Zionist activists achieved only partial success Thursday in protest operations mounted in response to police's use of pneumatic guns against Jews at Havat Gilad Monday. Half-humorously borrowing a phrase from protest organizers in enemy lands, the protesters labeled their operation a "Day of Rage."
Protesters completely blocked the El Al Junction near Ben Gurion Airport for about 30 minutes. About 30 girls held signs that said - "if you shoot in Havat Gilad, the country will stand still" and "the war is with the Arabs!"
A large police force arrived at the junction and cleared it. About 20 demonstrators were arrested.
Protesters who blocked the entry road to Ramallah, near Ofra, were also dispersed by police.
At the Shilat Junction near Modiin, a dozen activists tried to block traffic in the afternoon but police, who had positioned themselves nearby ahead of time, acted quickly and arrested all of them. A brief chase was conducted after one of them (see video).
Activists also set fire to tires at the Ginot Saharov Junction at the entrance to Jerusalem. Protesters held signs in support of IDF soldier Shimon Weisman, who was jailed when he refused to return to his unit after his home at Havat Gilad was razed. Police arrived to disperse the demonstrators and said that traffic was flowing smoothly.
Veteran activist Itamar Ben-Gvir said the protests were "a struggle for civil rights and justice. When police fire upon innocents, it is only right that the protest be a furious one. The blame for the road blockages rests upon the shoulders of [Prime Minister Binyamin] Netanyahu and [Public Security Minister Yitzchak] Aharonovich."
Shilat Junction / Photo by Yoni Kempinski
In Bat Yam: "Has Qaddafi come to Israel?" / Photo by Mordechai Brener, HaKol HaYehudi