The disturbing footage depicts ululating Iraqi soldiers towering over a clearly terrified child, named as Muhammad Ali Al-Hadidi by activists, who is covered in sand and is raising his hands in fear in a vain attempt to defend himself.
Muhammad is then dragged through the desert before being hurled in front of a US-made Iraqi tank as the soldiers appear to be shouting sectarian slurs against the child, a Sunni. Muhammad is placed head first in front of the tank’s left-hand tracks.
The soldiers then open fire in Muhammad’s general vicinity, before ordering the tank driver to move his vehicle over the defenceless child while telling each other, “Film me! Film me!”
Intentionally torturing, killing, maiming and mutilating children during war is a war crime, a violation of international humanitarian law and a breach of children’s rights.
Social media reacts
The footage has caused uproar in the Middle East, with Arab Twitter users launching an Arabic hashtag of “#CrushedByATank” that was trending all throughout last night just after the incident was released.
An Iraqi journalist, Iyad Al-Dulaimi, tweeted: “#CrushedByATank isn’t anything new for the slaves of Qom and Tehran, as they also tore apart the body of an Iraqi prisoner by tying him to two trucks that each drove in opposing directions”