The commander of Army forces in the West Bank, Brig. Gen. Nitzan Alon,
has relayed an order to identify soldiers and officers suspected of opposing
the government campaign to demolish scores of Jewish communities. In his
written order, Alon said these soldiers could "harm state security."
Earlier this year, the military, under new Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz,
began participating in raids and the demolition of Jewish outposts in the
West Bank. The sources said Gantz's predecessor, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi,
refused to involve the Army in such operations out of concern that this
would divide the military.
The sources said the Army was coordinating with the police and the
paramilitary Border Guards for major operations against the more than 100
West Bank Jewish communities deemed illegal. They said scores of
Jewish homes built without licenses could be destroyed over the next two
The military planning has been accompanied by a crackdown on Jewish
dissent in the West Bank. Police have raided West Bank communities and
arrested rabbis and journalists deemed opponents of the government policy.
On June 12, police stormed the Jewish community of Yitzhar and arrested
three members of the news Web site Jewish Voice. The Web site was the first to
publish Alon's orders to identify soldiers and officers who might oppose
"A number of items and computers were seized during the raid as part of
the investigation," a police spokeswoman said.