The paradox of power

Power paradox

On December 19, two significant and related events took place in Israel. The Shabak finally detained terrorists who had attacked students of a local yeshiva near the settlement of Homesh three days earlier. As a result of the terrorist attack, 25-year-old Yehuda Dimentman was killed and his comrades were injured.

On the same day, the security forces destroyed the buildings erected in Homesh in memory of Yehuda. At the same time, there were clashes between the police and settlers, one soldier was slightly injured.

All this is painfully reminiscent of 2005, when four villages were evacuated in Samaria as part of the so-called disengagement. Among them was Homesh, whose residents tried to resist the eviction. Their posters read: “ Sharon, you are a traitor! ''

The settlers really didn't expect Ariel Sharon to give the order to raze their homes to the ground. Of all the prime ministers, he seemed the most convinced of the right, the most indomitable hawk, the most loyal friend of the settlement movement. For his straightforwardness and pressure, he was nicknamed the Bulldozer. And with the same tenacity with which the bulldozer Sharon led tanks to Beirut, he carried out the liquidation of Gush Katif in Gaza and a number of settlements in Judea and Samaria, creating his own party for this purpose.

After a year and a half, the settlers built a yeshiva in Homesh and began to guard it. Despite this, in 2013 the territory was opened to the entry of Palestinians. This happened already under Netanyahu, who also always declared himself a supporter of the right ideology.

It is no longer surprising that a similar metamorphosis occurs with Naftali Bennett. Yamina, New Right, Union of Right Forces – the names of the parties and the lists that he presented at different times emphasize an unequivocal political position, but this does not prevent him from ordering the destruction of Homesh today and expelling the settlers from there. The reason is not that he has to take into account the views of the left and Arab parties in his coalition – the prime minister did not even try to change the fate of Homesh. Paradoxical as it sounds, in our reality one cannot expect firm political convictions from the head of government, therefore Bennett's betrayal, like Sharon's betrayal, was inevitable for the settlers. Or maybe we ourselves choose such leaders who change their views depending on the height at which they sit.

It could be argued that Homesh was destroyed long before Bennett's rule, and he only follows the established order, forbidding illegal construction. However, in recent years, the idea to restore the village has been increasingly heard. Today the family of the murdered Yehuda Dimentman is asking for it. The revival of Homesh and the formalization of the yeshiva would be a worthy response to the terrorists. In 2017, a draft was submitted to the Interministerial Commission on Legislation to allow Israelis to return to the settlements of northern Samaria. He was supported by the former commander of the IDF central district, Yair Naveh, who confirmed that the withdrawal from the area did not bring anything to Israel. However, neither Bibi nor Bennett responded to this proposal. The current prime minister sees it as his duty to detain the terrorists. But what's the point in catching the killers and at the same time creating conditions for them to commit terrorist attacks?

While the army is driving a handful of Jews from the land where their parents lived and their friend died, the Arabs are actively developing Judea and Samaria, and the PA authorities are issuing construction permits in zone C, ignoring the division established by the Oslo agreements. Every year Palestinian houses are more and more densely surrounded by Jewish settlements and the roads leading to them. Experts warn that the Jewish population may soon find itself in isolated enclaves. When Bennett was Secretary of Defense, the question arose that such construction should be suppressed as a direct threat to security, but Bennett & ndash; the prime minister does not even remember this. But he constantly repeats that every terrorist must know: he cannot hide from retaliation.

It is not difficult to make such statements, because soldiers will risk their lives when capturing terrorists, and they will be responsible for these operations. their commanders. The head of government could have shown personal courage if he spoke out in favor of rebuilding settlements and ordered the destruction of illegal Palestinian homes. But he doesn't.

However, the settlers hardly counted on his help. They have already seen, like all of us: power changes not only a person's character, but also his principles. Or prevents him from following his principles, which is the same thing. Perhaps Bennett will become a friend of the settlers again when he relinquishes his post to Lapid. If he finds himself in opposition and nothing depends on him, then, probably, he will even be able to advocate a return to Homesh. In the meantime, security forces are simultaneously catching militants and fighting the “ youth of the hills '', as if they both – and ndash; the same criminals.

Author //: Ira Kogan

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