Formulating a Response to Homicide Bombers

(Ha'aretz) Amos Harel - Senior officials from the security forces are meeting to formulate a response to the homicide bombing phenomenon. The main ideas under consideration are: Expelling families to Gaza: The emphasis will be on relatives, including parents, who supported the attack before it happened. The Judge Advocate General's Office (JAG) believes the High Court of Justice will not prevent such expulsions, as the state will argue that Gaza and the West Bank are one political unit. House demolitions: Intelligence officers regard this practice as particularly effective. Disrupting the money flow: Authorities are targeting the flow of money smuggled into the PA areas from Iraq and Saudi Arabia, and the bank accounts where the money is held. Striking at clergy involved in incitement. Said one security source: "They see the suicide bombings as their way to getting their dream of a state. Only if we make clear to the families that there is no chance to achieve that through suicide bombings is there a chance to reduce the number of volunteers." Along with the desire for social standing for their families, the public climate in the territories, which legitimizes the attacks, encourages the bombers. Mass funerals for the bombers are often attended by senior PA officials, including mayors and district governors. The PA helps put up mourners' tents for homicide bombers from Fatah. Homicide bombing is considered a local source of pride and streets are named for bombers. "There is a sanctification of death in the territories," said one senior officer. "There are streets where the graffiti read 'Beware of death by natural causes.'

2002-07-17 00:00:00

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