Report: Israeli settler terrorism inherent in occupation state

Israel considers settlement as the core of its extended Zionist project, so, since the beginning of its establishment and occupation of the Palestinian territories, it used many colonial methods and tools to support and establish its Zionist project, and to block the possibility of establishing a Palestinian state as well, according to the National Bureau for Boycott Affairs and Land Defense of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

It said in a report that the Zionist movement and its institutions that were operating in British Mandate Palestine are considered to be the root of terror in the region.

“The construction of military and paramilitary organizations, including terrorist Jewish organizations, was in full swing before the eyesight of the British Mandate government, and when the appropriate moment came, with the withdrawal of British forces from Palestine, the country was a scene for brutal attacks committed by trained and armed Jewish forces ready to implement what was later known as the ‘Dalet’ plan for a total ethnic cleansing, a plan that was approved by the leadership of the Zionist movement and the Jewish Agency in March 1948, before assigning its implementation, in detailed directives, to those forces.”

According to the report, the Dalet plan “was based on ethnic cleansing as a central goal of its objectives, in strict detailed directives, calling for merciless killing, spreading terror, besieging Palestinian cities and villages, burning homes and properties, and planting mines among the rubble to prevent the people from returning to their homes. As a result of that criminal plan, according to a number of new historians in Israel, who reported that these terrorist organizations committed 28 massacres, the most horrific of which was in Deir Yassin, and carried out demolitions of more than 530 towns and villages, displaced about 800,000 Palestinians and turned them into refugees.”

The most prominent leaders of those terrorist organizations, said the report, were Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir, both of whom later became heads of Israeli governments. “Menachem Begin said that without Deir Yassin, it would not have been possible for Israel to exist. As for Yitzhak Shamir, he described the massacre as a humanitarian duty, while their successor in terrorism Benjamin Netanyahu followed the same approach. In an official celebration of the anniversary of the occupation of Jerusalem, Netanyahu praised the courage of those he described as the heroes of the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem in 1946, and laid a wreath on a memorial to the Irgun terrorist gangs.”

The PLO report reviews the most prominent and dangerous modern Zionist organizations and associations operating in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, which are considered one of the arms of the Israeli occupation to control, expand settlements, displace and terrorize the Palestinian population through organized terrorist attacks in a repetitive manner, similar to what was carried out by the Irgun, Haganah, Stern, and Palmach against the Palestinian population since the beginning of the establishment of its colonial project in Palestine, especially its terrorist attacks and brutal massacres against the Palestinian population.

According to the report, the modern Zionist organizations and associations operating in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, are the Hilltop Youths, the Price Tag, the Lahava Settlement Organization, the Nahala Organization, the Insurgency organization, Netzah Yehuda Battalion, and Lafamilia racist organization.

Following is a brief look at each of these organizations:

The Hilltop Youths:

The beginnings of the formation of the terrorist “hilltop youths” or “hilltop boys” organization emerged following the famous appeal made by the Minister of Energy in Benjamin Netanyahu’s first government, Ariel Sharon, in opposing peace settlement path, which he believed that the occupation prime minister at the time, Benjamin Netanyahu, intended to follow. Sharon appealed to settler boys and youths to occupy the highest mountains and hills in the West Bank, telling them: “What we lay our hands on today will remain ours, and what we do not lay our hands on will go to the Palestinians.”

Sharon provided a generous financial support and political cover for these gangs, until they grew, expanded, and spread in the form of small groups living in single-building settlement outposts in the West Bank open areas. The members of these groups carry extremist biblical ideas, especially against Arabs and Palestinians in particular, as they lead organized terrorist and criminal attacks from time to time against the Palestinian population in villages adjacent to settlements and outposts. They wreak havoc, destruction, killing and burning of everything that falls into their hands of Palestinian property and lives, with the protection and support of the Israeli occupation soldiers. The terrorist “Hill Youths” is led by extremist Zionist figures, the most prominent of whom are Abri Ran, Meir Bartler, Eti Zar. Most of the members of these groups work in sheep herding or agriculture, and the bulk of them hail from the settlements, while another section of them hails from the large Israeli cities. Neither political parties nor anything unites them, but strong animosity to the Palestinians and some extreme right-wing ideas.

The Price Tag (Tag Mahir):

The activity and operations of this terrorist organization “Price Tag or price-collection”, as abbreviated in Hebrew Tag Mahir, began in mid-2008, specifically when a group of extremist settler activists called for an expanded meeting of settlers in the Yitzhar settlement, south of Nablus, to express their rejection of the occupation government’s policy regarding settlement construction in the West Bank, and in order to agree on future action strategy for the settlers. Indeed, hundreds of settlers gathered from various settlements in the West Bank, led by settler leaders, and it was agreed to carry out terrorist attacks and operations against Palestinian citizens in the West Bank and within the Green Line and sign under the name of “Price Tag” in the scene of their terrorist attacks. The number of extremist settlers under the banner of “Price Tag or Price Collection ” exceeds more than three thousand settlers, in various settlements and outposts in the West Bank. Others are from Israeli cities, while the majority of them hail from extremist religious ideological settlements, and from biblical Jewish schools.

The price tag organization includes a wide range of religious and extremist Zionist movements and groups active in Israeli settlements and cities, most notably: National religious Rabbis, ultra-Orthodox religious rabbis, graduates and students of yeshivas religious schools in Israeli settlements and in Israel, activists and supporters of the banned terrorist Kach movement, activists of the extremist Zionist parties and the hilltop youths. The common denominator between the various components and elements of the Price Tag organization is their embrace of the racist Zionist ideology based on intense hatred of Arabs and Palestinians, calling for killing and expelling them, promoting settlement in the various occupied Palestinian territories, and Judaizing Jerusalem.

The Lahava Settlement Organization:

This is an extremist Zionist organization, founded in late 1999 by its current president, the extremist settler Ben Zion Gopstein, who is known to be one of the students and followers of the Zionist Rabbi Kahane, the founder of the Kach terrorist organization. The name of the “Lahava” organization means “flame” in Hebrew, and it is an abbreviation for its definition of “the organization to prevent the melting of the Jews in the Holy Land.” It is considered one of the most prominent Zionist organizations that adopt extreme right-wing ideology socially and politically and follows strict biblical agendas, in addition to its clear racism against Palestinians and Arabs.

Lahava also annually celebrates the perpetrator of the Ibrahimi Mosque massacre in Hebron, the extremist terrorist settler and military doctor Baruch Goldstein, and considers him a “national hero.” Since its establishment, the Lahava has launched continuous racist campaigns to achieve its goals, which focus on the explicit call for the expulsion of all Arabs from the land of historical Palestine. The organization adopts racism and hate speech as a guiding slogan and action against Arabs and Palestinians and carries out physical attacks and bloody incitement against them, especially in occupied Jerusalem. It is considered the main inciter of the settlers and the extreme right movements to conducting mass storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque and perform Talmudic rituals in the mosque courtyards. It also publicly calls for the demolition of Al-Aqsa Mosque.

The Nahala Organization:

The Zionist Nahala movement was founded in 2005 by extremist settler Moshe Levinger, the godfather of settlement in Hebron, and one of the most prominent founders of the Gush Emunim organization, along with the settler Daniela Weiss who is now leading the movement. The Nahala movement is considered an extension and continuation of the ideas and objectives of the Gush Emunim expansionist settlement organization, in addition to the movement’s support for settler gangs in the West Bank, especially the Hill Youths.

The Nahala organization has contributed to the establishment of more than 60 settlements and settlement outposts so far, and is active in the media in promoting settlement projects in the West Bank, and seeks to strengthen relations with political leaders in Israel and in Jewish communities and organizations around the world. The organization enjoys support from the Religious Zionism party, which is led by one of the most prominent and notorious extremist Israeli politicians with fascist predispositions who called for burning the town of Hawara, south of the city of Nablus, in a position that angered wide international circles. It aims with its settlement activities for the settlement of two million Zionists in the West Bank.

The Insurgency organization:

The Insurgency organization is one of the most terrorist and extremist Zionist organizations. It emerged from the extremist Zionist Hills Youths organization, in a more organized and strict way. It is led by the extremist Meir Ettinger, the grandson of the extremist Rabbi Meir Kahane. It includes young men aged 16 to 25 years old, who are carefully selected by the leadership of the organization and hold their meetings in complete secrecy. The organization operates in the West Bank, and most of its members are concentrated in sporadic settlement outposts scattered on Palestinian hills and mountains. Among the most prominent crimes of this organization: The burning alive of three members of the Dawabsha family, including an infant, in the village of Duma, south of Nablus, setting fire to the Church of Bread and Fish on the shores of Lake Tiberias, and torching Palestinian vehicles and property in the towns of Hawara and Burin, south of Nablus.

Netzah Yehuda Battalion:

The Nitzah Yehuda battalion is a military battalion affiliated with the Gvir Brigade in the Israeli army. It was established in 1999, with extremists and religious radicals serving in this militia-like battalion, whose armed members are supervised by rabbis before the eyes of the Israeli occupation army. The bulk of the soldiers in this battalion come from settler families and live in random settlement outposts in the West Bank and receive regular lectures, lessons and religious sermons by the rabbis and settler leaders who visit them at the battalion headquarters. The Netzah Yehuda battalion/militia operates in the northern West Bank and includes about a thousand soldiers. Its soldiers carry out brutal attacks against the Palestinians, the latest of which was when the soldiers of this battalion committed field execution of the Palestinian elderly, who also holds American citizenship, the 80-year-old Omar Asaad in the village of Jaljelia near Ramallah.

Lafamilia organization:

This is a right-wing, racist, extremist Zionist organization, and it is considered one of the most active and dangerous racist Jewish organizations seeking to fuel the conflict with the Palestinians on both sides of the Green Line and in Jerusalem. This organization is considered a fertile ground for incubating and creating an environment of terrorism and racism against Palestinians and Arabs. Lafamilia was founded in 2005 by Jewish activists and members as a fan association for the Bitar Jerusalem football team. Despite the fact that the organization promotes itself as a fan association for the Israeli team, its members are known for their blatant racism against everything that is not Jewish, and their racist rhetoric, public barbaric behavior, and terrorist and sabotage operations targeting everything that is Arab, in their activities in and outside stadiums.

According to the report by the National Bureau for Boycott Affairs and Land Defense of the Palestine Liberation Organization, these terrorist organizations have political, spiritual and field references. The political references are led by Bezalel Smotrich, Minister of Finance and Settlement at the Ministry of Defense, Itamar Ben Gvir, Minister of National Security in the Israeli government and his advisor Bentzi Goffstein, leader of the extremist Lahava movement, accused of incitement to racism and terrorism, and Hanamal Dorfman, the head of Ben Gvir’s bureau and Orit Strok, Minister for Religious Zionism’s National Missions, and other members of the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, and government members.

They also have spiritual references, including quite a few rabbinical leaders, most notably Rabbi Haim Druckmann, one of the most prominent religious and spiritual references for the Jewish Home party, and Rabbi Dov Lior, and other rabbis, such as Eliezer Rabinovich and Shlomo Aviner, who permit the settlers of Yitzhar and others, even in violating the sanctity of the Sabbath, to go to road crossings to block roads, terrorize and attack Palestinian citizens and their vehicles and endanger their lives, as happened with Aisha al-Rabi, who was killed at the hands of these terrorists at the Zaatara junction on October 12, 2018.

Israel, with its executive (government), legislative (Knesset), and judicial (the Supreme Court) branches, refrains from classifying the Jewish organizations mentioned in this report as terrorist organizations, but rather classifies them as unlicensed associations, despite the fact that the Chief of Staff of the occupation army, Herzi Halevi, and the head of the Public Security Service (Shin Bet) Ronen Bar and the Israeli Police Commissioner, Kobi Shabtai, recently described, in a joint statement, the attacks of these organizations against innocent Palestinians as national terrorism. Only once, the government of Israel banned the activities of both the Kach and Kahana Hai groups, following the crime committed at the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron on February 25, 1994, by the extremist Jewish military doctor Baruch Goldstein, before these groups returned to operate under a new cover.

How can these terrorist organizations and their leaders be prosecuted and punished? Wondered the National Bureau for Boycott Affairs and Land Defense. It gave the following points in answer to its rhetorical question:

● The basic and fundamental task that must be focused on at this level is to break the silence, the silence of the international community, the silence of governments and that of the media, and stop the policy of double standards. Not in comparison, which is totally unfair, but many countries classify a number of Palestinian factions as terrorist, yet, all countries in the Western world, which claim to defend democracy and human rights and combat terrorism, are silent on Jewish terrorist organizations, which take settlements and outposts as safe havens under the protection of the occupation army. Breaking the silence here is the beginning.

● Taking advantage of modern social media (YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok, etc.) to expose settler crimes and terrorist attacks in multiple languages, to clarify the picture before international public opinion about the fascist settler organizations, and to build an international popular environment and incubator that rejects and denounces settler crimes. This can help support the official steps to be taken against these organizations and their leaders.

● Addressing human rights organizations, solidarity movements, boycott committees, and civil institutions in foreign countries, especially Western countries, and providing them continuously with all data and statistics related to settler attacks, and urging them to start taking practical steps to prosecute and hold settler organizations and their leaders accountable before local courts in those countries.

● Communicate with human rights organizations around the world, especially in Western countries, that practice double standards, and provide them with data periodically and whenever needed, and encourage them to play their role in exposing the crimes of these terrorist organizations and exert pressure on decision-makers to take this into account and prevent terrorist settler leaders and activists from entering these countries.

● Formation of a broad international coalition, especially in Western countries, whose central nucleus will be human rights and civil society organizations in both Palestine and the occupying state, against the occupation and settlements, to put pressure on the occupation government and its judicial apparatus (the Supreme Court) to classify these terrorist settler organizations as terrorist organizations and not as non-licensed associations or federations as the occupying state does.

● Approaching the United Nations Human Rights Council and providing sufficient information about these terrorist organizations operating in the settlements to demand developing a black list that includes their political, spiritual and field leaders, as a basis for prosecuting them, holding them accountable and bringing them to international justice, including the International Criminal Court.

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