Hilltop Youth setters West Bank 311 (R).
(photo credit:REUTERS/Gil Cohen Magen)
The IDF is looking into the possibility that soldiers tipped off settler
activists who stormed the Ephraim Regional Brigade base Monday night.
army has opened an investigation into the series of incidents that took place:
settlers breaking through the fence on the Jordanian border, the stoning of
Palestinian cars near Kedumim, the raid on the Ephraim Brigade base (also near
Kedumim) and a subsequent attack on IDF soldiers.
Right-wing extremists attack IDF base in West Bank
“It all appears to have
been part of a coordinated attack to prevent the IDF from carrying out an
operation,” an officer said on Wednesday.
The IDF also plans to clarify
rules of engagement for soldiers serving in the West Bank who come into contact
with far-right activists such as those who invaded the base Monday.
officers have criticized the way the soldiers at the base handled the incident
and how the attackers succeeded in leaving the scene without being
“We need to begin to treat these people differently,” one
officer said. “It is very difficult to make that mental shift, but it is
necessary to prevent these events from happening again.”
The IDF Central
Command decided Wednesday to establish a force mandated to repel attacks on
military bases. It will be stationed in the West Bank and will have the ability
to reach bases quickly.
In addition, soldiers will be given the authority
to arrest attackers – something only police had until now – so as not to repeat
the failure of Monday night, when none of the attackers was caught.
coordinated attack was understood within the IDF as an attempt to prevent the
evacuation of illegal outposts, which they feared was planned for Monday. In
addition, the so-called “price-tag” attacks are viewed as part of a larger effort
to deter future government evacuations of outposts or settlements.
2009, then-commander of the Judea and Samaria Division Brig.-Gen. Noam Tivon
distributed a booklet to battalion commanders in which he recommended that they
identify soldiers in their units who might leak information about imminent
evacuations to settlers.
IDF officers said the military would step up
efforts to prevent future attacks. Under consideration, for example, is issuing
orders banning from the West Bank activists suspected of participating in “price
tag” attacks against soldiers and Palestinians.
In September, OC Central
Command Maj.-Gen. Avi Mizrahi issued orders banning 13 settlers from entering
the West Bank. Such orders are issued when the IDF and Shin Bet (Israel Security
Agency) obtain intelligence information regarding a suspect but the information
is not enough to press charges in court.
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