Friday, June 20, 2008

No Law - take 2


In a previous blog entry I bemoaned that fact that the law in Israel often exists only on paper. The Knesset passes laws and the courts rule on them, but the police and other government authorities often just ignore them. This is the sad state of legal culture in the Jewish State.

The latest example is described in detail, in this posting on the blog of The Magnes Zionist.

I short, the Israeli groups Breaking The Silence has been conducting tours of Hebron, to show Israelis and others the extent of the human rights violations perpetrated on the local Arabs by both Jewish settlers and the army. The settlers have done everything in there power to stop these tours, even resorting to violence. Breaking The Silence went to court - all the way to the supreme court as it turned out - an obtained an injunction that forbade the settlers from interfering in these tours and ordered the local police to protect the Breaking the Silence tour participants taking these tours.

Last week the settlers again blocked a tour, and the police again refused to enforce their right to take these tours. The local police commander, in fact, labeled the Breaking The Silence folks as "provocateurs," "militants," and "lawbreakers." Assertions such as these, which aren't supported with any real facts or evidence, just prove how much the police are in bed with the settlers. The background for these absurd statements is the weakness of the police, and its unwillingness to uphold the law, when the law does not appeal to them. And by caving in to the settlers’ violence, the police have prevented the tours from being conducted, and proved that as always in Hebron, violence pays, and the law be damned.

The image at the top of this posting is a full page ad taken out by several notable Israelis decrying this sorry state of affairs, and demanding that the law be enforced. A full traslation can be found here.

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