This week, Israel's state prosecutor's office announced that it is considering a plan that would declare "negligent" parents of minor children who are repeatedly arrested for taking part in protests against the government's withdrawal and expulsion plan from Gaza and northern Samaria.
In so declaring the parents, the state would pave the way for the forcible removal of these children from their homes and their transfer to state custody. That is, the Israeli government's newest way to fight opposition protests against its plan to forcibly remove 10,000 law-abiding Israeli citizens from their homes, farms and communities this summer is to threaten parents with the forcible removal of their children from their custody if their children don't agree to stop protesting against the forcible removal plan.
This child confiscation proposal, which was defended on Wednesday by Deputy Attorney-General Shai Nitzan, is more than simply controversial. It is totalitarian. It is not simply hard-hearted. It is inhuman. And in announcing it, the government showed that in light of the precipitous drop in public support for its plan, it has lost its connection to the principles of democracy, morality and simple human decency which are the outstanding characteristics of the Israeli public.
While the public was still reeling from the state prosecution's intention to declare war on the sanctity of the family as a means to fight 14-year-old girls who prefer to stay in jail rather than agree to surrender their right to protest the policies of their government, the government launched yet another offensive against its enemies.
The newest move, reported Thursday in Ma'ariv, is its decision to threaten citizens set for expulsion that if they don't leave their homes and farms voluntarily by August 15, the government will fine them each $40,000. This announcement came in the wake of Housing Minister Isaac Herzog's statement to The Jerusalem Post Wednesday that residents who don't cut a deal with the government for resettlement ahead of their planned eviction will simply be loaded onto buses and thrown out of their homes. Where they go after that is their problem, he explained.
The government is in trouble. With each passing day the fact that the plan to which it owes its existence ? the forcible removal of 10,000 citizens from their homes and communities and the transfer of their land to the Palestinians who have been attacking them continuously for the past five years ? is seen by more and more Israelis as irrational and dangerous.
Caroline B. Glick is the senior Middle East fellow at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C., and the deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post, where this article first appeared.
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