Israel’s defense minister wants Israel to demolish the homes of terrorists who severely injured civilians and not only the homes of those who committed murder. According to Lieberman, “this is an effective and proven tool to eradicate terror.” The committee charged with examining the issue of home demolitions, however, argues that with few exceptions, the disadvantages of the policy actually outweigh the advantages.
IDF soldiers prepare for the demolition of a terrorist’s home Photo credit: IDF Spokesperson/ Channel 2 News
Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman announced today (Sunday) that he has instructed the Defense Ministry to explore the option of expanding Israel’s policy of demolishing terrorists’ homes. According to Lieberman, the policy should include the homes of terrorists who severely injured Israeli civilians and not only the homes of those who committed murder.
Lieberman’s new directive is currently being examined by the legal adviser of the defense establishment and the IDF. “There is no difference between a terrorist attack that ended in murder and an attack that ended in serious injury,” Lieberman said. “In both cases, the houses of the terrorists must be destroyed.”
“The fight against terror demands that we be steadfast and act in a variety of ways and with a firm hand against those who try to harm us- the perpetrators and their handlers,” Lieberman added. “As part of this uncompromising struggle, I believe that the homes of terrorists who carried out attacks that caused serious injury to civilians should also be demolished.”
Contrary to Lieberman’s claim, a committee appointed by former Defense Minister Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon to examine the policy of house demolitions in the West Bank actually recommended that the demolitions be stopped. The committee, headed by Maj. Gen. Udi Shani, came to the conclusion that the policy was not fulfilling its goal- to deter terrorists from carrying out attacks over fear for their family’s home. The committee determined that, with few exceptions, the deterrence policy is ineffective and does not justify the subsequent hatred that it provokes among the Palestinians.