Thursday, November 09, 2006

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Storm Troopers

Storm troopers. Powerful words. For those not raised exclusively in the Star Wars era, the words were used to describe Nazi SS troops (may their name be blotted out). To be described with the same words today is offensive. It's meant to be.

During the Yitzchok Rabin administrator in Israel, the Oslo Accord process was started, giving away parts of Israel. Not elected on that platform, no matter. In Israel, with a non-representative pseudo-democracy, the citizens have no one to whom to protest nor any practical way of influencing the government. Only 1 form of protest was effective, trade union strike. But the party in power controlled the trade unions.

So an American immigrant decided to change the equation. American style civil disobedience. Sit-down protests in major intersections stunned the nation and, more importantly, the government. They were prepared to be arrested and refused to play by the unwritten rules (where once arrested you "agree" not to recommit, and the police let you go). Unable to deal with it, the government upgraded arrest charges to TREASON.

When Ariel Sharon came to power and decided on a radical path directly counter to his election mandate, he remembered the civil obedience movement. He would not let a minor thing like public opinion or protest affect his plans.

So he ordered the preparation of a new security unit. Yassam. Young men, non-religious, preferably non-Jewish, trained to deal with protest. Their methods? Not arrest, not crowd control, not tear gas or water cannon. No. They trained exclusively with riot gear and just-barely non-lethal violence techniques. Metal batons, armored fists, causing broken bones and head serious head wounds. Stun grenades and huge oversized riot control horses for charging crowds.

Black armor, grey uniforms, black shielded helmets, black armored gloves, black jack boots. No id, no badge, crew cuts. No females, no yalmuka's, no handcuffs (no arrests). Beatings, rage, trampling, that's their training. Religious may not apply, Zionists are forbidden.

They exist to break the will (and bones) of protestors.

They are the Yassamnikim, the Israeli government's private storm troopers.

They were deployed in Gaza, but only at the 'severe' protesting points. They were deployed in Chevron to clear the Jewish owned market, the shuk. And they were deployed in Amona in all their gory (sic), trampling, beating, breaking. They physically threw a friend's 15 year son out a second story window (they were sitting waiting to be annoying by being dragged away). He survived, no bones broken, but they broke his spirit, today he's thrown away his kippah and his observance.

They exist to break bones and break spirit.

Their name is well earned. Storm troopers.

This week, they are deployed to the ultra-religious neighborhoods of Meah Shearim and Geulah in Jerusalem. Tonight reports are they are literally storming yeshiva's and beating the SITTING student population. Report here.

Storm troopers.

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