Israeli Settler Convicted of Inciting Violence Online Against Palestinians, Soldiers

Eliraz Fein admitted using social media to call for attacks on Israeli soldiers and Arabs

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Eliraz Fein of Yitzhar at a Jerusalem court in July 2014 after her arrest. Fein, heavily pregnant, is accompanied by a man in street clothes wearing a police cap.
Eliraz Fein of Yitzhar at a Jerusalem court in July 2014 after her arrest.Credit: Emil Salman
Yotam Berger
Yotam Berger

A 24-year-old female settler was convicted Wednesday for inciting violence against Israeli soldiers and Palestinians on social media.

After Israeli security forces demolished illegally built structures in her settlement of Yitzhar, right-wing activist Eliraz Fein wrote online: “I’m in favor of throwing stones (at Jews; obviously, there’s no question about Arabs) in certain situations,” adding, “Even if the stone leads to the death of a soldier!!!”

The prosecution said that mere hours after she wrote her post, stones were thrown at Israeli soldiers in Yitzhar. 

In another post, she wrote: “I’ll back stone throwers against any outside body, even in cases where they weren’t necessary.”

Fein, who admitted to all the charges against her, was also charged with writing Facebook posts calling for violence against Arabs.

After 16-year-old Palestinian Mohammed Abu Khdeir was murdered in East Jerusalem by a group of Jewish extremists in July 2014, Fein wrote, “I’m proud and happy to discover there are Jews who don’t stand on the sidelines and remain silent!! I send a blessing to be strong and courageous to the detainees (who I don’t even know) suspected of the murder of the Arab in the Abu Khdeir family.”

After the arson attack on the Church of the Multiplication on the shores of Lake Kinneret in June 2015, Fein wrote, “Good morning! This time it was a church, out of consideration for Muslim sensibilities...”

And following the murder of three members of the Dawabsheh family in the West Bank village of Duma in July 2015, she wrote, “Terrify them, make them understand that Jewish blood isn’t free for the taking. ... I see this as a correct and appropriate deed.” 

The charges were filed against Fein in August 2016. In his ruling on Wednesday, Petah Tikva Magistrate’s Court Judge Hagai Tarsi noted that she had admitted to the crimes.

Fein’s lawyer, Gil Eshet, said she had taken responsibility for “a number of statements that were mistaken,” adding that she was a “young woman who has never been involved in any act of violence against anybody, nor done anything for others to carry out any violence whatsoever.”

Sentencing will take place in September, although Fein is unlikely to serve any jail time. The State Prosecutor’s Office has said it will ask for six months’ community service.

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