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A Guiding Israeli Hand Behind Spike in Arab Murder Rates

Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat
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Israeli police at a murder scene in Lod, last week
Israeli police at a murder scene in Lod, last weekCredit: Ilan Assayag
Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat

Once upon a time, at a remote army camp, a commander asked a soldier to find him a box of matches to light a cigarette. After a while, the soldier came back empty-handed. The foolish commander said disappointedly: "Fine, there’s nothing to be done. Put out the candle and go to sleep."

In Israel the establishment is not foolish; it knows very well that you can light a cigarette with a candle and also light a path toward fighting crime in the Arab community. But instead, it blows out all the candles it has in abundance, and condemns the Arabs to live in the gloom of terror, blood and tears.

The candle was lit, day and night, during the events in May, when thousands of Arabs were arrested and imprisoned, most of whom had nothing to do with what was happening. And to this can be added the reports of brutality within police stations. No less interesting is the fact that the security candles here work overtime, so much so that people from all over the world come here to learn how to fight crime.

But just where decisive action is needed, the candles go out. The police are neutered, stuttering, and helpless. One can understand from this that as long as you engage in violence, shooting, and collecting protection money, you are immune. True, it’s not nice of you to kill your neighbor with a few gunshots, but it’s not terrible. On the other hand, if you attend a demonstration, and worse, if you do so carrying a sign, you may find yourself behind bars.

Some time ago, senior members of the security establishment asked the Shin Bet to get involved in launching an all-out war against crime in Arab society. Later, with great fanfare, the Seif police division was established, whose purpose was to thwart crime in Arab communities. Now they’re talking about an undercover unit. They’re not just talking – photos of the unit’s members are filling social media. James Bond has settled in our midst.

The Arabs, well-versed in disappointment, say, “Too many cooks spoil the dish.” Given the flood of plans and preparations, all that’s left is to ask Arab residents to evacuate their homes to give the police room to maneuver in this holy war. Perhaps later they will force Arabs to shout, “Let the Israeli Police win.”

But the further you get from the mountain, the more clearly it can be seen. And the view from afar is horrifying. In Area C of the West Bank, Israel is abandoning the Palestinian residents to the good graces of the settlers, who, with the courageous cooperation of the army, are destroying homes, shooting and killing innocents, and confiscating water tanks in the searing desert heat. On the Israeli side, meanwhile, the side of law and order, the task of killing, more killing, and still more killing without being held accountable has been assigned to the crime organizations.

The lawbreakers take turns, but the maestro is the same and the result is the same as well: Arab life, here and in Area C, has become hell. Maybe something good will come out of this; finally, the slogan “a land without a people” will be realized.

It’s important to note that the escalation in violence in Arab society – only this past week eight people were murdered – is taking place just as many are impressed by the Arabs’ improved status in the corridors of government. On the one hand, we’ll promote you in government, while on the other hand we’ll make sure you sink in a bloodbath. Isn’t it time to ask why just after the formation of a government with an Arab party, the number of killings has risen to such heights? Every regime has a dark side; sometimes it’s stronger, sometimes it’s weaker. Is this regime’s dark side now rearing its head?

Even in the throes of a murder spree, Arabs are racking up tremendous achievements in science, the arts, high-tech, and the economy. So when you look around, you wonder where all this evil is coming from. It’s impossible not to conclude that there’s a guiding hand here working to balance things. Dear Arabs, you’ve gotten too big for your britches. It’s time to put you back in your place, by stratagem, if necessary. It’s about time you internalized who are the lords of the land.

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