Barak seeks to end protests against W. Bank commander

Defense minister orders legal advisor to look into possibility of passing legislation to stop right-wingers from harassing Brig.-Gen. Nitzan Alon.

Nitzan Alon 311 (photo credit: IDF's YouTube screen capture)
Nitzan Alon 311
(photo credit: IDF's YouTube screen capture)
Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered his ministry’s legal adviser to look into the possibility of passing emergency legislation that will prevent right-wing extremists from harassing and protesting outside the home of OC Judea and Samaria Division Brig.- Gen. Nitzan Alon.
Barak ordered Achaz Ben-Ari to discuss the issue with Attorney- General Yehuda Weinstein in an effort to put an end to the ongoing protests against Alon and his family.
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Alon, a former commander of the IDF’s General Staff Reconnaissance Unit known as Sayeret Matkal, has come under fire in recent months by Jewish radical right-wing activists who accuse him of holding left-wing political opinions that have affected his conduct as the senior field commander in the West Bank.
In June, right-wing extremists attacked Alon’s military jeep as he was passing through a junction in the West Bank, beating and kicking it.
The activists say Alon was negatively influenced by his wife, who used to volunteer with Machsom Watch, an organization that monitors IDF conduct at checkpoints in Judea and Samaria.
“We will not allow extremists to attack IDF officers,” Barak said on Thursday. “These officers and commanders protect residents of Judea and Samaria and all of Israel’s citizens and allow them to lead a normal life, and it is our job to protect them in return.”
Attacks against government employees has been on the rise recently with extremists also singling out Deputy State Attorney Shai Nitzan for ordering the arrest and interrogation of Rabbis Dov Lior and Ya’acov Yosef as part of an investigation over their endorsement of a Jewish religious book that allegedly incites violence.
There are a number of explanations for the attacks against Alon. Some activists have accused him of instituting restrictions on the entry of Jews to pray at Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus. He has also been accused of raising the possibility after the murder of the Fogel family in Itamar earlier this year that the attack was a response to a previous settler attack against Palestinians.
In June, Alon again came under fire after he distributed a document to commanders in the division ordering them to identify soldiers within their units who might leak information to settlers of impending demolitions of settlements and illegal outposts.