In 2 months, Israelis have killed at least 64 Palestinians (one last night); Palestinians have killed 11 Israelis (2 yesterday).

On Sunday night gangs of Israeli settlers invaded the Palestinian town of Huwara and nearby villages, burning homes, destroying cars, and attacking residents. Several Palestinians were shot, one was stabbed, and another was beaten with an iron bar.

UPDATE: Another Israeli was killed today in the West Bank, while Israeli settlers protected by Israeli soldiers continue to attack Palestinians

by IAK team, February 27, 2023

Details are still emerging on this large-scale incident of Israeli settler violence. Reports diverge somewhat – but some parts of the picture are clear.

On Sunday night, hundreds of Israeli settlers (some sites report “dozens”) invaded the Palestinian town of Huwara and nearby villages, burning homes, destroying cars, and attacking residents. One Palestinian man was killed.

The rampage lasted for hours before Israeli military arrived, and has been called the worst settler violence in years.

The immediate cause of the attack was apparently the shooting deaths earlier Sunday of two Israeli settlers near Huwara, which was preceded by daily Israeli violence against Palestinians that included 11 Palestinians killed in an Israeli military raid in Nablus. The larger picture includes at least 64 Palestinian deaths and 11 Israeli deaths so far in 2023, and decades of Israeli oppression of Palestinians.

NBC reports:

Images from the streets of Hawara showed the destruction, with the charred gray skeletons of dozens of cars near to two-story buildings with their windows smashed.

One video shared widely on social media Sunday and geolocated by NBC News appeared to show a crowd of Israeli settlers praying while standing in front of a burning building.

Several Palestinians were shot, one was stabbed, and another was beaten with an iron bar. Reports say that somewhere between 100 and 350 others suffered from tear gas inhalation.

Sameh Aqtash. IMEMC reports that Aqtash was just recently working in Turkey earthquake rescue operations.
Sameh Aqtash. IMEMC reports that Aqtash was just recently working in Turkey earthquake rescue operations. (photo)






37-year-old Palestinian Sameh Hamdallah Mahmoud Aqtash, was shot and killed by Israeli fire, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. According to IMEMC, Aqtash had been in Turkey just two weeks ago, volunteering on an earthquake rescue team.

Most sources indicate that Israeli settlers shot and killed Aqtash; however, according to AFP, the Palestinian’s brother insists that the Israeli military did it.

A military spokesperson denies this.

One Huwara resident stated, “Whenever we started to push the settlers back, the army was firing tear gas at us.”

The Israeli military were in the midst of a manhunt for a Palestinian gunman who had killed two Israeli soldiers in the area earlier on Sunday, when the settler rampage began.

It is unclear why, with hundreds of military personnel nearby, none intervened to stop the attack for several hours.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, speaking of the slain Israelis, said, “May God avenge them. I ask even when the blood is boiling, not to take the law in one’s hands.”

Former Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz declared that the revenge attacks in Hawara “should shame every person and every Jew in particular…This is not our way.” [NOTE: Israeli settler violence is quite commonplace, often with Israeli military complicity or even assistance.]

NBC reports:

While some denounced the rampage, other members of the ruling coalition — seen as perhaps the most right-wing in Israel’s history —appeared to praise Sunday’s violence as a deterrence against Palestinian attacks.

“I look favorably on what happened in Hawara,” Tzvika Foghel, a lawmaker from the ultranationalist Jewish Power party, said in an interview with IDF radio. “The result is deterrence, the army should do it and not the civilians. I want to see every place where terrorists come out burning.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas holds the Israeli government accountable for “the terrorist acts carried out by settlers under the protection of the occupation forces.”

US State Department spokesman Ned Price commented that both the shooting of the Israelis and the settler rampage “underscore the imperative to immediately de-escalate tensions in words and deeds.” [NOTE: the State Department rarely criticizes Israel’s actions – see other recent State Department comments here and here.]

The Israeli military has announced that ten Israelis were arrested following the Hawara rampage.

Less than a week ago, Israeli soldiers killed eleven Palestinians, injured more than 100, and caused more than  250 Palestinians to suffer the effects of tear gas inhalation and other minor wounds.

See also:   When Huwara town ablaze was live-streamed

This is an ongoing story. Check back for possible updates.

For a complete list of Palestinians and Israelis killed since 2000, please visit Israel-Palestine Timeline  

NOTE: The entire West Bank has been under Israeli occupation since 1967; all its official entrances and exits are controlled by Israeli soldiers, making its Palestinian inhabitants virtual prisoners. Many are families that were ethnically cleansed from Israel during Israel’s founding war (see this and this and this). Israeli forces often invade them; one example is here.

Israel was established in 1947 through a war of ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population, both Muslims and Christians, and it continues to steal other people’s land for illegal colonies known as ‘settlements.’ While Palestinians most often use nonviolent resistance, a small number use armed resistance against the invaders.

Thanks to the pro-Israel lobby in the US, Congress disburses over $20 million per day of Americans’ tax money directly to and/or on behalf of Israel.



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  1. "Unpeopled, deserts and mounds of bareness of forlorn and untenanted cities. Palestine is desolate. One may ride 10 miles hereabouts and not see ten human beings."
    Quote, Mark Twain (150 years ago)

  2. This is disgusting. So called 'settlers' are in fact invaders under any other name. They do this in full support of the Israeli army. This is typical Jooo tactic. "Because you retaliated against our invasion, it's your fault and justifies us burning and looting your village". Until the Joos power is taken away from them, no one on earth is safe from them.

    • Philistines were subdued & conquered by the Hebrews under Saul & King David in the 10th century BC.
      Your proven that this is an ancient grudge.
      Since you have no problem fighting ancient grudges, how about giving back the territory of Iran that belonged to the ancient Aryan Race.

  3. I am Not Pro Israel, but there is something very nefarious going on here with these Arabs claiming to be Palestinians. Palestine people never existed. This area was a desolate Region of the Ottoman Empire until after WW1, when the boundaries were remapped.
    It was the Germans who developed this area from 1868-1920 & it was the Germans that had their Property & Livestock confiscated by the British in 1918 and deported most Germans to an interment camp in Cario Egypt in 1920.
    These Arabs would spend the next 100 years causing distress in an area they did Not develop, while the Germans that did develop it by Labor & Cost, cut their losses over 100 years ago!

    • Dear Jonathan, the Palestinians are the same group mentioned in the history books as the Philistines,who are people of Aegean origin who settled on the southern coast of Palestine in the 12th century bce, about the time of the arrival of the Israelites.


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