Settlers take anger over freeze out on Druze soldiers. Israel Defense Forces elements say settlers have recently been verbally assaulting and humiliating junior officers and soldiers from the Druze community who are enforcing the construction moratorium in the West Bank.
"We also heard things like, 'They should be sent back in trains'. It was shameful," one military source said.
The source further noted that Druze soldiers and junior officers have repeatedly expressed difficulty in handling the settlers' gush of curses, and fear that a response may lead to an escalation.
After the train remark, the source said, "I told that person that a Jew would never make a comment using a Holocaust reference. He understood what he had done, but there are still cases in which unnecessary and harsh statements are made. There were cases in which senior officers were forced to intervene at such friction points in order to calm the situation."
Most confrontations of this nature occur with Border Guard officers and Coordination and Liaison Authority workers.
Recently, in addition to anonymous posters urging soldiers' disobedience, which were distributed near the Samaria territorial brigade, a letter was also circulated describing how Border Guard security forces ("Arab officers"), allegedly arrest only Jews in clashes between Palestinians and settlers.
The letter also says the solders "have come to protect the Palestinian people."
According to the letter, it is the Palestinians who riot, carry out lynches, and hurl stones and blocks. The letter says, "There is no reason a Jewish soldier should come out a sucker."
Soldiers and officers from the Druze community said they have recently been encountering more offensive remarks made by settlers. "We want to do our job, but there are cases, especially recently, due to the freeze, in which we are forced to hear very harsh words and teasing. They are taking their frustration out on us for our part in enforcing the freeze and processing Palestinian complaints about harassment by the settlers," the military source said.
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