IDF asks state to arm PA Security Forces
The IDF on Wednesday issued a recommendation to the political echelon, asking that it arm and militarily strengthen the Palestinian Authority (PA) in apparent hopes that doing so will end the wave of Arab terror.
According to the recommendation of military officials, PA Security Forces will be given armored vehicles, weapons and ammunition so as to let them enter terror hotbeds that they are more familiar with than the IDF.
The recommendation is highly surprising, particularly given that the establishment of the PA and the influx of weapons to its security forces in the 1994 Oslo Accords fueled the murder of over a thousand Jews in the 2000 Second Intifada terror war; a PA official in 2013 bragged that 70% of the terrorists behind attacks in the first year of the terror war were PA security officers armed by Israel.
PA Security Forces in 2011 murdered the nephew of a Likud minister at Joseph’s Tomb in Shechem (Nablus), and just last month allowed the holy site to be burned and desecrated, several days before beating Jewish worshipers.
Even before the Second Intifada, PA Security Forces back in September 1996 shot 15 Israelis to death, and recruited terrorists to its ranks. The PA has recently been actively inciting the ongoing attacks, making the prospect of relying on it to end the terror questionable at best.
Green light to terror employees?
In another recommendation, the security system also called to enlarge the amount of work permits given to Palestinian Arabs in Judea and Samaria – particularly for young Arabs – allowing them to enter sovereign Israeli territory.
It also called to enlarge the number of Arab building permits in Area C of Judea and Samaria, which is under full Israeli control according to the Oslo Accords, and to release Arab prisoners, potentially including seasoned terrorists.
The calls are also surprising, given the massive illegal Arab construction funded by the EU in Area C which the IDF and other enforcement branches have not acted to stem, with the High Court blocking the carrying out of countless demolition orders.
Also casting doubt on the recommendation is the fact that Arab employees have used their position in countless occasions to launch lethal attacks on Jews, including an Arab terrorist employed at a restaurant in Yafo who just last Thursday murdered two Jews in Tel Aviv – the terrorist had a work permit.
It goes without saying that released terrorists have returned to terror in countless instances, many times returning to lethal attacks as in the case of the murderer of Police chief superintendent Baruch Mizrahi just before Passover 2014, to name but one example.
A “limited uprising”
Announcing the recommendations, a senior IDF officer on Wednesday said that if Israel doesn’t take significant action, the “limited uprising” – as he termed the terror wave that has already left 22 Israelis murdered – will not end soon.
“We are working on several fronts to reduce the violence index, amid an aspiration to end the event with a minimum of casualties, and to arrest attackers at all levels, including those who throw rocks at Israeli cars,” he said. The officer added that the IDF “is deploying more forces to clash points.”
The officer noted that 95% of the terror attacks have taken place in 12 areas, where the IDF is focusing its forces.
“If four terrorists went out from the village Katna in the last month, including the terrorist who committed the murder two days ago at the gas station on (Highway) 443, we will work in the village as in other regions,” said the officer.
“We put another six brigades into the field, we’ve backed up special forces. We are conducting a lot of arrests, including administrative arrests, and all that is to prevent a deterioration of the situation.”
According to the senior officer, the IDF has identified a rise in breaches of public order, which are now four times as frequent as in calmer times.
He claimed that the PA’s leading Fatah faction isn’t interested in clashing with Israel at the current time, and that the Palestinian side wants to change the current situation, but admitted that there is no estimation as to when the terror wave might end.
“The IDF has abandoned our blood”
Responding to the recommendation, Kedumim Regional Council head Hananel Dorani on Wednesday afternoon strongly denounced the proposal.
“The announcement that the army recommended to the political echelon to arm the Palestinian Authority with weapons and armored vehicles against gun fire…is an abandonment of our lives,” said Dorani.
“Is it necessary to remind how much Jewish blood was spilled from the rifles given to the Arabs?,” he said, recalling how the weapons given in the Oslo Accords were quickly turned on Israel.
“If the senior army commanders aren’t able to provide security themselves and rely on the terrorists of the Palestinian Authority, it would be better for them to step down and let their betters take their place.”
Making the recommendations of militarily strengthening the PA all the more surprising is the fact that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has refused to condemn the murder of Israelis.
Abbas, who heads the Fatah faction, in fact largely set off the current terror wave by praising the bloodshed in Jerusalem “for Allah,” and calling to stop the “filthy” Jews from visiting the Temple Mount, in statements made in mid September.