About “A Time of Zealots” (Editorial, Dec. 16): We always speak about Israel being a democracy and the rule of law being supreme. Illegal outposts, homes built without proper documentation must be removed — as Israel is a country of laws. But is this oft-repeated mantra really true? There is ample evidence to suggest otherwise. Let’s start with the illegal mosque being built on the Mount of Olives. A mosque is being built there without government permits and located just a stone’s throw from the special burial ground of a former prime minister of Israel. Have we heard any government minister or Supreme Court edict halting this construction, which has continued now for several months? Or the literally thousands of cases of illegal Arab construction projects going on right now in and around Jerusalem as well as in the rest of the “occupied” territories. Have we heard a peep from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about demolishing these structures? Not a word.
We heard a lot this past week about crazy settlers throwing stones at the Israel Defense Forces and that the prime minister convened a special Knesset session to deal with these lawbreakers. For the record, throwing rocks at the IDF is just plain wrong and this message cannot be understated. But while almost everyone is joining this witch hunt, it is so hypocritical that no one raised their voices when this very same rock-throwing phenomenon was done by non-settlers. It is well known that for years leftist demonstrators would gather near the Arab village of Bilin and throw rocks at the IDF. Innocuous? Hardly. According to several reports, over 130 soldiers have been injured in these attacks. One soldier lost his eye; others have had other serious injuries. Have we heard this played up in the media? Was there any emergency cabinet meeting?
Let’s be honest for once: there really does exist a double standard in Israel. There is selective enforcement of the law depending on who needs the enforcing — as defined by the government and the media. When it comes to the settlers, we convene the grand jury; when it comes to the Arabs or leftist demonstrators there is a completely different approach.