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Thu May 24, 2012, 03:47 AM

"Citizen journalism" focuses on Israeli occupation


"Amateur video of Israeli soldiers appearing to watch idly as settlers opened fire on Palestinians throwing stones has emphasized the growing power of "citizen journalism" in the occupied West Bank.

Shaky footage, captured on Saturday from two angles by residents of Aseera al-Qibliya village, shows bearded residents from the nearby settlement of Yitzhar aiming a hand gun and assault rifle at the crowd, followed by sounds of gunfire.

A bloodied youth shot in the face was shown being carried away on the shoulders of fellow villagers. The video was soon posted on the Internet.

Teacher Ibrahim Makhlouf, who filmed the incident, lives by the brush scorched in the clashes on the village's edge, beneath the gaze of the prefabricated suburbs of Yitzhar, which lie outside the official settlement boundary.

"We want the whole world to see what Israel and the settlers do to us. They steal our land and they attack us, and the world said we were the terrorists and criminals," he said."


Video of Settler Shooting Raises Questions Over Israeli Army Response


"Legal officials from the Israeli Defense Forces are investigating more than a dozen episodes in which its soldiers are accused of failing to intervene as Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians, Haaretz reported on Tuesday.

The report followed the release of footage from a confrontation on Saturday in which armed settlers are said to have fired on rock-throwing Palestinians as Israeli army soldiers stood by watching. The video, posted online by the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem — which provides cameras to Palestinians to monitor the behavior of Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank — drew international attention and raised questions over the mission of the Israeli soldiers.

“The essential mission of Israeli soldiers stationed in the West Bank is to protect settlers against Palestinians,” Robert Wright wrote in The Atlantic of the episode, which left at least one Palestinian wounded. “The job of protecting Palestinians against settlers falls to a separate Israeli police force that, as it happens, is massively understaffed.”


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Reply "Citizen journalism" focuses on Israeli occupation (Original post)
Scurrilous May 2012 OP
Scurrilous May 2012 #1

Response to Scurrilous (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 04:01 AM

1. Why Israeli Settlers Shot an Unarmed Palestinian


"When West Bank settlers shoot at unarmed Palestinians while Israeli soldiers look on without intervening, that's a story--especially when one of the Palestinians suffers a head wound. So it's natural that this weekend's conflict near the Palestinian village of Asira al-Qibliya has been covered widely--in 972, the Guardian, the Washington Post, Haaretz, the Daily Dish, and elsewhere. Still, it's important to appreciate how unsurprising this story really is, and how unexceptional its fundamentals are.

The essential mission of Israeli soldiers stationed in the West Bank is to protect settlers against Palestinians. The job of protecting Palestinians against settlers falls to a separate Israeli police force that, as it happens, is massively understaffed. This imbalance--ample troops who are de facto allies of the settlers, dinky police force that could in theory help Palestinians but never seems to be around--is a recipe for the harassment of Palestinians and worse.

This helps explain why settlers have repeatedly, with their impunity all but guaranteed, burned or cut down the olive trees of Palestinian farmers. And it helps explain why some settlers apparently feel comfortable shooting at Palestinians while Israeli soldiers are a few feet away. All of this notwithstanding the fact that the settlers live in the West Bank in violation of international law, whereas the Palestinians are there lawfully."


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