Biden Admin Mulls Sanctions on Religious IDF Battalian Fighting Terrorists In West Bank and Gaza

2024-04-21 11:00:54

Almost a week after Iran unleashed hundreds of drones and missiles towards Israel and Hamas still holed up in Gaza’s terrorist stronghold of Rafah, President Joe Biden’s administration is reportedly considering sanctions on an Israeli military unit, accusing them of ‘human rights violation’ in the West Bank.

“The United States is set to impose sanctions on the Israel Defense Forces (IDF)’s Netzah Yehuda Battalion, marking the first time Washington has taken such action against an Israeli military unit,” the Israeli TV channel i24NEWS reported Saturday night.

According to the news channel, “the sanctions will include a ban on the transfer of U.S. military aid to the battalion and restrictions on its members’ participation in training activities funded by the United States.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the possible move by the Biden State Department to sanction Israeli servicemen while they were engaged in a decisive battle with Hamas terrorists in the wake of the October 7 massacre as ‘absurdity’ and a ‘moral low.’

“At a time when our soldiers are fighting terrorist monsters, the intention to sanction a unit in the IDF is the height of absurdity and a moral low,” the Israeli prime minister tweeted in Hebrew.

“In recent weeks, I have been working against the leveling of sanctions on Israeli citizens, including in my conversations with senior American government officials,” he added. “The government I head will act by all means against these moves.”

The IDF also rejected the charges of alleged misconduct levelled against Netzah Yehuda, praising the role played by the unit.

“The IDF Netzah Yehuda Battalion soldiers are currently participating in the war effort in the Gaza Strip. The battalion is professionally and bravely conducting operations in accordance to the IDF Code of Ethics and with full commitment to international law,” the IDF said in a press release Sunday. “In recent years, the battalion’s soldiers have been at the heart of operational duties working around the clock in order to protect Israeli civilians, while being a leading battalion with regards to recruitment of ultra-Orthodox citizens to the IDF.”

The Jerusalem Post reported the measure being considered by the Biden administration:

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is expected to announce sanctions against the IDF’s Netzah Yehuda Battalion in the next few days, according to three American sources.

The sanctions are a result of human rights violations against Palestinians in the West Bank.

This will be the first time that the United States government has imposed sanctions on an Israeli military unit for its activities in the West Bank.

The sources stated that the American sanctions will prohibit the transfer of US military aid to the Netzah Yehuda Battalion, will prevent its soldiers and officers from taking part in training with the United States military, and will prevent the soldiers from this unit from participating in activities that receive American funding.

The sanctions are based on a 1997 law by former Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy, which prohibits the United States from providing military aid or training to security forces, the military, or the police when there is reliable information about human rights abuses.

Netzah Yehuda Battalion, created in 1999 as as a special unit for ultra-orthodox soldiers, has a strength of 1000 servicemen. In past, Netzah Yehuda largely operated in Judea and Samaria region — also referred to as the West Bank. Since October 7, the unit has been serving in combat roles in Gaza as part of the IDF’s Swords of Iron operation.

The news comes as Palestinian terrorist groups continue to target Jews living in Judea and Samaria. “IDF forces neutralized two terrorists who attacked them Sunday at the Beit Einun junction between Kiryat Arba and Gush Etzion. One of the terrorists lunged at the soldiers with a knife while the second assailant opened fire at them. There were no casualties among the soldiers,” the Israeli news website YNET reported Sunday.

“Last week, a Border Police reservist was lightly wounded by sniper fire in the Singil Junction in the West Bank. This came just hours after the body of Israeli teenager Binyamin Achimeir, 14, was found with signs of violence. The body of Achimeir, a shepherd, was recovered at the end of an extensive search after his herd returned to the Malachi HaShalom settlement in the West Bank without him,” the news outlet added.

Bloomberg TV: Israel’s recent airstrike eliminated ‘entire’ IRGC terror leadership in Syria

The alleged Israeli airstrike, which rattled Tehran, reportedly succeed in wiping out the entire leadership of Iran’s Islamic Guard (IRGC) in Syria, the Bloomberg TV reports. In early April, a supposed Israeli strike in Damascus, Syria eliminated several IRGC terror commanders, including those holding the rank of generals.

The Jerusalem Post reported citing Bloomberg TV:

The Bloomberg television network revealed overnight into Saturday that in the attack attributed to Israel at the Iranian consulate in Syria, the entire command hierarchy responsible for the activities of the Revolutionary Guards in Syria and Lebanon was killed. According to the report, “the senior officers were pivotal for Hezbollah’s activities in the region.”

According to the reports, General Mohammad Reza Zahedi and his deputy, Mohammad Hadi Rahimi, along with other officers who were killed, were certain that the consulate building next to the embassy was “the safest” in Damascus and that Israel would not dare to attack the site.

Before the airstrike on the consulate building in Damascus, the residences of the ambassador and the consul were supposed to be transferred to a new apartment complex further down the same street, where the two brothers of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad also live. Shortly before the attack, the senior ranking officials of the IRGC in Syria met on the second floor of the consulate building and decided to stay there.

IDF hits Hezbollah terror targets in Lebanon

The Israeli air forces carried out strikes against Hezbollah targets as Iran-backed terrorist militia fired more rockets into northern Israel.

“Overnight, IAF fighter jets struck a number of Hezbollah terror targets in Lebanon, including an observation post in the area of Odaisseh, and two military structures in the area of Khiam,” the IDF revealed Sunday morning.

“During one of the strikes, a terrorist was identified operating inside a Hezbollah military structure in the area of Tayr Harfa. Shortly after the identification, fighter jets struck and destroyed the structure.”



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