A disturbing report from the West Bank

I have written recently about Benjamin Netanyahu’s reasonable approach to Israel’s West Bank settlements — build no new ones, take down new “outpost” settlements built without the government’s permission, but allow construction consistent with the natural growth of existing settlements.

The compromise does not please President Obama, whose position apparently is, no new construction at all. It also does not please the settlers who have built the new “outposts.”

This is to be expected. By their nature, compromises typically leave parties at both ends of the spectrum unhappy.

But according to the Washington Post, some settlers have responded to Netanyahu’s position by retaliating against Palestinians. Specifically, the Post reports that stone-throwing settlers ambushed a mini-caravan carrying Palestinian laborers to Israel. Six of the 15 Palestinians on board were said to have been injured. Not yet satisifed, the settlers allegedly proceeded to set fire to a wooded hilltop near Nablus and set trees and agricultural land on fire near a Palestinian village.

Assuming the truth of these reports, I am not be able to distinguish the settlers’ actions from terrorism.

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