Background on violence by settlers

Image from video footage. Photo: Muna a-Nawaj’ah, a volunteer in B’Tselem’s camera project.

Israeli civilians have perpetrated various forms of violence against Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, damaging their lands, their persons and their property. In recent years, settlers have carried out violent acts under the slogan “price tag.” These are acts of violence aimed at the Palestinian population and Israeli security forces. They generally follow actions by Israeli authorities that are perceived as harming the settlement enterprise, or follow Palestinian violence against settlers. B'Tselem has documented many such acts including the blocking of roads, throwing stones at cars and houses, making incursions into Palestinian villages and land, torching fields, uprooting trees, and other damage to property.

The term "price tag," was coined by settlers and they explained its meaning in media interviews. For example, on 24 July 2008, after Israeli security forces removed a bus that had been placed in the Adey Ad outpost, the head of the settlers' struggle headquarters in Yitzhar was quoted in Ha'aretz as saying, "the police have to understand that there will be a very high price tag for any incident of this kind." He described the harm to Palestinians as "a display of good citizenship that was intended to help the police enforce the planning and building laws in the area on Palestinians." On 15 Nov. 2008, after the Federman Farm outpost was evacuated, Eliezer Melamed, the rabbi of the Har Bracha settlement, was quoted on the NRG website as saying, "the price tag policy appears to be very effective and the security establishment is doing everything it can to break it."

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