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‘Money Makes the Bilin Protests Go ‘Round’

The real reason for Bilin riots is that protesters earn cash for throwing stones, says the IDF, which is relocating the fence, the supposed cause.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 6/27/2011, 2:45 PM / Last Update: 6/27/2011, 3:57 PM

The real reason for weekly Bil'in riots is that protesters earn money from international leftists for throwing stones at soldiers, says the IDF, which is relocating the fence, the supposed cause of disturbances.

IDF Colonel Sa'ar Tzur told reporters Sunday, “Protests here will continue because there is a lot of money involved. For a long time this has not been a political or diplomatic issue. They get money from foreign donors.

One soldier who used to be stationed at the Bil’in and Nil'in villages, where anarchists have fueled Friday riots for more than four years, told Israel National News, “One Arab told me he is paid several hundreds shekels each time he demonstrates. It is good business for them.”

The very existence of the violent riots, as the IDF prepares to relocate the fence under High Court orders, underscores the likelihood that money is the reason for the demonstrations. Court judges sided with pro-Arab petitioners that the route of the fence infringes on private Arab land that does not present a security danger to Israel.

Last Friday, as IDF bulldozers prepared to tear down the fence and relocate it, the riots were more intense than they have been for several weeks.

“It is hard to say that we are friends, but it is like the experience of a bunch of guys who play soccer on Fridays. Everyone comes and does their thing and goes home pleased. We know the regular protestors by name,” according to IDF sources quoted in Independent Media Review and Analysis (IMRA).

“Two weeks ago they called out to one of the commanders by name, “Make sure your soldiers don't pass this point,"

European funds pay up to 4,000 shekels a month to protesters, a salary that far surpasses the minimum wage in Israel.