1. Statements made recently by prominent figures in the popular committees against the fence and settlements reflect the organization’s intention for a new wave of defiant anti-Israeli activities. They are as part of the so-called popular resistance, which have recently become routine and are not extensively reported by the international media. To that end they will exploit the anniversary of the anti-Israel legal opinion on the fence handed down by the International Court of Justice in The Hague on July 9, 2004. They are planning, they said, to use “creative ways” to initiate direct confrontations with the Israeli security forces.
2. The main points of the statements were the following:
1) Salah al-Khawaja, senior activist in the popular committees and a prominent popular resistance activist in Judea and Samaria, was recently interviewed by the official Palestinian Authority (PA) radio station. He said that eight years had passed since the advisory opinion was handed down in The Hague, but apparently international organizations had done nothing to implement it and force Israel to stop its “daily aggression against the holy places and Palestinian territories.” He said that for several weeks activists had been working to organize new activities for the “side roads, dirt roads, roadblocks, established settlements and settlements under construction.” He said the objective of the activities was to initiate direct confrontations with the socalled “forces of occupation” [i.e. the Israeli security forces] as a way to escalate the popular resistance in creative ways (Voice of Palestine, July 3, 2013).
2) Abdallah Abu Rahma, prominent popular committees activist and a leading popular resistance activist in Judea and Samaria spoke about a campaign called “Country, be strong,”2 which would be joined by all the popular committees in coordination with the youth movements. The objective of the campaign, he said, was “to resist the occupation in every way.” He said at the center of their activity was the Jewish settlement of Beit El, because it was a symbol of the settlements and because, he claimed, it was where decisions regarding land expropriation were made. As to the nature of the activities, he said that in the near future there would be various “special, surprising” activities throughout Judea and Samaria near the settlements, the roadblocks and the fence. He said that in view of events in Egypt and the Arab world in general, the Palestinians had to be united and carry out “a daring intifada against the occupation” (Paltoday website, July 3, 2013).
3. In our assessment such remarks reflect the feeling among popular committees activists that the weekly demonstrations and riots against the security fence have become routine and do not attract attention in Judea and Samaria or beyond its borders (and cannot compete with the dramatic events unfolding in Egypt).
Therefore, they feel a need to blow new life into the popular resistance, and to that end want to exploit the anti-Israeli advisory opinion handed down by the International Court of Justice in The Hague. They may want to exploit such a “success” to attack Israel n the international arena, as part of the delegitimization campaign currently being waged against Israel.
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