Change the IDF Rules of Engagement
Change the IDF Rules of Engagement

Every Friday, activists from the ISM visiting mainly from the United States and the EU,  along with Israeli anarchists, go to Judea and Samaria (the 'West Bank') and help the Arabs organize demonstrations against the Security Fence and Israeli soldiers sent to protect it.

The security fence is a no brainer, having reduced suicide bombings in Israel by 95%, but the Arabs try to deconstruct that fact by falsely calling it an “apartheid wall.”

You can always spot the ISMers from abroad who join these demonstrations by their backpacks. Such demonstrations have become a form of “activism tourism” for wannabe revolutionaries in the US and EU, some such actions providing them college credit at American colleges through part of the ISM’s campaigns. You need only go to You Tube every week on the Internet to watch that week’s demo (riot).

ISM press releases and emails always describe these activities as “nonviolent”, claiming the demonstrators conduct themselves civilly in an exercise of freedom of speech. But in the next breath they mention that there was stone throwing at the IDF. 

Stone throwing is hardly nonviolent, but to audiences in America it seems like  a childish prank. They don't see the size of the stones - or their impact.. The ISM also tries to suggest the “shebab” (Arab boys) throw these stones to dismiss the actual violence  that does takes place - in other words, it's all fun and games.

The Koran speaks of throwing stones at the devil. In this case, the devil is Israel so this also becomes a religious occupation.

IDF soldiers are under strict orders not use live ammunition against the stone throwers because of the deception in the media that diminishes the violence being foisted on IDF soldiers every week. The soldiers do use nonlethal weapons to defend themselves and disperse those attempting to break past the fence.

In ISM lingo, however, nonlethal teargas is reported as chemical weapons attacks against Palestinians equal to that used in Syria by the Assad regime. Noise and stink bombs are equated with deadly force in their propaganda.The fact is teargas is a crowd control tool that is nonlethal that is used even in western cities where riots can occur. The difference is those western riots are not a weekly event such as the Israeli government tolerates from the Arabs and their ISM supporters.

IDF rules of engagement specify that soldiers have permission to shoot in self-defense if they see an Arab with a gun. That is, if they  see an Arab with an assault rifle, the IDF soldiers can shoot him unless he is a Palestinian policeman.

Those who make up the rules need to take a hard look at the current rules of engagement and how they are not protecting our soldiers. Stones are not thrown as if a small child is throwing pebbles (slightly larger rocks can be as deadly). In many cases, stones are thrown at IDF soldiers by the use of slingshots the Arabs take with them every week with the sole purpose of attacking the IDF.

Research has proven that those slingshots actually are as deadly as guns and in many cases more deadly than a .22 in terms of velocity and the harm they can cause. In fact, some slingshots have the capacity to do as much harm as a 9mm Luger automatic pistol. If IDF rules of engagement permit the soldiers to shoot on site anyone carrying a gun, the same rules should apply to anyone carrying a slingshot—no exceptions.

IDF soldiers should shoot to kill. The stone throwing will stop.

It is illegal for ISM activists from abroad to go to join such demonstrations, yet they do, answering recruiting ads abroad. The Israeli courts, sadly, have created a revolving door for these people by restricting reentry to the' West Bank' for two weeks in many cases once they are caught and remanded. The ISMers are right back there again.

Their purpose, of course, is to suggest to worldwide media that the stone throwers are nonviolent. Israel’s Interior Ministry and the Military play the fool to this tactic and so the same scenario continues week after week with Israeli boys being exposed to harm in order to avoid “international incidents” with the consulates of the countries from whence the ISMers come.

This regular weekly game is deadly for IDF soldiers. It’s deadly also for the Arabs who are encouraged to use slingshots to assault Israeli soldiers any time they like, because inevitably someone gets too close.

The rules of engagement need to be changed to consider stone throwing, especially by a slingshot, as the equivalent of carrying a lethal weapon that can kill and IDF soldiers should be permitted to shoot on sight anyone carrying or using a slingshot the same as if confronting an Arab with an AK-47.

IDF soldiers are told if they see an Arab with a rifle or handgun to shoot first and not wait to be shot. The same authority must now allow the same rule of engagement with slingshots. IDF soldiers are not political pawns for the government to play with.

And using this common sense approach would also diminish stone throwing at our soldiers and citizens in general.

If the Arabs and ISM want to march peacefully as an exercise of freedom of speech, so be it. But stone throwing or carrying a deadly slingshot must be stopped cold. And if it means shooting Arabs who do this, then so be it.