Video: As soldiers guard them, Israeli settlers attack Palestinian village, shooting one

Video taken by Palestinians and posted on YouTube by the Israeli group B’Tselem shows Israeli settlers attacking Palestinians with stones, live fire and setting fire to fields as Israeli occupation forces guard the settlers.

One Palestinian, Fathi al-Asayreh, 24, was shot in the head in the settler attack.

The settler assault occured on 19 May in the village of Asira al-Qibliya near Nablus in the occupied West Bank and the settlers came from Yitzhar, an Israeli colony built to the east of the village on land stolen from the villagers in 1983.

Masked, hooded settlers attack village

A Hebrew-language text from B’Tselem accompanying the three video clips says that the Yitzhar settlers, some masked and hooded, approached the village from the settlement and began hurling rocks and setting fires. One of the settlers, video shows, appears to be carrying an army-issue “Tavor” assault rifle, suggesting, according to B’Tselem, that he was a soldier on leave from the Israeli occupation forces.

Soldiers protect settlers as settlers attack

Young men from the village began throwing stones back at the settlers. Within a short time, Israeli occupation soldiers showed up at the scene, but instead of doing anything to halt the settler assault, the soldiers formed a line to protect the settlers who continued firing at Palestinians.

Settlers can be seen aiming and firing weapons at Palestinians, including a handgun and M16 rifles.

Gunfire from the settlers injured villager Fathi al-Asayreh in the head. He is in stable condition at Rafidiyeh Hospital in Nablus, according to B’Tselem. About five other Palestinains were injured by rocks, B’Tselem said.

The attack on Asira al-Qibliya comes amid a sharp increase in settler attacks on Palestinians which are almost never investigated or punished.

A recent EU report, citing UN figures, found that in 2011 there were 411 settler attacks resulting in Palestinian casualties and property damage compared to 266 attacks in 2010, an increase of more than 50%. Compared to 132 attacks in 2009, the number has more than tripled.

In 2011, UN OCHA recorded 70 attacks by Yizhar settlers, “the largest figure recorded from a single settlement” that year.

B’Tselem said it asked the occupation authorities to investigate the incident, however such a request appears to stand little chance of being taken seriously.

The EU report noted that, “92% of the 600 cases related to settler violence monitored by Israeli NGO Yesh Din between 2005 and April 2010 were closed by Israeli authorities without resolution.”

Video: Yitzhar settlers fire at villagers in Asira al-Qibliya

Video shows settlers firing at Palestinians in the village of Asira al-Qibliya. One young man, wearing a green t-shirt is seen being carried away after being shot by the settlers.

Video: Soldiers guard the settlers as they attack the village

In this video, taken from a different angle, a settler can be seen crouching and aiming a handgun at Palestinians, as a line of soldiers protects the settlers. There is the sound of gunfire.

The same young man seen shot in the first video can be seen more clearly as he is carried away with blood pouring from the side of his head.

Video: the beginning of the incident

Video from the start of the incident shows settlers approaching the village from the direction of Yitzhar.




All of a sudden I am dumfounded even though I have seen other videos before.
I would like to stay in touch and follow actions taken by both sides.


You are only dumbfounded because you get your information from the mass media which manipulates and deceives the public. Watch America's media in this cowardly process online for free: google "Peace, Propaganda, and the Promise Land" it's an excellent exposé.


An unprovoked attack upon a Palestinian village by armed settlers who not content with the land they have already stolen try to terrorise Palestinian citizens and what do the "brave" IDF soldiers do? Stand there and make no attempt to intervene and stop the terrorist settlers from attacking unarmed civilians - cowards! A young Palestinian man is shot in the head by a terrorist settler and nothing is done. The Israeli government is must be held to account by the international community for its crimes against humanity.


Are you sure these are Israeli soldiers under army command? There are too few of them, around three or four. Does this constitute an Israeli army unit? Isn't it more likely that they are settlers who happen to be in military service, with access to a uniform, but here operating as off-duty volunteers for fellow settlers? They seem to be younger than the seasoned settlers, all of whom have clearly had army training (but then again, who hasn't in Israel?). See how nonchalantly they carry those assault rifles... And so confident that they don't bother wearing body armour.
This could be a sign of a severe breakdown in IDF discipline. People in military service who no longer know when they are on, or off duty. And army-trained settlers who carry their training over from army to civilian life.
Bad news for Palestinians, but worse news, maybe, for Israel in the long term.

Ali Abunimah

Ali Abunimah's picture

Co-founder of The Electronic Intifada and author of The Battle for Justice in Palestine, now out from Haymarket Books.

Also wrote One Country: A Bold-Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse. Opinions are mine alone.