The guards of the Settlers Just Shoot

This morning it happened. The Palestinians were warning, ACRI published a detailed report on that threat and even Israeli media it was reported. But for the family of Samer Sarhan it will never help. Sarhan, 32 years old, the father of 5 little children and a beloved community leader at the Bustan neighborhood in Silwan, was shot dead by a guard of the settlers near the “City of David” settlement.
When I got there this morning the police has already closed the scene, and prevented people from passing, including the children on their way to school.


I stood with a group of residents that were waiting to hear and see what was happening.

The settlers’ guard, which is funded by the government of Israel, passed earlier this morning in the street with his jeep. Like in many cases, there was some kind of friction between him and Palestinian residents. Sometimes it is due to some settler provocation, and sometimes it’s the Palestinians, in any case this could vary from mutual yellings, cursings, to even hittings or stone throwing. I don’t know what it was this time. The guard claims he was attacked, the neighbors claim it was a provocation of the guard. One thing is clear: the guard was armed, he used his gun (about 10 times) and Sarhan was killed.
We saw the guard reconstructing the crime scene in front of the police camera (I heard that there was an order prohibiting the publication of his name, so I put a picture of the police preparing for the reconstruction).


Unfortunately we will never be able to hear the victim’s version of what had happened. When the word came that Sarhan had died, some young Palestinians gathered and threw their anger and frustration at the policemen in stones. The police reacted with tear gas and sound bombs.
Usually, the police has the means to deal with stoning, without shooting live ammunition. But those private guards, just shoot. It is a kind of an armed militia that the settlers hold, funded by the Israeli tax payers (ironically these include the Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem themselves, and also myself…). They are operating independently, with no direct supervision of the police.
I am sure that the head of the Jerusalem police, who visited the site in the morning, is very much concerned about the possible developments and reactions that this killing might lead to. I am also concerned. My city, Jerusalem, might be facing some bad days of riots, tear gas, arrests and violence. The police and the government of Israel is actually allowing the settlers in East Jerusalem to use force that might be deadly not only for people like Sarhan, but also to all of us.

I went to look for some more details about what happened. I got to the stairs where Sarhan collapsed, after running away, wounded, from the guard who apparently came after him.

A young woman was sitting looking at the blood of Sarhan that remained on the floor, and cried quietly. I thought to myself, how easily one can take somebody’s life. This guard will probably go home after giving his testimony. The file against him will be closed with no charge, just like other similar cases, and everything will go back to “normal”.
The Problem is, that the “normal” of Silwan, where there are some 300 settlers, secured by an armed militia is way far from being normal.

See also a full analysis by my colleagues, Lara Friedman and Danny Seideman.

8 Responses to The guards of the Settlers Just Shoot

  1. hemlig says:

    This report is not objective at all. You insinuate that the palestinian did absolutely nothing to provoke this guard and that he’s not responsible for putting himself in the situation that finally ended his own life.

    I’m having a very very hard time to believe you and trust that your report is accurate since you put your own view, your own thoughts on what you THINK happened, and what you THINK will happen next.

    People like you are very dangerous to the truth, and to the peace that everyone is longing for. You should be ashamed of yourself and your lame excuse for “eye witness report”.

    • I’m happy that you noticed that i sometime write about what i think, and sometimes about facts. That’s what this blog is about.
      However you didn’t understand what i wrote about the circumstances of the killing of Sarhan. I wrote that i don’t know who is right and what exactly happen. In the past I saw with my own eyes Palestinians attacking guards and police, and i also saw guards harassing Palestinians. I don’t know what happened this time.
      However, even if i accept the guard’s version – the deadly outcome is not acceptable. If it was the police – they must have used other, less deadly means. The price of having the settlers there, and the price of protecting them through an armed civil guards is too high.

  2. Henry Federman says:

    How do you have the audacity to call “east jerusalem” occupied territory.It is ONE city occupied in 1948 by Jordan and divided by Jordan into west and east. Pure arab propaganda and you fell for it. What happened to the 850000 jews expelled by tne arab countries. Don’t they count for anything? Who paid for their loss. The arab countries don’t even pay for their own “refugees”.

    • I invite you to visit my city Jerusalem. Most of the Jews in Jerusalem never visited the East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhoods, we have nothing to look for there; The ministry of education does not allow tours of the children in East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhoods; there is no bus line connecting between West and East Jerusalem neighborhoods. The city is de-facto divided, even if we call it “united”.

  3. […] The guards of the Settlers Just Shoot von → Apartheid, Demonstration, Gelogen, Menschenunwürdig, Mörderisches, Palestine, Politisch, Trauriges, Unmenschlich, Verblödet, Zwischenmenschliches ← Unterschiede in der Schule … Noch keine Kommentare Hier klicken, um die Antwort abzubrechen. […]

  4. […] Hagit Ofran, an activist with Israel’s Peace Now movement who tracks settlements, posted photographs of Israeli police staging a reconstruction of the shooting and of what she said was the bloody […]

  5. LaughingAllTheWayToTheWestBank says:

    “Most of the Jews in Jerusalem never visited the East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhoods, we have nothing to look for there”

    Not accurate. The majority of East Jerusalem is Jewish. The left-wing Mohammedan neighborhoods – like left-wing Islamonazi neighborhoods everywhere – are full of rape, violence, wickedness and Islam. So humans try to avoid such left-wing Islamonazi shitholes as much as possible. But that CAN’T be the standard – that where left-wing Muslonazis act in accordance with left-wing Muhammedan teachings, Jews may not go.

    Instead we should be forcing the left-wing Mohammed-worshippers to act like humans. One way to start is to make attempted murder by a left-wing Muslonazi punishable with a 30 year jail term as it is in the United States. Throwing a stone at a schoolbus in order to kill the children is attempted murder.

    “The ministry of education does not allow tours of the children in East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhoods”

    Another lie. True about Islamonazi neighborhoods – but again, this is because of left-wing Islamonazi behavior. Those areas where Islamonazis are not present there is no concern about violence.

    “there is no bus line connecting between West and East Jerusalem neighborhoods. The city is de-facto divided, even if we call it “united”.”

    What are you talking about? There are dozens of lines that connect the “East” and “West”. There’s a light rail being opened between them. Very few humans want to go to Islamonazi neighborhoods – but that’s true everywhere. Most of East Jerusalem is non-Islamonazi.

    The solution is to the exterminate Islamonazism and dismantle their slums; execute those who advocate for genocide and seek reparations from the left-wing organizations that funded their genocide.

    ~~~ Let’s be clear. Under international law, the calls for genocide that are endemic to the Quran are a war crime. Every observant Mohammed-worshipper is a war criminal under International law. As particularly applied to Jerusalem, it is the position of the left-wing Mohammedans that Jews may not live in Silwan. To advocate for such a genocide is not just a war crime, but complicity in genocidal and punishable – in many cases, like Nuremburg and Rwanda – by death.

    When there is a Truth and Reconciliation Committee to address the crimes of Islam, and every observant Muslim in Jerusalem ought to be tried, and – when found guilty – put to death.

    I pray that the Security forces – acting under international law – continue to kill the aggressor Mohammedans, punish the leftists enablers, and stop the genocide against Jews that is occurring in historically Jewish East Jerusalem.

  6. […] will be marching through areas of controversy, even as this year’s march followed by only days the killing of a Palestinian resident by a private guard of the settlers in Silwan, which led to an outbreak of violence in East Jerusalem. In fact, the […]

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