The allegations in a report by the leftist B’tselem organization released Monday about police abuses against Arab children who throw rocks at Israeli drivers dominated the Israeli media all morning. They may or may not be true, says Meir Indor, chairman of the Almagor terror victims’ organization – but the report is irrelevant. “The criteria they use relate to the rights of criminals, but Arab rock-throwing is not an individual crime – it’s a nationalistic act of war, and must be treated as such.”
The B’tselem report claimed that Israeli police have been abusing the rights of Arab youths suspected of throwing rocks at Israeli drivers and passerby in several neighborhoods of Jerusalem, especially the City of David neighborhood (Silwan). The report claims that police forcefully invaded the homes of several suspects, rousing them from their beds, and prohibiting their parents from being present during their questioning as required by Israeli law. In addition, the report said that many of the youths had complained that police assaulted them as they were being arrested.
“We are certainly not for the abrogation of individual rights for criminals,” Indor told Israel National News. “But the rock throwing by Arab youths is far more than criminal – it’s nothing less than an act of war. It’s become all too common, and it’s life threatening.” Indor himself was injured by a large rock thrown at him by Arab youths on the Mt. Of Olives in October.
“Today, when one of these youths is arrested, he is legally permitted to basically sit in an interrogation room and make fun of police,” Indor said. “The youth is required by law to have his father present, so of course no headway is made in the interrogation. And besides, the youths have a whole array of liberal and leftist organizations, like B’tselem, at the ready to defend them, regardless of what they have done.”
In that sense, said Indor, B’tselem is working against Israel’s interests – and, rather than be permitted to continue harming Israel’s security by defending terrorists, the organization should be brought up on charges of treason. “B’tselem has a huge budget, much of it supplied from abroad. Police know who these people are, but are powerless to stop them.
“We plan to introduce legislation that will change the law and reclassify these kinds of attacks as terror incidents, that will subject these youths to stiffer penalties, and especially to a different process, other than the normal one that applies to criminals,” Indor said. “In a society that suffers from terrorism as Israel does, we accept that it is reasonable for people to stand in line at the mall and be checked by a security agent. In the same way, it should be reasonable to expect that the individual rights of terrorists – no matter how young they are – be suspended to ensure the safety of society.”