The IDF no longer even pretends it’s trying 13Jan14 January 13, 2014

+972 Blog      -     12 January 2014

trapped5A case of man bites dog: on Tuesday, January 7, in the village of Qusra, Palestinians united in order to defend themselves from a group of Israeli marauders, taking the latter captive, and turning them over to the authorities. The rare event drew significant media attention.

However one point did not get the attention it required: The IDF told Haaretz newspaper (Hebrew) that “an observation post identified the settlers, some of whom were hooded, descending towards the village, but then eye contact with them was lost.”

You get that? The IDF identified a group of masked people heading toward a Palestinian village, and in response it did… nothing. The army entered the picture only after the raiders’ plans had been disrupted, in order to return them to their homes. That is, as far the Israeli army – which effectively is the sovereign over the West Bank – is concerned, it is perfectly reasonable that masked men will pass by its apathetic eyes to raid a Palestinian village.

Had the villagers of Qusra not congregated to protect their persons and property, the incident would have ended with more damage to Palestinian property and perhaps more wounding of Palestinians – and it seems the IDF would not have cared that much. Now let’s try and imagine the opposite scenario: masked Palestinians creep toward a settlement. Do you think in this case the IDF observer would consider it sufficient to inform command that it had “lost eye contact” with the suspicious masked group?

Once, the IDF – which according to international treaties and High Court of Justice instructions is entrusted with protecting the Palestinian population in the Occupied Territories – would at least pretend to try to protect them from the settlers’ daily terrorism. Seems it has stopped even pretending.

Perhaps because the truth is much worse: this blog has reported numerous incidents of IDF troops providing protection to Jewish marauders while they have attacked Palestinian villages. The following footage, taken by B’Tselem volunteers, brings the incident to life. As reported here, the soldiers react with apathy to the masked Jewish civilians stoning Palestinians – and when the Palestinians try to react in defense, the soldiers fire tear gas canisters at them.

So it goes.

Written by Yossi Gurvitz in his capacity as a blogger for Yesh Din, Volunteers for Human Rights. A version of this post was first published on Yesh Din’s blog.


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