As the war continues on, violence against Palestinians by Jewish settlers has been increasing and intensifying, as we read in the Jerusalem Post:
Israeli human rights organizations and activists have reported an increase in the incidents of settler violence in the West Bank as well as in the level of the violence since the beginning of the war following the Hamas terrorist surprise attack of southern kibbutz communities on Oct. 7.
They say the extremist settlers have exploited the lack of public attention on the West Bank to carry out attacks and threaten Palestinian villages, including most recently threatening the village of Susiya.
According to the NGO Yesh Din, settlers have attacked Palestinians in more than 100 incidents in at least 62 towns and villages in the West Bank under cover of the war from Oct. 7-22.
“The frequency (of the attacks) has increased. In Masafer Yatta and the Jordan Valley people are used to violence from both settlers and soldiers, it has been going on for years, but now it is multiple times a day and in multiple villages,” said a 28-year-old Israeli veteran activist who asked not to be identified out of concern for his safety. “And these days it always come with a threat: if you don’t leave within 24 hours we will kill you…and it is working.”
He noted that a day ago a policeman who has known him for years pointed a gun at him through the windshield of his car, and two weeks ago he was punched in the face by a settler.
“Since the war started there is a situation where you can’t even distinguish between a soldier and a settler. Since the start of the war a lot of weapons have been distributed to an already heavily armed population so in any situation they are all wearing uniforms or partial uniforms and you never know if they are actually a reserve soldier or a settler,” he said. “Everything has gone up significantly—the main thing is the violence, the readiness of soldiers and settlers to shoot. I can teel by the number of times a gun has been put in my face.”