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Guardian: Israeli Security Services Colluding with Settlers in Stopping Aid Trucks

The Guardian published yesterday some of their research into the blocking of humanitarian aid trucks by Israeli vigilante groups—in particular, the role of Israel’s security forces, both military and police, in providing intelligence to the mobs as to location and timing of the trucks. While there’s no doubt that both military and police have stood by and allowed the vigilante groups to attack the trucks and destroy the food, the many been suspicions and anecdotal accounts that the vigilantes have been provided intel are not new.

The Guardian has reviewed “messages from internal internet chat groups” that support “the claim of collusion by members of the security forces…. In one such message seen by the Guardian, far-right activists alerted members that they would ‘receive preliminary information about the planning of moving trucks, from border crossings’ soldiers and police’. In another message in a settler WhatsApp group, a member wrote on Sunday: ‘I received information from an officer in the IDF that they bring the trucks in front of Ofra’,” an Israeli settlement in the West Bank.

Minimally, it indicates that individual members of the security forces, likely with an ideological bent, are providing the intel. A spokesperson for one of the more organized groups of vigilantes, Rachel Touitou of “Tzav 9,” told the Guardian: “When a policeman or soldier’s mission is supposed to protect Israelis and instead he is sent to protect humanitarian aid convoys—knowing it will end up in the hands of Hamas—we cannot blame them or civilians who notice the trucks passing by their towns for providing intel to groups trying to block that aid. Yes, some of our intel comes from individual members of Israeli forces.”

Neither the Israeli government nor the vigilantes, despite their obligatory claim, have provided any evidence that the aid ends up with Hamas. Even “US officials have also said that Israel has offered no evidence to support allegations that Hamas is diverting aid.” First, they never planned to back up such an assertion. But, while it would be highly unlikely if no Hamas members or sympathizers benefited from the aid, it is simply irrelevant. Israel, as the occupying force for the last 57 years, is legally obligated to deal with such humanitarian crises.

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