As the world’s attention is drawn to the conflict in Gaza, the Israeli military is escalating its attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank. The military has isolated Palestinian communities, restricting their movement, while Israeli settlers are free to traverse rural areas, often attacking Palestinians they encounter. The military has also increased its raids across the West Bank, with reports of severe cruelty and torture emerging. Over the past three weeks, more than 165 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank, with at least 2,200 arrested.
This campaign is not only a retaliation against Palestinians but also an opportunity for Israel to expedite its colonization efforts in the West Bank. Palestinians understand that the West Bank and Gaza Strip, despite being geographically separate, are part of the same narrative – different battlegrounds in the Zionist war to colonize all of Palestine.
The Role of Israeli Settlers
Israeli settlers, with the support of the Israeli government and military, have been attacking Palestinian communities, issuing threats and ultimatums, and forcing residents to leave their homes. Since October 7, 828 Palestinians, including 313 children, have been expelled from over 13 communities in Area C.
The Israeli government has been arming settlers with military-grade weapons, effectively giving them free rein to seize as much land as they can. The settlers’ actions are not independent; they are supported and protected by the Israeli government and military, blurring the line between settler violence and state violence.
Palestinian Refugee Camps
Since the start of 2023, over 270 Palestinians have been killed, most of them refugees from the Nakba. The Israeli military has focused its raids on refugee camps, which have long been centers of resistance. On October 22, the Israeli air force bombed the West Bank for the first time since the Second Intifada, destroying a mosque in the Jenin refugee camp.
The Palestinian Authority, lacking legitimacy in the eyes of most Palestinians, is unable to advocate for its people and is using its resources to suppress critics and youth trying to defend their communities. The ongoing expulsions in the West Bank reveal the true nature of Israel’s colonial ambitions. The world’s silence on these atrocities has only emboldened Israel, making the endgame of Zionism clearer than ever.
Read more at The Nation.