“Volunteers came from across the country to help & had their weapons confiscated.”
Yoni Kempinski , May 20 , 2021
One of the most disturbing features of the current “Israel-Gaza” conflict has been the spreading of the conflict to cities within Israel, to the so-called “mixed cities” where Jews and Arabs have lived side-by-side for decades. Suddenly, Jews are coming under attack literally by their neighbors, and, worse still, the police have seemingly been rendered helpless by the exploding situation.
Arutz Sheva spoke with Attorney Nati Rom of the Honenu organization, to get a fuller picture of what’s going on in locations like Lod, Ramle, Jaffa, and Akko, and how citizens and police are responding.
“Over the last few days, I’ve represented around 200 people in court,” Attorney Rom relates. “These are people who came to help out, volunteers from across the country who came to protect the residents of these mixed cities with their weapons, and actually had their weapons confiscated by the police.”
Who exactly are these volunteers, and what kind of help are they giving?
“Many of them are veterans of combat service and they’re coming to cities such as Lod and Ramle, and also to Jerusalem, to protect the Jewish residents, to escort them to the stores, and also to protect the empty homes of Jews who have fled the cities out of fear. There are hundreds of such volunteers, and we should be supporting them, not fighting them.”
Have a lot of people fled these mixed cities?
“Many families have left. According to the police, everything is under control, but when you actually get there and see the burned-out police cars in the streets, the hundreds of Molotov cocktails strewn on the ground, the rocks thrown at Jewish cars, then you know the truth. The police have lost control – not just in Lod, but also in Jaffa, in Akko.”
How did such a situation develop?
“For years, nothing has been done to deal with the threat posed by illegal weapons held by Arabs in these areas. At the very least, now, we need to take action and confiscate all these weapons, in order to restore security. This is also to the benefit of those Arabs who don’t want a part in the terrorism.”
So why aren’t the police acting? What’s stopping them?
“This is something that needs to be investigated. I personally was attacked by a Molotov cocktail and also a grenade, and the police were afraid to do anything.”
And then there’s the other “front” in this battle – the PR war. What do you think we should be doing there?
“We need to be showing pictures of what’s going on in these cities all over the world. There’s no ‘symmetry’ about this conflict, and the world has to know what this is really all about. It’s radical Islam, terrorists who are Israeli citizens in every respect, with all the rights that come with citizenship, all the benefits – and they’re still fighting us. No other country in the world would accept such a situation.”
And your personal response has been to strengthen the settlement community, with the reestablishment of a town in Samaria.
“That’s right. This is our response. They want to uproot, so we rebuild. We’ve returned to the site of the town of Evyatar [first established after the murder of Evyatar Borovsky in 2013 and forcibly evacuated], near the Tapuah Junction where a young yeshiva student was killed just a few weeks ago. There are already 25 families there, and we’re building more homes on government-owned land, and we hope many more families will come.
“In this way, we are renewing our covenant with the Land. This is Biblical Zionism 2021, connecting people from all over the world to the heartland of Judea and Samaria, as a preparation for redemption, for Moshiach.”
Bimheirah beyameinu, Amen!