Israel kills 4 teens in rampage across West Bank

Mourners carry the body of 14-year-old Adel Ibrahim Adel Daoud during his funeral in Qalqiliya on 8 October. Shadi Jarar'ah (APA Images)

Tamara Nassar

The Electronic Intifada  /  October 9, 2022

A Palestinian resistance operation in occupied East Jerusalem killed an Israeli soldier and injured several others on Saturday evening.

The person who carried out the shooting at a military checkpoint near Shuafat refugee camp escaped without being captured by occupation forces.

This came after intense army raids in the West Bank during which Israeli forces killed four Palestinians in 24 hours, all teenagers, three of them children.

A video shared by local media shows a white car pulling up at the checkpoint and a man calmly exiting from the passenger seat. He walks towards a group of soldiers and security guards and shoots at them at point blank range.

He runs away as the car drives off. Another video shows the immediate aftermath of the shooting:

The driver of the car and two other passengers are in custody, according to Israeli authorities, who claim to know the identity of the gunman.

The dead soldier was identified as Noa Lazar. Israeli media reported that a “civilian” security guard who worked at the checkpoint was seriously wounded and that two officers from the paramilitary Border Police sustained less serious injuries.

The Israeli army sealed off and raided Shuafat refugee camp after the operation.

Troops fired tear gas in the camp and raided homes.

This video shows soldiers pointing their weapons as they invade a Palestinian home in the camp:

Refugee camp attack

Israel appears unable to comprehend that its unending violence against the Palestinian civilian population is precisely what generates resistance, and escalating its attacks and collective punishment has never brought “security” but only more resistance.

The attack at Shuafat followed a bloody series of Israeli raids that left Palestinians reeling, as more families buried children cut down by Israeli gunfire.

On Saturday morning, the Israeli military invaded Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank to detain Palestinians. This video shows a large Israeli military convoy entering Jenin on Saturday morning:

According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, Israeli forces “laid siege” to the house of Samir Saleh Abu Zeina and began to open fire on it – an indication that they were implementing the so-called pressure cooker procedure, a form of extrajudicial execution where a wanted person must either surrender or have the house they are in destroyed on top of them.

Israeli forces, supplemented by Apache combat helicopters and drones armed with missiles, succeeded in detaining the homeowner’s son Saleh, whom Israel accuses of “terrorist” activity.

During the siege, Palestinians gathered to resist the invasion with stones, according to PCHR. Israel claims its forces were also confronted with Molotov cocktails and live fire.

Israeli fire killed two people and injured 11 others, three seriously, according to the Palestinian Authority health ministry.

Those killed were Ahmad Muhammad Hussein Daraghmah (19) and Mahmoud Moayad Mahmoud Sous (17).

Sous, a resident of the camp, “allegedly threw a homemade explosive device toward an Israeli military vehicle deployed about 20 meters (65 feet) away during confrontations with Israeli forces, and then sustained two gunshot wounds to the neck and right thigh,” according to Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCIP).

Both bullets struck him from behind, according to a medical report cited by DCIP.

Daraghmah, who was from the nearby town of Tubas, was shot in the head.

Soldiers fire at a group of children

On Friday, Israeli occupation forces opened fire on a group of children and youth near Israel’s separation wall near the northern West Bank town of Qalqilya.

The young Palestinians were “in one of the groves, where they usually go from time to time, and which is around 100 meters away” from an Israeli army position, according to PCHR.

An Israeli bullet hit 14-year-old Adel Ibrahim Adel Daoud in the head, causing fatal injuries.

Photos shared by local news agencies showed the child’s young friends mourning at his funeral.

In another video, Daoud’s mother touchingly recalls her son’s last day and speaks of her distress when she heard he had been shot.

“I pray that God will accept him among the martyrs, the prophets and those who are pure,” she said as others sought to comfort her.

Also on Friday, Israeli settlers escorted by soldiers invaded the occupied West Bank village of al-Mazra al-Gharbiyeh, north of Ramallah, and repeatedly attacked Palestinians, according to a field investigation by DCIP.

Palestinian youth gathered to resist the soldiers and settlers by throwing stones, empty bottles and Molotov cocktails, according to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights.

Israeli forces fired live and rubber-coated steel bullets, stun grenades and teargas canisters at Palestinians.

Mahdi Muhammad Ladadwa (17) was shot in the pelvis, according to DCIP.

“An Israeli soldier opened fire from a distance of less than 20 meters at Ladadwa, who posed no threat or danger to the soldiers’ lives,” PCHR reported, citing an eyewitness.

Ladadwa, who was shot in the “left waist” according to PCHR, was taken to hospital in critical condition, but died later that evening.

Video and photos circulated by local media showed a large turnout for Ladadwa’s funeral procession.

“Israeli authorities not only persistently fail to investigate Israeli settler violence against Palestinians, including children, but they actively support settler attacks,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP.

“Systemic impunity combined with military protection from the state has undoubtedly led to Israeli settlers becoming more brazen in their attacks.”

In one widely shared video, Israeli soldiers are seen attacking, shoving and pointing their weapons at people, including medics, who were attempting to aid a young man lying on a stretcher bleeding from near his groin.

At least one gunshot can be heard in the brief video.

Some local media identified the youth on the stretcher as Ladadwa, although his face is not clearly visible.

However, another child, 16-year-old Nour Ali Shreiteh, was also shot and injured with a live bullet in his pelvis during the same incident, according to PCHR.

Israeli occupation forces “attempted to arrest him after being injured, but people managed to take him to the hospital,” PCHR reported. Israeli forces then “arrested one of those who prevented the arrest attempt.”

International silence and complicity

Throughout Friday and most of Saturday, representatives of the so-called international community remained silent about the escalating bloodshed as long as it was only Palestinians being killed and injured.

But after Israeli occupation forces came under attack at the Shuafat checkpoint on Saturday night, Tor Wennesland, the UN envoy for the Middle East “peace process,” issued a statement that he was “alarmed by the deteriorating security situation” and calling for “calm.”

In language crafted to avoid directly blaming the occupying power, Wennesland observed that “Since the beginning of the year, at least 100 Palestinians have been killed, including children, amid a significant increase in Israeli military operations in the occupied West Bank.”

Wennesland added that “During the same period, 16 Israelis have been killed inside Israel in a wave of terrorist attacks by Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.”

Notably, Wennesland characterizes Israel’s systematic killing of Palestinians in the West Bank as occurring “amid” what he describes as “military operations” – obscuring how Israel regularly attacks, collectively punishes and terrorizes civilians in the context of occupation, settler-colonization and the enforcement of a system of apartheid.

Meanwhile, he describes killings of Israelis by Palestinians, including of members of paramilitary forces, as “terrorist attacks.”

This aversion to holding Israel accountable also extended to UNICEF. The United Nations children’s agency noted in a tweet that “two Palestinian children, 14 and 17, were killed in the West Bank” on Friday, but omitted to mention that Israeli forces killed them.

At least 26 Palestinian children have been killed by Israeli occupation forces or settlers in the West Bank so far this year.

 Tamara Nassar is an assistant editor at The Electronic Intifada

Ali Abunimah contributed reporting