A series of news items in recent days make it clear that there is a definite upswing in anti-Israel violence from Palestinians in Judea and Samaria.
A security official told Tazpit News Agency that during the past year, particularly during and after Israel’s recent Operation Pillar of Defense, there has been a sharp escalation in terrorist activity in Judea and Samaria.
The GSS (General Security Service) reports a recent increase in violence in the Jerusalem area, as well as in Judea and Samaria, compared to a comparatively quiet October, in which there were 39 attacks.
During November, the GSS reports that there were 122 terror attacks in Judea and Samaria, with 98 of those attacks occurring during Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense aimed at halting rocket fire emanating from Gaza. In Jerusalem, 44 attacks were recorded, with 27 occurring during Operation Pillar of Defense. A majority of the attacks, 156 of the 166, involved Palestinians throwing Molotov cocktails.
A year end report from the Shin-Bet confirms these findings. Each of the links within the excerpt below leads to an item about a particular case of Palestinian rioting or violence:
A Shin Bet report released Monday reveals that the last two months of 2012 have seen a significant rise in terrorist attacks in the West Bank and Jerusalem. In December, 111 attacks were reported, while 166 were reported in November, during which Operation Pillar of Defense took place.
By comparison, 70 attacks occurred in October, 67 in September and only 28 in August. The incidents in December included 98 Molotov cocktail attacks (29 of which in Jerusalem), six bombings, three grenade attacks, two light arms shootings and a stabbing.
The December monthly report mentioned that three security service men were wounded in the attacks; two were run over in the Shomron and one in Jerusalem.
The Shin Bet’s information does not mention the dozens of rioting incidents that took place around the West Bank last month. In these events 20 Israelis were lightly wounded.
Last month, due to urgent intelligence, security forces made several arrests in broad daylight inside Palestinian communities, including Jenin and nearby Tamoun. These arrests were followed by violent clashes with the Israeli forces, which responded with crowd control measures to contain the riot.
The military makes the distinction between the Palestinian population and terrorists, and despite the unrest, no unilateral actions such as the installation of road blocks, common during the second intifada, were taken. Nevertheless, sources in the Judea and Samaria Division said that the Palestinian Authority has been turning a blind eye to Hamas’ unusual regrouping efforts in West Bank cities.
Earlier this week a terrorist fired at a Kibbutz security guard in Gush Etzion:
IDF forces arrested a Palestinian who fired at a security post in Kibbutz Migdal Oz in Gush Etzion. Residents who heard the gunfire called for security forces who canvassed the area and apprehended the terrorist who was found in possession of an improvised weapon. There were no injuries.
The incident follows another event in the West Bank which took place on Saturday when a Palestinian was shot and killed by the IDF in south Mount Hebron.
In some welcome news, the IDF arrested 2 terror cells linked to a series of violent disturbances in Judea and Samaria.
The first series of arrests targeted suspects from the village of Husan and the Bethlehem area, who are suspected of hurling rocks at an Israeli vehicle on Route 375, which resulted in an Israeli woman, Ziyona Kala, being seriously injured.
Kala, wife of the famous singer Itzik Kala, was in intensive care for weeks after the attack, before regaining consciousness last month.
Her husband told Channel 2 in December that when he first saw her in the hospital, “I didn’t believe she would live. Without a doubt, there was a moment I fell apart. I don’t remember when I cried like that,” he said. Since then, Ziyona Kala has made good progress in her recovery.
“During questioning by the Shin Bet, the suspects – some of them minors – confessed to the act, and to throwing rocks at other vehicles that travelled along the road at the time,” the Shin Bet said.
The intelligence agency named Abd Aluhab Hamamra, 22, as the man who threw the rock that caused the injury. He will be charged in the coming days at the Military Court of Judea. Four additional suspects – three of them minors – will be charged for taking part in the attack.
In another investigation, a group of Palestinians from Kafr Bita, near Nablus, are under arrest for throwing rocks from a moving vehicle, and for attempting to carry out shooting attacks using a homemade firearm in the northern West Bank.
Recently in Jerusalem, a gang of Arab youths set upon some haredim in attack reminiscent of Europe in the 1930s. Here is the shocking video. The worst part in my opinion is the way the Arabs laugh during the attack:
In another rock-throwing attack on a car just yesterday, an Israeli child was hurt, but you’ll never hear about this in the international media. Israel Matzav reports:
There’s been a massive amount of rock throwing by ‘Palestinians’ near the Judean town of Tekoa today. The ‘international community’ treats rock throwing by ‘Palestinians’ as a minor nuisance – non violent of course – so I’d like to show you what it really looks like.
All three pictures came through the Twitter page of IDF Captain Barak Raz.
Follow the link to see the rest of the pictures. As Carl in Jerusalem says, rocks can kill.
We move now to a different kind of Israel-hatred, some of which is purely political, and some of which morphs into old-fashioned antisemitism.
In an earlier post I mentioned Egyptian President Morsi’s antisemitic comments from a couple of years ago. Until today there has been a resounding silence from the world media and diplomatic corps. Finally the New York Times woke up and correctly remarked that Morsi’s slurs arouse concern.
Presidential spokesman Yasser Ali said Wednesday that Morsi told a US Senate delegation that a distinction must be made between criticism of what he called the “racist” policies of the Israelis against the Palestinians and insults against the Jewish faith.
I’m not sure how openly calling Jews “apes and pigs”can called “criticism of Israeli racist policies” and not and insult against the Jewish faith, but whatever. It’s a start that he’s embarrassed enough to try and make excuses.
Another diplomatic onslaught emanates from our old friend Turkey, which has blocked Israel’s admission into the Renewable Energy Organization:
Turkey blocked Israel and Cyprus from affiliating themselves with the International Agency for Renewable Energies (IRENA) during a voting session on new members in Abu Dhabi Tuesday.
Israel has become a world leader in renewable energy innovation. It has set a goal to have 10 percent of its electricity generated by alternative means by 2020, an effort which was given support by the government to the tune of $600 million in November 2010. Much of the money will be invested in green construction and development of new technologies.
Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face. Then again, that has always been the way of the Arabs: anything to harm Israel and the Jews, whether they themselves are harmed in the process or not.
Meanwhile the Palestinians are taking their case to ever wider international forums. This week the “Palestinian Ambassador” (in actuality the representative of the Palestinian Authority) in London, speaking to a pro-Palestinian group in Parliament, said that there is no two-state solution. He also made the most remarkable comment that “the Jews are the children of G-d”. Can’t argue with that! Though he obviously did not mean it in a complimentary fashion, as Richard Millet reports:
Last night Manuel Hassassian, the Palestinian “Ambassador” to the UK, said he believes that the Jews are the children of God because nobody is stopping them from building their “messianic dream of Eretz Israel”. He called for a “one state solution” and looked forward to the world’s Muslim population reaching two billion.
“We, the Palestinians, the most highly educated and intellectual in the Middle East, are still struggling for the basic right of self-determination. What an irony. How long are we going to suffer and be patient with Israel? You know I’m reaching the conclusion that the Jews are the children of God, the only children of God and the Promised Land is being paid by God! I have started to believe this because nobody is stopping Israel building its messianic dream of Eretz Israel to the point I believe that maybe God is on their side. Maybe God is partial on this issue.”
Then removing his “PLO and Palestinian Authority hat” he continued:
“There is no two state solution. Democracies don’t fight each other. If Israel is a democracy I would claim that the Palestinians are also a democracy. If democracies cannot fight each other then why not have one state?; one man, one vote.”
The British parliamentarians who spoke at this disgraceful meeting were even worse in their lies and smears about Israel. Read the whole post.
Another not-feel-good article in the Jerusalem Post informs us that Vienna, the Austrian capital, is filled with Iranian agents who are working to secure nuclear technology and to eliminate dissent with the Iranian ex-pat community.
Against this inglorious background of terrorism and diplomatic lawfare, it is infuriating to read British PM David Cameron’s arrogant response to former Mayor of New York Ed Koch’s letter to him in which he challenged Cameron’s views on Israeli settlements. David Cameron asserted that Israel is building a fortress but that will not keep it secure:
We firmly believe that the people of Israel have a right to live peacefully and free from terror. But we also believe that the only sustainable way to achieve this is through a negotiated two-state solution. As friends of Israel, it is important we do whatever we can to reach that ultimate objective: two states, living side by side, in peace. We ask Israel to stop building settlements because they are illegal under international law, an obstacle to peace and make a two-state solution, with Jerusalem as a shared capital, harder to achieve. They are, ultimately, not in Israel’s long-term interests. Simply building a fortress without a negotiated agreement with the Palestinians cannot deliver lasting security for Israel.
There are so many things wrong with just this one paragraph that I hardly have room to mention them. I will suffice with two points:
Firstly, the settlements are not illegal under international law. This point has been belaboured over and over, and yet it is like shouting into the wind. How can we ever get our message across? The perverse idea that they are illegal has been repeated like a mantra so many times that, like the Nazis’ chief propagandist Goebels said, people have come to believe it and it has become the received wisdom.
The second error is in believing that “Fortress Israel” will not bring security. I find that highly amusing given the ridiculous lengths to which British security forces go in order to keep the peace, and they are not faced with anywhere near the daily onslaught that Israel faces.
The man’s smug self-satisfaction and arrogance demands a swift response. I think the Open Letter to William Hague could be reworded and sent back to Cameron. What say you?