Some settlers push back, pt. 3: Palestinians attacked near Jewish militant redoubt

Right-wing settlers from the West Bank have been holed up in the Maoz Hayam hotel in the illegal Jewish colony of Gush Katif in the occupied Gaza Strip. Some 30 families have moved in the past few weeks to fortify resistance to the expected pullout of Jewish settlements. Among them are key Kach militants. Some Jewish militants residing in the hotel went on a rampage Saturday night, June 18, beating and wounding four Palestinians, residents said, in the neaby Muassi area, near the beach. One of the victims was shot. The settlers tried to claim the Palestinians made them attack them, in self-defense, but one unnamed IDF officer was skeptical:

“It is clear that the hotel occupants were the provocateurs here. This is what they do at their homes in Judea and Samaria [settler argot for the West Bank] … They feel their Sabbath is incomplete if they have not attacked Palestinians.(Ynet, Jan. 18; Haaretz, June 21)

See also: Some settlers push back, pt.2 and pt. 1

  1. Some settlers to be pushed back?
    last update – 00:36 24/06/2005

    Security forces preparing to raid Gush Katif hotel

    By Amos Harel and Nadav Shragai, Haaretz Correspondent

    The security establishment has decided to raid the Maoz Yam Hotel in the Gaza Strip settlement of Neveh Dekalim soon, rather than wait until the disengagement plan is under way.

    Leaders of the approximately 30 families and singles who have moved to the hotel to express their opposition to the pullout said Thursday they have begun preparing for an anticipated nighttime raid, after having been informed that several police units met to discuss the raid on Thursday. Due to rumors of an impending raid, dozens of settlers arrived at the hotel last night to bolster the presence of those already living there.

    But police appeared Thursday night to have temporarily frozen any immediate plans for the raid after the information was leaked to settlers and to the press. Security sources said police and the Israel Defense Forces will wait for a suitable opportunity to carry out the raid in the near future.


    Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz have met with Defense and Justice Ministry officials in the last few weeks to discuss how to deal with the residents of the hotel, which has come to be considered an extremist outpost.

    At first, many officials advised against raiding the hotel at this stage, preferring to leave it alone until all the other Gaza settlements have been evacuated. They argued that it was better for most of the extremists to congregate at one venue, thereby making it harder for them to provoke radical activity in other areas.

    But developments in the past week have changed that analysis. Several hotel residents assaulted and opened fire on a group of Palestinians from the neighboring Muasi area, wounding four of them, on Saturday. The security establishment also has learned that the hotel residents are collecting weapons there, with most of the men armed, and have come up with several plans to oppose the disengagement.

    The official reason for raiding the hotel before the disengagement is that several of the residents suspected of Saturday’s attack are wanted for questioning.

    The residents’ opposition to the raid is expected to lead to a number of arrests and closure of the site.

    Many people who live in the Gush Katif settlement bloc have reservations about the hotel, saying its residents are making all settlers appear radical and violent.