Israeli military police have closed an investigation into soldiers' accounts of abuses committed in Gaza, saying they were based on hearsay.
An Israeli military college published the accounts, which included claims that soldiers fired on civilians and vandalised property.
The probe concluded that the stories were "purposely exaggerated".
"The climate in general... I don't know how to describe it.... the lives of Palestinians, let's say, are much, much less important than the lives of our soldiers," an infantry squad leader was quoted saying in reports carried in Israeli newspapers.
While academy director Dany Zamir told public radio that "[the testimonies] conveyed an atmosphere in which one feels entitled to use unrestricted force against Palestinians".
Testimonies, which were given by combat pilots and infantry soldiers, also included allegations of unnecessary destruction of Palestinian property.
"We would throw everything out of the windows to make room and order. Everything... refrigerators, plates, furniture. The order was to throw all of the house's contents outside," a soldier said.
Heavy civilian casualties during the three-week operation which ended in the blockaded coastal strip on 18 January have provoked an international outcry.
17 hours ago