- Cullman, Alabama

National News

January 3, 2013

INTERNATIONAL: Israeli undercover raid sets off violent protests

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Israeli undercover troops broke into a West Bank apartment building in a failed arrest raid Thursday, igniting a violent protest and signaling that Israeli-Palestinian security coordination may be in trouble, officials said.

Thursday's raid targeted a suspected Islamic militant and marked the second time this week an army operation sparked clashes. Palestinians accused Israel of taking provocative actions in retaliation for their successful bid in November to win U.N. recognition of a state of Palestine in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem, the territories Israel captured in 1967.

Israel's military denied it was walking away from coordination with the security forces of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, whose self-rule government administers just over one-third of the West Bank, where more than 90 percent of the Palestinians live.

Palestinian officials said Thursday's operation began when undercover troops, followed by uniformed soldiers in more than a dozen jeeps, broke into an apartment building on the outskirts of the West Bank town of Jenin. The apparent target, an activist in the militant Islamic Jihad group, was not in the area.

The Israeli military said several hundred Palestinians began throwing stones, and that some in the crowd hurled firebombs and rolled burning tires toward the soldiers. Troops fired warning shots, and also used tear gas, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel pellets to quell the protest, the military said.

Talal Dweikat, the Palestinian governor of the Jenin district, put the number of stone throwers at several dozen. He said a Palestinian was shot in the leg and an elderly woman was bitten by an army dog. The military confirmed a woman was bitten and taken for medical treatment.

In recent years, the West Bank has been relatively calm, in part because of Israeli-Palestinian coordination in tracking Islamic militants. The coordination came in response to the 2007 takeover of Gaza by the Islamic militant Hamas, Abbas' main political rival.

Trying to prevent a similar takeover in the West Bank, Abbas began cracking down on Hamas and found his interests aligned with Israel's. Abbas has long argued that violence is counterproductive, since Palestinians are bound to lose any armed confrontation with Israel. Hamas believes Israel will make concessions only in response to force.

Security coordination with Israel is unpopular in the West Bank, especially at a time when peace talks are frozen and Palestinian independence appears unlikely anytime soon. U.N. recognition gave the Palestinians a diplomatic boost but changed little on the ground.

Palestinian officials alleged Thursday that the recent Israeli raids are part of Israel's retaliation for the statehood bid. Israel strongly opposed the U.N. recognition, saying it was an attempt to bypass negotiations.

A Palestinian security official said Abbas has ordered his security forces to avoid any confrontations with Israeli troops. Abbas is concerned about an unwanted escalation he believes will not serve Palestinian interests, said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss internal deliberations with reporters.

Adnan Damiri, a spokesman for the Palestinian security forces, said Israeli troops have increasingly entered Palestinian-run areas without coordination since November. "There has been an escalation in Israeli raids into our territories since the U.N. bid," he said.

Earlier this week, another undercover raid targeting suspected Islamic Jihad militants in the West Bank prompted clashes that left 10 Palestinians wounded.

Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich, an Israeli army spokeswoman, said Israel has not abandoned security coordination with the Palestinians. "As far as we are concerned, the coordination has not changed," she said. "Our activities are in relation to threats (by militants), and nothing else."


Text Only
National News
  • Fort Hood (UPDATED) Officials: 4 dead, including gunman, at Fort Hood

    A gunman opened fire Wednesday at Fort Hood in an attack that left four dead, including the shooter, law enforcement officials said.
    One of the officials, citing official internal U.S. Justice Department updates, said 14 others were hurt. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release information by name.

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • Smartphone kill switches are coming

    Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!

    April 18, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 17, 2014

  • mfp file Hoffner Fired coach unjustly accused of visiting porn sites

    The president of Minnesota State University-Mankato accused a football coach of looking at Internet porn on a work computer before firing him, an arbitrator has revealed. The official said the claim could not be supported, and the coach shouldn't have been fired.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • High School Stabbings 4 students seriously hurt in Pa. school stabbings

    A student armed with a knife went on a stabbing and slashing spree at a high school near Pittsburgh on Wednesday morning, leaving as many as 20 people injured, including four students who suffered serious wounds, authorities said.

    April 9, 2014 2 Photos

  • Obit Ultimate Warrior Former pro wrestler Ultimate Warrior dies at 54

    James Hellwig, better known as former pro wrestler The Ultimate Warrior, has died, the WWE said. He was 54.

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • news_amazonfiretv.jpg Amazon introduces Fire TV to challenge Apple in living rooms Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos is stepping up efforts to win over customers in their living rooms with a $99 TV box for watching digitally delivered shows and movies, challenging Apple's TV device.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • Washington Mudslide Death toll in Washington mudslide rises to 30

    As medical examiners painstakingly piece together the identities and lives of the 30 people known killed when a mudslide wiped out a small Washington community, one mystery troubles them.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • APTOPIX Fort Hood Fort Hood gunman sought mental health treatment

    An Iraq War veteran being treated for mental illness was the gunman who opened fire at Fort Hood, killing three people and wounding 16 others before committing suicide, in an attack on the same Texas military base where more than a dozen people were slain in 2009, authorities said.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • Supreme Court Campaign Big donors may give even more under court’s ruling

    The Supreme Court ruling Wednesday erasing a long-standing limit on campaign donations will allow a small number of very wealthy donors to give even more than is currently the case, according to students of the complex campaign finance system, and could strengthen the establishment in both parties.

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo