A Pro-Palestinian news site identified the photographer as a 20-year-old Israeli sniper.
A photo purportedly taken from the Instagram of an Israeli sniper shows a Palestinian boy in the crosshairs of a rifle.
An Israeli soldier posted an Instagram photo purportedly showing a Palestinian boy's head in the crosshairs of his rifle scope, prompting an apology from the Israeli military.
The chilling image, which shows the back of the boy's head, was posted by a 20-year-old Israeli sniper named Mor Ostrovski, according to pro-Palestinian news site The Electronic Intifada.
It doesn't appear that sniper actually pulled the trigger, the site said.
The Israel Defense Forces said in a statement they were investigating the photo, adding that the soldier's actions "are not in accordance with the spirit of the IDF or its values," Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported.
Ostrovski shut down his Instagram account after the photo went viral over the weekend.
He insisted he not take the picture, but that he found it on the web and posted to his account, The Guardian reported.
The Electronic Intifada published a handful of other photos they claimed were taken from the solider's account, including stylized shots of him posing with assault weapons and a close-up of a hand loading a bullet into a sniper rifle.
Members of Breaking the Silence, a group of IDF vets who seek to raise awareness about life in the occupied territories, condemned the photo, saying it displayed "clear contempt for human life and human dignity."
“This is what military control over a civilian population looks like," the group said on its Facebook page.
The photo scandal was the latest in a series of social media flaps involving Israeli soldiers.
Last week, another soldier was sentenced to 14 days in military prison for posting a Facebook photo showing him posing with a group of bound and blindfolded Palestinian detainees.
In December, Electronic Intifada surfaced racy and offensive photos it said were taken from the social media accounts of a young Israeli soldier in the West Bank.
In one shot, the soldier was shown licking what looked to be either red jam or tomato sauce off a knife along with a caption, "F-all Arabs their blood is tasty."