“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Saturday, July 06, 2013

Such is the quality of life for minorities in a racist apartheid state. Land grabs, police and army brutality, humiliation and ghetto styled open air prisons. Recognition to the WaPo for reporting these indignities.

Israel debates ‘price-tag’ attacks on Muslims

By William Booth and Ruth Eglash
Published: July 5 
ABU GHOSH, Israel — Ibrahim Hamza was up before first light. When he went out to his truck, he thought it was a simple flat tire. But it didn’t take long for Hamza, from one of the founding Muslim families who settled this village west of Jerusalem centuries ago, to realize that the tires had been slashed on 28 vehicles on his street.
Before the media — along with the police and later the president of Israel — began to arrive, Hamza and his neighbors found the spray-painted graffiti, in Hebrew, scrawled on a nearby stone wall: “Racism or Diaspora.” The English translation doesn’t quite convey the message, which is closer to “Get out or else.”

The vandalism two weeks ago in Abu Ghosh is part of a growing phenomenon in Israel and the West Bank called “price tag” attacks. Initially, these actsof vandalism — spray-painting mosques, desecrating cemeteries, burning Korans, chopping down olive trees — were part of a campaign, assumed to be waged by Jewish extremists, to extract retribution for actions against Jewish settlements in the West Bank. The idea was that anytime the Israel Defense Forces removed an illegal outpost or Palestinian militants attacked settlers, somebody would pay a price.
Now, the attacks are growing and so are the targets, which include not only Muslims in the West Bank and Israel, but left-leaning activists, as well as Christian schools, churches and monasteries, which vandals have tagged with graffiti.
According to civil rights groups, price-tag attacks have grown from a handful in 2008 to 23 so far this year. One group counts more than 20 incidents at mosques and churches since 2010. There were three price-tag incidents in June in neighborhoods and towns around Jerusalem.
Israeli society is grappling with what to call the assaults. Are they “terrorism” or “hooliganism”? Or, as they are labeled now, “a criminal incident with nationalistic motives”?
Beyond semantics, the question is made more urgent by the fact that few perpetrators have been arrested, despite the prowess of the Israeli army, police and domestic intelligence services.
In a country where security cameras are ubiquitous and thick dossiers are amassed on Palestinian teenagers who throw rocks, many Israelis suspect the reason why more Jewish vandals are not arrested is that the state is not very interested in doing so.
In a poll released this week by Israel’s Channel 10 News, almost 60 percent of those surveyed agreed that the government “didn’t really want to catch” price-tag attackers.
There have been a few arrests. The most recent was Monday, when a 22-year-old Israeli was detained in connection with a price-tag attack at the Monastery of the Silent Monks at Latrun in September. Assailants torched the monastery’s doors and spray-painted
“Jesus is a monkey” and the word “Migron,” a reference to an unauthorized settler outpost forcibly evacuated by the Israeli army in September.
Many Israelis and Palestinians wonder who might be inspiring these acts. Suspicions fall upon ultranationalists and radical rabbis.

This summer, the debate over how to confront the price-tag phenomenon entered Israel’s parliament, where Justice Minister Tzipi Livni is pushing legislation to label the price-tag crimes as acts of terror. That would grant Israeli agencies sweeping authority to tap telephones, search without warrants and hold suspects without charges.

On Monday, Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon announced that price-tag attacks in Israel could be defined as “illegal organizing,” meaning that Jewish perpetrators could face the same legal repercussions as Palestinian terrorists. Judges could hand down harsh sentences — not just a few months, but years in prison.

Many Israelis, however, think that goes too far.

Dani Dayan, the former director of the Yesha Council, an umbrella organization of municipal councils of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, said that price-tag assaults are generally against property and should be treated as “extreme vandalism” or even “a hate crime.”

Dayan called the attacks “despicable from a moral point of view” and “very, very dumb.” He said nothing has hurt the settlement movement more than price-tag attacks, which cast settlers as racist vandals.

Still, he said, to Israelis “terrorism is a suicide bomber in a crowded mall or someone who shoots people.” Dayan said a price-tag attack that involves deadly force — as when Jewish radicals have thrown a fire bomb at Israeli soldiers — should be considered terrorism, but not spray painting and tire slashing. “There’s no comparison between this and real Palestinian terrorism,” he said.

Immediately after the tires were slashed in Abu Ghosh, Israeli politicians and government ministers rushed to apologize and promise that the culprits would be caught.

Israeli President Shimon Peres went to Ibrahim Hamza’s house and said he was sorry that the town was subjected to such a crime.
Israelis with historical memory were especially stung that a price-tag attack would befall Abu Ghosh, whose Muslim residents remained neutral in Israel’s 1948 War of Independence and helped to keep a crucial roadway through the village open during fighting against Arab forces.

“Jewish Israelis were very upset to hear what happened here,” said Salim Jaber, the long-serving mayor of Abu Ghosh. The town is a popular destination with Israelis and tourists who want to eat some of the best hummus in the country, or visit the old crusader church, or watch the construction of a large new mosque, a gift from Chechnya.

Jaber said that security cameras in the town captured shadowy images of three men in the vicinity of the crime scene. At least one was sporting tzizit, the white tassels worn by ultra-Orthodox Jews.

“These are the kinds of people who want us to hate Jews, hate Israel. But we are smarter than that,” Jaber said. He scoffed at the idea — “a sick fantasy” — that some slashed tires would make Muslims leave Abu Ghosh.
But he said Israeli authorities must catch the perpetrators.

“If the government doesn’t solves these cases, they’re going to have a big problem,” said Jawdat Ibrahim, the owner of an Abu Ghosh restaurant who set a Guinness World Record for the largest serving of hummus (9,016 pounds) in 2010.

“It is unbelievable to us that Israel can catch enemies, very sophisticated enemies, overseas, but they can’t catch a bunch of punks who live here,” Ibrahim said. “These attacks happen in an atmosphere, maybe an atmosphere that says, ‘Hey, it’s okay, you’re never gonna get caught.’ ”


  1. .

    I read this article earlier and there appears to be some selective editing here.

    There are a couple key points made in the article. One that it is not just Palestinians that are the target of the 'price tag' attacks but also Christians. The second is that very little has been done to punish the perpetrators.

    On the other hand, you have left off page two of the article which indicated Israeli government officials went to Abu Ghosh to apologize personally for the attacks. Also, that there is a push in Israel to classify these events as terrorist attacks or at a minimum hate crimes.

    While not much has been done so far to curb these crimes it appears that Israel is aware of how serious they are and are planning to take steps to curb them.


    1. .

      Waiting to see what happens.


    2. The second page did not show because I was putting the post up in pieces to maintain the format and did not hit the update button . Corrected.

    3. .

      Just so there's no misunderstanding, Deuce, I wasn't waiting to see what happens with you.

      I meant I would be waiting to see what the authorities in Israel did over time.



    4. I know, but the story was reported in Wapo and a very new and interesting video source, Jewish News One. I was looking at a few other videos for other posts.

  2. Israeli housing policy demonstrate apartheid tendencies, institutional discrimination.

  3. Just catching up on the last couple of threads:

    Though many people worry about increases in energy and food bought from abroad, Adly said they do not represent the bulk of the imports.

    “The main issue is not food, but inputs and intermediary products,” said Adly.

    Inputs and intermediary products are goods Egyptian manufacturers need to manufacture a final product for export or domestic consumption. They represented 46 percent of total imports in 2011/12.

    Wheat and maize, the two main imported food products, were 6.3 percent. Energy was 17 percent.

    However, food and energy imports weigh heavily on the Egyptian budget, because subsidized food and energy represented 28 percent of all governmental expenses in 2011/12.

  4. Snowden has a choice of three, Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua. He needs a passport and an itinerary where the US would not be able to intercept the plane.

    He would have to either go to Cuba or back to China. He needs to fly on a Russian or Chinese plane.

    If I were him, I would ask the Bolivians for a travel document (Passport) and go to Venezuela via Havana on Russian planes.

  5. wow the spray paint war crimes...

    sprayed in response to murder and rape...

    One standard for Jews. No standards for anyone else.

    This blog should be renamed: The Crimes of the Jewish State. After all you are a one trick pony.

    1. .

      sprayed in response to murder and rape...

      I haven't seen any stories of Christians murdering and raping Jews in the West Bank. I would have thought you would be posting them if there were.


    2. Sorry for the lack of clarity.

      The arabs murder and rape the christians. But the so called "christians" of the west bank? Are so infested by palestinian arabism they are part and parcel part of the Jew hating chorus.

    3. .


      Now I get it.



    4. .

      Perhaps you could clarify two other things.

      First, the prime minister of Israel, the president, various ministers, the head of the police, judges, various newspapers have all condemned these attacks. Are you trying to rationalize them?


      Abu Ghosh is a village (town?) populated by Arabs, Christians, and Jews (I read about 60 families). In a couple of papers it seemed to be saying the residents are Jewish citizens. Is this true?


  6. Such is the quality of life for minorities in a racist apartheid state.

    Egypt: Coptic Christian priest shot dead
    A Coptic Christian priest in Egypt's Northern Sinai has been shot dead, in what could be the first sectarian attack since the military overthrow of Islamist Mohammed Morsi.

  7. Such is the quality of life for minorities in a racist apartheid state. police and army brutality, humiliation and ghetto styled open air prisons

    At least 35 people died and more than 1,000 were wounded in the latest violence, with the army struggling to maintain order in Cairo, Alexandria and other cities and towns, where rival demonstrators fought street battles.

    The most deadly clashes were in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, where 14 people died and 200 were wounded.

    Oh you were speaking about the spray paint terror attacks by Joos?

    1. Israel has pretenses about being a modern state, an equal and a bastion of western civilization, holding the line for the US , yet conducts herself as 1950’s era South Africa. Your best defense is to make comparison with every crap house in the ME?

    2. 1950's South Africa?


      You just dont let facts get in the way of your propaganda

      Israel does not have ANY similarity to 1950's SA.

      The Reservation of Separate Amenities Act, Act No 49 of 1953, formed part of the apartheid system of racial segregation in South Africa.
      The Act legalized the racial segregation of public premises, vehicles and services. Only public roads and streets were excluded from the Act. Section 3b stated that the facilities for different races did not need to be equal, while Section 3a made it legal not only to supply segregated facilities, but also to completely exclude people, based on their race, from public premises, vehicles or services. In practice the best facilities were reserved for whites while those for other races were inferior.[citation needed]
      Municipalities quickly made use of the Act to pass by-laws that reserved certain areas for whites only.

      Nope... Not Israel

    3. Education was segregated by means of the 1953 Bantu Education Act, which crafted a separate system of education for African students and was designed to prepare black people for lives as a labouring class.[31] In 1959 separate universities were created for black, coloured and Indian people. Existing universities were not permitted to enroll new black students. The Afrikaans Medium Decree of 1974 required the use of Afrikaans and English on an equal basis in high schools outside the homelands.[32]

      Nope not Israel.

    4. Apartheid was a system of legal racial separation which dominated the Republic of South Africa from 1948 until 1993, However, the mechanisms of apartheid were set in place long before 1948, and South Africa continues to deal with the repercussions. Under apartheid, various races were separated into different regions, and discrimination against people of color was not only acceptable, but legally entrenched, with whites having priority housing, jobs, education, and political power. Although South Africa was heavily criticized for the system, it was not until 1991 that the legal system of apartheid began to be broken down, and in 1993 was thrown out altogether with the election of Nelson Mandela, the first black democratically elected President of South Africa. The term is also used more generally around the world to refer to systemic racism which is tolerated, rather than confronted.

      Apartheid is an Afrikaans word meaning “apart” or “separate,” and one of the first pieces of apartheid legislation was the Group Areas Act of 1950, which segregated living spaces, concentrating whites in the cities and forcing people of color into rural areas or the urban fringes. In addition to separating whites from nonwhites, apartheid also separated different races, and fraternization between Africans of different tribes, Asians, and Europeans was frowned upon. Whites and nonwhites held different jobs, lived in different regions, and were subject to different levels of pay, education, and health care. Apartheid paid no attention to former social or residential status, dividing people up by color.

      When nonwhites were pushed out of the urban areas, most of them were shuffled into Bantustans, or “African homelands.” Because they were made citizens of the Bantustans, black South Africans were not allowed to participate in the government of South Africa, and were forced to carry passes and obey curfew laws if they wanted to travel outside of their homelands. The homelands were also established on land which was largely unusable, and were heavily reliant on South Africa for assistance. Along the fringes of the cities, Africans lived in massive, terrible slums, often separated from their families because only one family member could get a permit to live in the city.

      Nope not Israel

    5. Arabs and Jews have equal rights in Israel.

      they have access to university, jobs, property purchases, government equally.

      Your libel fails again.

      Hard to face the truth.

    6. Try visiting israel, you might learn something.

  8. ghetto styled open air prisons

    Prisoners' rights[edit]

    The conditions in Israeli prisons are reported to meet international standards.[5] Prisoners are entitled to visits from their lawyers and family members, and security prisoners are allowed Red Cross visits. They have the right to file grievances about their conditions to the courts, the Israel Prison Service management and the Israel Police Unit for the Investigation of Prison Service Personnel.[6]
    Inmates who were not convicted of terror offenses also have the right to free university education; under a special education program in which they take online academic programs from the Open University of Israel, and their tuition is financed by prison authorities. This right was also allowed for imprisoned terrorists until 2011.[7]
    According to the 2011 US Human Rights report, prisoners and detainees were granted access to visitors, with the exception of those whose families live in the Gaza Strip. Prisoners are free to practice their religion, and permitted to submit petitions to judicial authorities if they are dissatisfied with prison conditions.[5] IPS facilities, interrogation facilities and IDF provisional detention centers are regularly monitored by the International Committee of the Red Cross.[5]

    slander is this blog's middle name


      Almost 18,000 prisoners fill the Israel Prison Service’s 32 correctional facilities, with more than two-thirds of convictions related to drug or property crimes. Jews and Israeli-Arabs are housed in the same facilities, and sometimes share a cell as roommates. Israel has its fair share of white-collar crime and auto theft, but national rates for homicide, rape and other violent crimes are lower than in most developed countries.

    2. Not only does Israel maintain fewer prisoners per capita than most Western countries, but released inmates achieve high levels of reintegration into society. Recidivism rates in the US and Europe hover at 75%, with rates in Israel as much as 20% lower. Israeli prisons themselves are less crowded than in most countries, in part due to the release of thousands of Palestinian “security” prisoners in recent years.

      A thread running through Lockup’s Israeli prison interviews is the ability of education, skills-development and job placement to prevent repeat offenses.

    3. Israeli prisons have earned international accolades for innovation in both physical design and rehabilitation programs. At Tzalmon Prison — not featured in the episode — inmates spend most of the day outside their cells, in possession of cell keys and travelling between “campus” facilities for work, sports, dining, etc. A landscaped inner courtyard maintained by inmates allows visiting families to meet in a peaceful atmosphere, a sharp contrast with Hollywood prison-yard scenes.

      Lockup producers were consistently surprised by the level of coziness and normality found in Israeli prisons. Israeli-Arabs are interviewed about their lives in Hebrew, with paintings of large pomegranates and Disney characters filling the walls behind them. One Israeli-Arab inmate spoke about pranks he pulls on the guards, including pilfering cell phones from under their noses and returning them with a laugh.

    4. Such is the quality of life for minorities in a racist apartheid state.

      "Five Years Too Many" campaign leads to global outpouring of support
      13 June 2013
      A global outpouring of support and concern for the plight of the seven Iranian Baha'i leaders – and for the situation of other prisoners of conscience in Iran – marked worldwide commemorations of the fifth anniversary of the arrest of these Baha'is.

      Statements calling for the immediate release of the seven came from every continent, issued by government officials, religious leaders, human rights activists, and ordinary citizens during 10 days in May as part of the "Five Years Too Many" campaign. Local and national media reports also carried news of the campaign around the world.

      "Our hope is that the government of Iran will understand clearly that the seven Baha'i prisoners, who have been unjustly and wrongfully held for five long years simply for their religious beliefs, have not been forgotten," said Diane Ala'i, the Baha'i International Community's representative to the United Nations in Geneva.

      "Our ultimate hope, of course, is that Iran will immediately release the seven – and all other prisoners of conscience in Iran," said Ms. Ala'i.

      Iran of course.

    5. Such is the quality of life for minorities in a racist apartheid state.

      Egypt of course

      From a beacon of Christianity to a place where Christians are barely surviving, this is what Egypt has become:
      Coptic Women Raped In Egypt

      by Ted on May 5, 2013 in General

    6. .

      Gee, you wonder why the Palestinians would want to live in the West Bank when they could be enjoying themselves in an Israeli prison.


    7. Actually it's a right of passage. You are not a true Palestinian man til you served time. Sort of what is happening in America with blacks..

  9. Delegitimization of Israel as a motivation for the apartheid analogy
    Some critics of the apartheid analogy state that it is intended to delegitimize Israel and Zionism, applying a higher standard of behaviour to the Jewish state than to other nations or to the Palestinian Authority in order to justify the boycotting, ostracism, or elimination of the State of Israel.[13][14][15][259][260][261] Critics say that much more obviously "apartheid"-like treatment of Palestinian refugees in the Palestinian Authority territory, Jordan and Lebanon, are ignored and are not the subject of delegitimization campaigns, exemplifying double standards.[262][263][264][265]

    well that fits, deuce thinks that israel should be destroyed and it's people scattered...

  10. Alright, you made your point, Israel is not as bad as Egypt, Iran and your usual slander of the victims of what goes to be a hate crime in the US and Europe.

    1. Israel is not an apartheid state in any way, shape or form.

      Now the Palestinian territories?

      That is a perfect example of an ethnically cleansed, racist land.

  11. I think the United States must be an apartheid state. We have, after all, Reservations for Native Americans.


    1. But we're not really 'an apartheid state' any more than Israel. We used to be in the South but that was long ago.



    Egyptian mob gang-rapes a pair of Coptic Christian women in Cairo


  13. Russian Official Says Venezuela Is the ‘Best Solution’ for Snowden

    Published: July 6, 2013

    MOSCOW — A senior member of the Russian Parliament said Saturday that political asylum in Venezuela would be “the best solution” for Edward J. Snowden, the former intelligence contractor who is on the run from the American authorities.
    Enlarge This Image

    President Evo Morales of Bolivia said that his country would grant Mr. Snowden asylum “if he asked for it.”
    The comments by the Russian lawmaker, Aleksei Pushkov, the chairman of the international affairs committee of the State Duma, the lower house of Parliament, came just a few hours after Venezuela and Nicaragua extended the first firm offers of asylum to Mr. Snowden, who has been holed up at Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow for nearly two weeks, and they seemed to reflect the Kremlin’s increasing desire to be rid of him.

    “Sanctuary for Snowden in Venezuela would be the best solution,” Mr. Pushkov posted on Twitter. “The country has a sharp conflict with the United States. It will not be worse. And he can’t live in Sheremetyevo.”

  14. About those "price tag " attacks

    A handful of what are presumably nationalist Jewish youth continue to commit acts of vandalism against Arab targets, both Muslim and Christian. And a world eager to point out just how deprived are the Jews of Israel continues to jump on those incidents as though they were earth-shattering news.

    These "price tag" attacks - so named because the perpetrators say they are the price Israel must pay for surrendering to Arab demands - have been a god-send for those of Israel's antagonists who try to justify Arab terrorism by claiming the Jewish state behaves no better than its foes. But it is a worthwhile exercise to make a logical comparison between price tag vandalism and, say, the regular stoning of Jewish motorists (we don't even need to touch on the much more severe phenomenons of suicide bombings and rocket attacks).

    In the case of price tag vandalism, small groups of extremist Jews acting alone seek to antagonize and intimidate. To date, these "attacks" have resulted in exactly zero deaths, and an equal number of injuries. In every instance, the vandalism has been universally condemned by the rest of Israel, and on many occasions Israelis have turned out to publicly stand in solidarity with the victims. The Israel Police continue to hunt the vandals and recently made several arrests.

    In the case of stone-throwing, small groups of violent Palestinian Arabs acting alone seek to cause bodily harm to Jewish motorists. To date, a number of people have been killed in these attacks, and a much larger number have been wounded. Palestinian public opinion polls consistently show that the vast majority of Palestinians have no problem with such violence, and in fact see it as an integral part of their "struggle" for statehood. The Palestinian Authority does not arrest or otherwise punish the perpetrators, and no Palestinians show up at the funerals or hospital beds of the victims.

    Beyond the actual vandalism and stone-throwing, the manner in which the respective societies respond to these crimes is very telling, both of the societies themselves and of the level of hypocrisy in the way the media and pro-Palestinian activists portray the situation. Even ignoring the fact that price tag incidents are so very few in number compared to stone-throwing attacks against Jewish motorists, attempting to draw moral equivalence between the two actions exceeds the limits of reason.

    Israel is not perfect. Take it from someone who has lived here for half his life, this nation has flaws aplenty. And no one is more critical of those flaws than Israelis themselves. In fact, Israelis are self-critical to a fault, often adopting the unsubstantiated and false accusations of their antagonists just to make sure they have covered all the bases. It's never wrong for us to want to be better than we are. But for the rest of the world to hold Israel to some mythical standard of ethics that no other nation has managed to attain is wrong. And to exaggerate those flaws Israel does possess by equating them to murder and attempted murder is nothing short of antisemitism akin to the historic anti-Jewish blood libels that haunted this people for centuries in exile.

    1. ZERO deaths, ZERO INJURIES.

    2. .

      I see there is no link to the above post but it not as if we haven't seen it before, trying to justify what can't be justified by calling those who question it anti-Semitic.

      The only way Israel can be criticized for the price-tag attacks is if they try to justify or rationalize them in the manner you are doing. The attacks are carried out by a relatively small band of extremist elements within the settler population in Israel. They are radicals in the same way the skin-heads are radicals here. To try to justify what they do is absurd.

      They attack Palestineans, Israeli Arabs, Christians, and government troops. They attack people and property. They try to intimidate. Their aim is to resist any government attempts to delay or take down settlements. They want Israel to be an orthodox theocracy and they want the segregation of the Jewish population. They are racists and segregationists.

      Abu Ghose is a village that has been around for thousands of years. Its near Jerusalem. Its population is made up Arabs, Christians, and Jews. From everything I've read, they seem to get along just fine. The residents are Israeli citizens. The reason for the vandalism and graffiti wasn't because of any attacks on Israelis it was because Abu Ghose represents the thing the radical settlers (or young copy-cat thugs) despise most, Arabs, Christians, and Jews living together in peace and harmony.

      The prime minister of Israel, the president, various ministers, the head of the police, the head of national security, judges, numerous rabbis, various newspapers, and an overwhelming percentage of the people of Israel have all condemned these attacks. American Jewish groups including the ADL and the AJC have condemned the attacks.

      I checked the AIPAC website but evidently they were too busy lobbying to notice.

      The only ones I have seen trying to excuse the price-tag attacks are you and the guy who wrote the article above.


    3. .

      Price tag policy (Hebrew: מדיניות תג מחיר) is a policy used by Israeli right-wing extremists and radical settlers, which seek what they see as "revenge" against random Palestinians and against the Israeli security forces, mostly through acts of property damage, arson and graffiti.[1][2][3] . According to the New York Times, price tag activists attempt to exact a price from local Palestinians or from the Israeli security forces for any action taken against their settlement enterprise.[4][5][6]

      The price-tag campaign includes attacks on Palestinian villages and property by Israeli settlers as retaliation for attacks on Israeli targets and for government demolition of structures at West Bank settlements and the removal of outposts which are variously described as being either unauthorised or illegal,[7][8][8][9][10][11], and in recent years (2012-2013), dozens of such attacks have targeted Christian sites and the Christian community in Jerusalem..[12] They generally follow actions by Israeli authorities that are perceived as harming the settlement enterprise, or follow Palestinian violence against settlers. B'Tselem has documented many acts of this kind, which have included blocking roads, throwing stones at cars and houses, making incursions into Palestinian villages and land, torching fields, uprooting trees, and other damage to property.[13] or curbs on Israeli construction in the West Bank,[14][15] where 80% of the attacks take place, while some 10-15% take place in the area of Jerusalem.[16]

      Shin Bet estimates of the extent of the perpetrator group vary: one figure calculates that from several hundred to about 3,000 people implement the price tag policy,[17] while a recent analysis sets the figure at a few dozen individuals, organized in small close-knit and well-organised cells[18] and backed by a few hundred right-wing activists.[19]

      The "Price tag" incidents include demonstrations, blocking of roads, vandalism of Palestinian property, violent attacks carried out against random Palestinian civilians, burning of mosques and fields, stone throwing, uprooting trees, making incursions into Palestinian villages and land,[20] damaging the property, or injuring members of the Israeli police and the Israeli Defense Forces, and defacing the homes of left-wing activists.[21]

      The roots of the Price tag policy were traced to the August 2005 dismantling of settlements in the Gaza Strip as part of Israel's unilateral disengagement plan. Ever since then, extreme right wing settlers have sought to establish a "balance of terror", in which every state action aimed at them generates an immediate violent reaction.[22]


  15. Arab Christians: Israel only state worth fighting for

    Arab Christian residents of Nazareth who proudly serve in the Israeli army and encourage their children to do the same are coming under increasing attack, and Israel is starting to take notice and come to their aid.

    For a number of years now, a group of Nazareth Christians who are officers in the Israeli army have been actively recruiting young local Arabs to follow in their footsteps and serve the Jewish state.

    Though not an officer himself, one of the main figures in this movement is Greek Orthodox cleric Father Gabriel Nadaf. Late last month, the Greek Orthodox patriarch in Jerusalem, acting on demands from Muslim Arab members of Israel's Knesset, threated to fire Nadaf.

    Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and Interior Minister Gideon Saar immediately called the priest to convey their support and offer their assistance.

  16. Now from some honest Jews and humanitarians:
    A day in Jinba, the tiny Palestinian village about to become a huge IDF training zone
    Everything seems to be forbidden here; only the water tower of Avigail, the vineyards of Sussia, the cowsheds of the Maon Farm and the home of Mitzpe Yair are apparently permitted.
    By Gideon Levy | Jul.05, 2013 | 11:07 AM | 4

    Everything is heartbreaking in Jinba: the ancient stone fences, the donkeys braying in the desert heat, the dark caves where villagers live. Photo by Alex Levac

    Gideon Levy

    West Bank
    Israel Palestine

    Two upside-down concrete blocks on the side of the rocky road that descends to the beautiful wadi constitute the landmark. This is where the Israel Defense Forces’ Firing Zone 918 begins, but all it says on the blocks at this particular place is: “Sick of the occupation.” At the end of the slope, in the heart of the valley, lies the tiny and beautiful village of Jinba. It looks like something out of the Bible: a collection of several tents, huts, sheep pens and caves that are cut off from the electrical grid and water system, cut off from the 21st century, cut off from any semblance of justice or equality. It is a place whose residents have been suffering for decades under the yoke of the occupation. All around is a green sea of “legal” and “illegal” settlements.

    The High Court of Justice of the occupying state will decide on July 15 whether these people who are stubbornly attached to the land − the approximately 250 inhabitants of Jinba − will be allowed to remain in their village, or will once again be uprooted ‏(and later, will likely return‏) as happened during the big expulsion in 1999. The reason for that would ostensibly be to turn this arid piece of land into yet another training area of the army of the occupation, in effect to cleanse this plot of all its Palestinian inhabitants.

    Everything is heartbreaking here: the ancient stone fences, the donkeys braying in the desert heat, the sheep and goats huddling in the pen to find a spot of shade, the tiny school built with donations from an Islamic organization in the United States, the dark caves where villagers live, and the white tent of the clinic set up about two weeks ago, thanks to contributions from an Italian charity and the Italian Foreign Ministry.

    The tent is especially heartbreaking: It contains only a few dusty chairs, an equally dusty hospital bed and a special table for infants. Every once in a while, a doctor comes from the town of Yatta. The Civil Administration personnel who maintain law and order in the area already arrived here this week in order to document the place, to ask questions, to scare and threaten, probably on the way to issuing a demolition order for this forbidden tent. Needless to say, no house, road, vineyard or field belonging to any settlers is included in Firing Zone 918, in the land of the caves in the South Hebron Hills.

    This week we went down to Jinba on the winding and bumpy road in a jeep belonging to Ezra Nawi, an activist in Ta’ayush, an Israeli-Palestinian political nonprofit organization. Without him, and without the other devoted and determined Ta’ayush activists − along with long-time volunteer attorney Shlomo Lecker, members of the Rabbis for Human Rights and Breaking the Silence organizations who work in the vicinity day and night − the ethnic cleansing would long since have been completed here. The members of these groups are the “good Israelis” of the south Hebron hills.


  17. {…}

    Nawi, sporting a purple Bedouin head scarf from Sinai, was afraid his jeep would be confiscated because he was driving into a prohibited zone. His colleague Guy Butavia made sure we fastened our seat belts in the back too, so there wouldn’t be another excuse for harassment by the IDF force that was liable to show up.

    A tractor made its way with difficulty up the path opposite us, belonging to shepherd Khalil Younes, four of whose children were seriously wounded a few years ago when unexploded ordnance suddenly blew up; one died of his wounds. Younes was transporting goats to Yatta.

    We stopped at an observation point next to Bir al-Eid, from which we saw the tent of Haj Ismail, the elderly shepherd who was beaten by settlers a few months ago, and whose home we visited at the time. And we saw the tiny rubber pipe that transports a small quantity of water to Jinba from cisterns on the top of the nearby hill; it has been slashed by the settlers a number of times. And we could also see the wells that were sealed off by the Civil Administration and destroyed and demolished houses. There, not far away, the administration confiscated two special bathrooms for the disabled a few weeks ago.

    Everything seems to be forbidden here. Only the water tower of Avigail, the vineyards of Sussia, the cowshed of the Maon farm, the huts of Lucifer Farm and the homes of Mitzpeh Yair are apparently permitted.

    From the mountain Jinba looked to us like a handful of tiny dots on the wild, uninhabited, primeval landscape. It’s hard to understand how a state can be waging such a prolonged war against it: The road leading in is not a road, and the village is not really a village, in the usual modern sense. Some residents live in Yatta too, during the dry season when the sheep and goats cannot graze in Jinba.

    “Jinba Welcomes Visitors,” says the modest sign at the entrance. Last week a group of Israeli writers visited here at the initiative of Breaking the Silence. Among them were Zeruya Shalev, Eyal Megged, Alona Kimhi and Sayed Kashua.

    “Life here is not natural,” one resident told us. “Everything is decided by the occupation.”

    The new village school, built in 2011, may be the tiniest I’ve ever seen: four small classrooms, four to five tables in each, 35 pupils. In the classroom for first- and second-grade pupils there’s a blackboard and chalk. The days of the week were written on the board − a souvenir of the last lesson before summer vacation. There was no water in the drinking fountain, and of course they’ve never heard of an air conditioner or a fan here; two swings and a slide, without a drop of shade, constitute the playground. In spite of that, everything seemed to reflect touching devotion and care.


  18. {…}
    About a year ago the IDF confiscated the car of teachers at the school who come from Yatta. Last winter the IDF detained three jeeps and three all-terrain vehicles in which residents of the village, including little children, were traveling home. At 5 P.M., they were stopped; at 3 A.M., they were released. All that time they had to stand in the wintry cold, children and parents.

    One Jinba resident, Hamzi Rabai, was among those detained. He said he won’t forget that night, at the end of which four of the vehicles were confiscated − as it said on the army order: “By dint of the authority invested in me according to paragraph 80, with respect to security directives, I seized the goods described herein. The reason: driving in Firing Zone 918 between Mitzpeh Yair and Jinba.” A phone number for “clarifications” was given and the order also bore the unreadable scribbled signature of the officer in charge.

    The impoverished people were forced to pay a total of NIS 20,000 to get their vehicles back two months later, after a legal battle in which they were assisted by a lawyer, who of course also cost them money. The teachers’ car has yet to be returned, along with two additional vehicles that were confiscated at another time − belonging to the district veterinarian and the local veterinary service, whose staff came to treat the sheep and goats.

    Meanwhile, on Wednesday night, an IDF unit arrived in Jinba and confiscated Rabai’s vehicle.

    Nobody dreams of confiscating anything from the settlers for entering the firing zone. In a video camera given to him by B’Tselem: the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, one resident shows us pictures of a group of settlers who came to Bir al-Eid about two weeks ago. They arrived in the middle of distribution of sacks of flour donated by the U.S. Agency for International Development ‏(USAID‏), and the settlers made sure to disperse the people who had come for food.

    That’s how it is here, in the land of fire, which only the High Court may be able to save.

  19. Respond after this comment. If you break up the three parts with your usual spam, it will be deleted.

  20. Now tell us which civilized country that you are aware of that would tolerate this?

  21. It is clear preferable to Zimbabwe, i think.

    Article: Haaretz 5 July 2013. written by Jews, for Jews, about Jews.