On Saturday, a group of Israeli activists came under attack from masked settlers who used slingshots to hurl stones at them while they walked between Palestinian villages in the South Hebron Hills, close to the illegal outpost of Havat Maon.
According to the Israeli Ta’ayush activist who filmed the video, they immediately called the police upon seeing the settlers, but in the meantime, an army jeep appeared, and did nothing. “The settlers were not intimidated at all by the arrival of the soldiers and the soldiers did not arrest them or even try to establish their identity,” he said.
The activists demanded the soldiers take action against the settlers for assaulting them with stones, but they refused, and the pair of settlers began running away. Only once the police jeep arrived was one of the perpetrators apprehended. According to the activist, the other settler who threw stones was only arrested a day later.
Settlers from this outpost are known for being especially belligerent, and I myself have seen young children throw stones and curse at Israelis while they accompany Palestinian residents in the area, who have often been beaten while walking this path.
Rarely if ever are settlers apprehended, because IDF soldiers refuse to take any disciplinary action against them, even though they are authorized to act as police officers in the West Bank when necessary. In this specific case, it is fortunate that the police officers decided to actually do their job.