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Israeli Preparations to Quell Any Palestinian Mass Uprising in the West Bank

Israeli preparations to quell any Palestinian mass uprising in W. Bank

[ 09/03/2011 - 11:00 AM ]


 Israeli Haaretz newspaper said that the commandership of the Israeli army prepared one year ago a comprehensive plan to combat any outbreak of widespread protests in the West Bank, but now it is embarking on making changes to it in light of the popular uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt.

The newspaper quoted senior Israeli occupation forces officers who served in the West Bank as saying that they have a feeling that there is no way to deal effectively with any non-violent popular uprising by the Palestinians.

Senior officers still operating in the West Bank also opined that any possible Palestinian uprising in the West Bank would be non-violent and small, and not like what happened in Egypt.

Other officers said that the Palestinian West Bankers at the present time are still tired of the second intifada.

The newspaper also stated that among the lessons being learned now in the Israeli army is the need to make preparations based not only on regular intelligence that is gathered about the plans and the intentions of the Palestinian organizations, but also on what is taking place within the various groups making up Palestinian society, and in particular the messages being sent over the Internet, through social networking sites such as Facebook.

It added that the Israeli army, in the event of a popular uprising, will not be able to count on the Palestinian authority forces, so it is now searching for other channels within the local civilian leadership.

Israeli Occupation Army Does Not Believe It Can Contain A Widespread Revolution In The West Bank

Wednesday March 09, 2011 05:03 by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies

In light with the current events and protests against the ruling regimes in some Arab countries, and the latest removal of Egyptian and Tunisian presidents, the Israeli occupation amy’s so-called Central Command in the West Bank has been tightly monitoring what is happening in the Arab world, and updating its operational plans for an anticipated nonviolent uprising in the occupied territories.

Although plans to deal with massive protests in the West Bank are already there, the army started adjusting these plans following the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia, Israeli daily, Haaretz, reported.

Haaretz, one of the largest news outlets in Israel, stated that former and current Israeli army commanders in the occupied West Bank believe that Israel cannot effectively deal with widespread nonviolent protests, similar to the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions.

Yet, the commanders also believe that “the chances for a totally nonviolent revolution in the occupied territories are low”, and that “certain elements will use the situation to attack the Israeli army”.

Yet, Palestinians, supported by Israeli and International peace activists, who are leading massive protests against the Annexation Wall and settlement, are involved in peaceful protests and are determined to continue the peaceful and popular approach despite being subject to excessive use of force by the army.

According to Haaretz, an army officer said that even before protests took place in Tunisia and Egypt, Israel anticipated such events, and presented plans that would deal with such situations, including the methods and crowd-dispersal means that would be used.

Haaretz stated that amidst the current usage of social network sites, the army realized the need to make preparations that are not only based on intelligence regarding intentions of Palestinian groups, but also on what Palestinians and their supporters are sending over the net, especially on social networking sites, such as twitter and Facebook.

But army commanders in the occupied territories said that, as long as the protestors do not attempt to march to Jewish settlements, the army does not need to prevent massive protests in the occupied territories.

The commanders also are considering the possibility that the protestors will try to damage sections of the Annexation Wall or checkpoints, and that should such incidents take place, “the army would use teargas and rubber-coated metal bullets”.

But ongoing experiences with the way the army deals with nonviolent protests against the Wall and settlements, push local Palestinian nonviolent leaders to believe the army will resort to more lethal weapons, especially since dozens of casualties were reported due to the army's use of excessive force against nonviolent protesters.

As for the Palestinian Authority security forces in the West Bank, and while “acknowledging their strategic role and security cooperation with Israel in the last two years”, Israeli security agencies do not believe that P.A security forces will be helpful in the event of a popular uprising, and that in this regard, the army is trying to locate other channels within the local civilian leaders in the territories.

Furthermore, the several army battalion commanders who are involved in operational tasks in the occupied territories are currently participating in seminars, briefing sessions and workshops, while brigade commanders are participating in discussions regarding operation plans in preparation for such anticipated massive popular protests, Haaretz concluded.

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