Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Wednesday, May 22, 2002

The Christian Science Monitor has a look at who the Palestinian 'collaborators' are and how they are recruited.

"[Successful recruitment] is about confidence building," Kuperburg says. "The collaborator must understand why they are working with us. We are professional and they collaborate because we tell them the truth. If I want an 18-year-old to collaborate, he must believe we have common understanding. I will tell him that I also want to prevent bloodshed. With time, he will see that I am honest." "Someone who is a good student, a moderate, we will leave him alone," he says. "But if he is radical, we can tell him he is living in a dream. Sometimes even if he does not become a collaborator the conversation can prevent a future attack."

Other methods are a little more coercive:

Saleh Abdul Jawwad, head of the political science department at Bir Zeit University near Ramallah, believes collaborator recruitment was one aim of Israel's recent offensive in the West Bank. Hundreds of Palestinian men were rounded up. The declared goal was to root out the militants among them, but Mr. Jawwad says during interrogation many were offered opportunities to collaborate.

This is important. We always see images of these people shot and dragged through the streets to be spit on by children and women but we never hear about who they are or what makes the murderers so sure these people are collaborators.

But the problem is not limited to sham trials. During the first intifada, which began in 1987, about 1,000 Palestinians died in fighting with Israeli soldiers and settlers. Research by PHRMG (Palestinian Centre for Human Rights in Gaza) suggests a similar number were killed by their own people under suspicion of collaboration but just 45 percent of those killed were rightfully accused.

< email | 5/22/2002 06:11:00 PM | link

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