‘Under Attack’: the Golani Brigade’s treatment of Palestinians in Al-Khalil/Hebron

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Israeli soldiers arresting a Palestinian youth at a Hebron checkpoint. (Photo: AFP)

A newly released report submitted to the United Nations by international organizations working in Al-Khalil (Hebron) documents a sharp increase in serious human rights violations against Palestinian civilians, particularly youth and children, living in the Old City and Tel Rumeida.

Since its arrival on December 27, 2011, the Israeli Golani Brigade has undertaken deliberate harassment and targeting of the Palestinian population of Al-Khalil, according to the report by Christian Peacemaker Teams and International Solidarity Movement, among others.

The report documents an increase in arrests and detentions of adults and children, serious physical injuries sustained while in military custody, home invasions, and an increase in the number and duration of arbitrary detentions of civilians at checkpoints. It also documents harassment of and attempts to silence international observers attempting to document these abuses.

And as for the usual military justifications, these human rights violations have occurred without any observed provocation on the part of Palestinians. These eye-witness accounts, either reported to or recorded by Internationals working in the city, are believed to represent only a small portion of the total number of abuses. For example:

On Thursday, January 12th: Golani beat a developmentally disabled young man when he knocked on the checkpoint door after they closed it in front of him. That evening, they attacked his mother and severely beat the teenager’s younger brother, cracking his skull, and then arrested the two young men.

On Tuesday, January 17th: Golani entered a man’s home at night, pushed the family out of their house, including their 1½ year old son, and beat the father, for which he required medical treatment.

On Friday, January 20th: Golani held a 10 and 12 year-old boy behind the gate of the Beit Romano settlement. A witness said the boys had been wearing ski masks because of the cold weather, but had not been throwing rocks, as the soldiers claimed. The soldiers gave the boys’ parents a list containing the names of five other boys from the Old City, saying that if the parents brought those boys to the gate, the soldiers would release the other two.

Internationals working in Al-Khalil have called for an immediate withdrawal of the Golani Brigade, citing fears that the abuses will continue to escalate and make life unbearable for Palestinians should the soldiers remain another two to five months as expected.

The full report is available here for viewing, along with video and photos.

About Christian Peacemaker Teams and the International Solidarity Movement

Christian Peacemaker Teams (www.cpt.org/) offers an organized, nonviolent alternative to war and other forms of lethal inter-group conflict. CPT provides organizational support to persons committed to faith-based nonviolent alternatives in situations where lethal conflict is an immediate reality or is supported by public policy. The International Solidarity Movement (www.palsolidarity.org) is a Palestinian-led movement committed to resisting the Israeli apartheid in Palestine by using nonviolent, direct-action methods and principles.

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10 Responses

  1. seafoid
    March 2, 2012, 9:40 am

    There apparently is no other way to continue the Jewish presence in Hebron. It has become so poisoned that they need 24 hour army backup.

    I don’t know how any Israeli Jew can raise kids in Hebron . What parent would willingly place a child in such a cauldron of hatred? Imagine the psychological damage and stress the kids suffer. I suppose it’s all linked to AIPAC and the cult of Zionism and then some.

  2. merlot
    March 2, 2012, 11:07 am

    I remember a similar escalation of attacks by soldiers in Hebron back in 2002. It ended when the responsible soldiers were transferred. They were transferred only after Umran Abu Hamdieh died after he was kidnapped, beaten, and thrown from a moving jeep by Israeli soldiers. I have no faith that any lessons were learned from that incident.

  3. Refaat
    March 2, 2012, 1:26 pm

    Thank God, israel can’t kill snow or snowman in Al-Khalil. If they could, they would.

  4. Bumblebye
    March 2, 2012, 3:33 pm

    Baroness Jenny Tonge has frequently spoken out against Israel and its occupation, but it seems she’s caused a storm (in the Liberal teacup) with her latest:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/mar/02/tonge-says-clegg-acted-hastily
    She’s had the Liberal party whip withdrawn after saying “Israel would not be there forever” – half the full quote – at Middlesex University. She goes on to say the American people are going to have enough of the Israel lobby, Israel will lose support, and reap what it has sown.
    I say, please let it be sooner rather than later.

    • seafoid
      March 3, 2012, 2:33 pm

      I think it could all run beyond Israel’s control reasonably quickly. I would be concerned, if I were an Israeli policymaker, about how much solid diplomatic support Israel is likely to have over the next few years as the situation continues to deteriorate and Israel moves further to the right.

      I think the biggest worry for Israel has to be how the hasbara works on those now in their 20s in Europe and the US. They have talked themselves into it in Hebrew but getting the goys onside in English is a total different kettle of metaphors.

  5. justsayin
    March 6, 2012, 10:26 pm

    I wish I was there to slide down park street, that hill would be funnnnn
    in that link with the snow

  6. giladg
    March 8, 2012, 6:10 am

    When your foundations are solid (you know where your roots are) and the real enemy and violent people are the Palestinians, then living in the city that was once the capital of Judah and the burial site of the your forefathers Abraham, Issac and Jacob, is spiritually rewarding. The Palestinians are the ones who are the racists and want apartheid. They want all Jews to leave Hebron. The Jews who live in Hebron are brave and outstanding individuals who know and understand that the Palestinians are out to wipe Israel off the map. Stop Palestinian apartheid now! Support Jews being able to live in their historic capital without the danger of having their wives and children murdered by Islamic terrorists.

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