
Those concerns were underscored with comments by one of the freed prisoners, Hamas militant leader Yehia Sinwar, who called on the movement to kidnap more soldiers….