On October 26, Bazar family members saw branches torn off 10 of their olive trees. Later an Al Jazeera jeep arriving to document the damage was stoned. A B'Tselem volunteer with them was injured when a stone struck him in the neck.
Last year, B'Tselem documented six settler vandalism incidents. They happen regularly. Many aren't reported. Affected Palestinians may fear for their lives. Other times complaints lodged fall on deaf ears.
In 2010, B'Tselem discussed several incidents near Talmon, Dolev and Hanli'el settlements. They included assaults, threats, damage to trees, and crop theft. Farmers complained to police.
Four cases were closed, three on grounds of "offender unknown." It's polite language for whitewash. Another ended for reasons unknown, and a fifth one remains unresolved.
In 2006, Israel's High Court ruled that "protection of the safety and property of the local residents is one of the most fundamental obligations imposed on the military commander in the field."
The Court ordered four principles maintained:
- assuring Palestinian farmers are safe during olive harvest;
- that they have free access to their land;
- that security forces protect their property; and
- thoroughly investigate complaints filed.
Israeli government and military officials routinely ignore Supreme Court rulings, doing what they wish extralegally.