Protest in Bilin (Archives)
Photo: Reuters
To get sprayed with soiled water? Fayyad
Photo: EPA
Security fence gets demolished in Bilin
Photo: Ohad Zwigenberg

WikiLeaks: Israel irked by West Bank protests

Minutes from 2010 meeting between Israeli, US officials reveal IDF commanders frustrated with non-violent Palestinian protests; claim Israel 'not good at dealing with Gandhi'

After months of foot dragging, WikiLeaks has published all 251,287 documents it had originally planned to leak to the media, many of which refer to Israel's political and diplomatic relations.


In one such document, heads of the security establishment detail Israel's difficulty in dealing with the non-violent protests in the West Bank.


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In a 2010 meeting with US officials, GOC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Avi Mizrahi expressed his frustration over the protests in the West Bank, including demonstrations against the construction of the security fence in Bilin and Naalin.


According to leaked minutes from the meeting, Maj.-Gen. Mizrahi claimed that the aim of these protests was to escalate tensions, and warned that the IDF will act firmly against any such protests, even if they seem non-violent.

הפגנה בנעלין. "על מה הם מוחים?" (צילום: רויטרס)

'If PA doesn't prevent protests, the IDF will.' (Archive picture: Reuters)


During the meeting, the Americans noted in writing that less violent protests are expected to frustrate the IDF even more than violent ones, and quoted head of the Defense Ministry's political department Amos Gilad as saying, "We're not good at dealing with Gandhi."


Maj.-Gen. Mizrahi noted during the 2010 meeting that after visiting two such demonstrations, he believes the residents were only protesting because they were told to do so.


According to the Central Command chief, the villages are not in proximity to the fence, and the residents have no altercations with settlers and have free passage from one place to the other.


"Many of these demonstrations are organized by (Palestinian) suspects," Maj.-Gen. Mizrahi told the American officials, adding that he and other IDF and Civil Administration officials met with members of the Palestinian security establishment and clarified that if they don’t work to prevent the protests – the IDF will.


Mizrahi then warned that he will send trucks with soiled water – a crowd dispersal method also known as a "skunk bomb," and that if Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad shows up at the protest and gets sprayed with the water, "Everyone would look bad."




פרסום ראשון: 09.03.11, 19:19
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