Photo Credit: Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz
President Joe Biden, May 9, 2023.

According to an Axios exclusive report citing three US officials, the Biden administration is expected to impose new sanctions as soon as Thursday on two Jewish outposts in Judea and Samaria from which settlers went out to attack PA Arabs.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which relies on patently unverified reports from the PA, from Judea and Samaria Arabs, and left-wing activists, “Since October 7, 2023, and as of January 31, 2024, 370 Palestinians have been killed” in eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.


According to OCHA (Hostilities in the Gaza Strip and Israel | Flash Update #107), these include “two Palestinians from the West Bank were killed while carrying out an attack in Israel on November 30.”

Axios’ Barak Ravid misrepresents the facts, reporting that “There were nearly 500 Israeli settler attacks against Palestinians between Oct. 7 and Jan. 31 of this year according to the UN humanitarian office (OCHA).” As I noted above, the actual number in the report is 370, which is nearly 500 the same way it is nearly 250.

The OCHA report specifies: “Of these 370 fatalities, 360 were killed by Israeli forces, eight by Israeli settlers, and two by either Israeli forces or settlers. Another Palestinian man was killed by Palestinians on January 7, 2024, reportedly in the belief that he was a settler.”

Also, according to OCHA, “Since October 7, 2023, and as of January 31, 2024, six Israelis, including four members of Israeli forces, have been killed in Palestinian-perpetrated attacks in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. The number of Israelis killed in the West Bank and Israel in 2023 in attacks perpetrated by Palestinians from the West Bank, 36, was the highest since OCHA started recording casualties in 2005.”

To sum up: even OCHA reports that many more Israelis by far have been killed by PA Arabs from October 7 to January 31 – 36 – than Arabs were by settlers – 8. But nowhere in the Axios report is there a mention of an administration plan to impose sanctions on any PA Arab.

Ravid cites a US official who says the sanctions imposed on the two outposts aim to convey that the US is not only focusing on individuals but also on organizations providing logistical and financial backing for attacks against PA Arab civilians. These sanctions entail freezing any assets held in the US by three settlers and two outposts, prohibiting their entry into the US, and preventing their use of the US financial system.

OK, when was the last time a Jewish outpost in Judea and Samaria flew to JFK?

In a call with President Biden last month, Prime Minister Netanyahu protested the fact that the administration was ignoring police reports of a marked decrease in “settler violence” in Judea and Samaria. Former foreign minister Eli Cohen in January called the reports of a supposed growing “settler violence” a “blood libel” and “a lie disconnected from reality.”

Biden, according to Axios, refused to be confused by the facts and told Netanyahu that sanctions on Jews in Judea and Samaria would continue.

On Wednesday, the commander of the Central Unit of the Israel Police’s Judea and Samaria District Avishai Mualem told a subcommittee of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee regarding the “settler violence” that “Most of the complaints are deliberate complaints from radical left-wing organizations which are located in Tel Aviv.”

Mualem characterized the proliferation of false complaints as a prevalent phenomenon that disrupts military operations and tarnishes Israel’s image. He pointed to the sanctions imposed by several countries on settlers in February as evidence.

Mualem stated that out of 191 complaints of settler violence in the South Hebron Hills since October 7, 90 were determined to be false. Similarly, in the Jordan Valley, half of the 70 complaints filed during this period were found to be false. 

Mualem cited the data on “Jewish nationalist crime” in Judea and Samaria, noting that during the war in Gaza, there have been 270 such incidents, compared to 537 last year.


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