IDF Facilitated Arab Looting, Say Outpost Residents
Residents of a demolished outpost in Judea say that the IDF facilitated Arab looting of their belongings Sunday. According to residents of Mitzpe Avichai, near Kiryat Arba, trucks sent by the IDF's Civil Administration took belongings from the site and dumped them in a landfill where Arabs were apparently waiting to cart them away.
The residents of the outpost were evicted from it one month ago, in nighttime raid. They took only what they could carry, leaving behind most of their equipment and belongings – including refrigerators, beds, solar thermal collectors and cabinets.
There are conflicting versions regarding what happened in the weeks that passed since the eviction, but what is ceratin is that Civil Administration forces arrived at the site Sunday and took these belongings away in several trucks. Residents say that while refrigerators were put into one truck, most of the other equipment was apparently classified as garbage and was thrown into the other trucks. According to Aryeh Davis, the residents were told to await the trucks at the regional IDF headquarters.
However, only one of these trucks – the one with the refrigerators – made it to the HQ. The residents were shocked to learn that the rest of their equipment had been taken to a landfill near the community of Carmel and dumped there.
"We went there," Davis old Arutz Sheva, "but there were already more than a hundred Arabs there who swooped down on the booty. They had come with pick-up trucks and loaded them up. It seemed like someone had invited them there; someone who knew equipment was scheduled to arrive there. There was nothing left to save. We stood there, five residents among about 100 Arabs who were laughing at us and mocking us, asking if there were more truckloads coming."
According to Davis, the authorities prevented the residents from collecting their own equipment following the eviction. In the time that passed from the eviction to the arrival of the trucks, he said, much equipment had been stolen from the site. All of these developments are documented, he warned, and could lead to court proceedings, even though the residents have lost faith in the court system.
The IDF had a different version of events. The IDF Spokesman's Unit said in response that the residents were given permission to take their equipment but chose not to do so. "After about two weeks in which they abstained from doing so, it was decided to clear the equipment, including valuable belongings, to the regional brigade camp, so that soldiers would not have to guard over the equipment, and in order to prevent damage to the equipment. The equipment was taken to the brigade camp in an orderly fashion, after documentation, and can be claimed there today, too."
After evicting Jews from Yissa Beracha near the Dead Sea last week, police burned building materials that the residents had brought there.