Alongside the newly named IDF chief of staff, Yoav Galant, his new deputy chief will be Gen. Yair Naveh. Naveh has the distinction of being responsible for the Palestinian targeted killings which Anat Kamm leaked to Haaretz journalist, Uri Blau. These West Bank murders completely contravened Supreme Court rulings which directed that such assassinations be avoided if there were civilians present and likely to be harmed; or if there were non-violent means available to apprehend the suspects.
Maariv quotes Naveh’s reply to this claim:
“Stop bothering me with the rulings of the Supreme Court. I don’t know when they apply and when they don’t. I do know that targeted killings work and prevent terror attacks. I take my orders from the operations command [and not human rights activists].”
When asked by Blau: “Why do you approve beforehand an attack on an unidentified target [an innocent bystander],’ Naveh answered: ‘These are questions you shouldn’t direct to me. These matters are approved at the level of the prime minister and what is done is done. Generally, this bunch [Palestinian militants] pals around with a nasty bunch, not with nice people.”
That’s the level of strategic doctrine and tactical sophistication in the IDF high command. If you spend time with a Palestinian militant you’re as good as dead. It doesn’t matter if you’re his mother, wife, daughter or grandmother. You’re as good as being a killer yourself. This is precisely the reason that human rights activists are so eager to bring killers like Naveh to justice. He’s pulling a Dick Cheney thumbing his nose at the notion of accountability, basically daring the world to throw Ehud Olmert into the Hague docket with him.
You will find that once an IDF general is detained abroad and brought to justice that Israel will all of a sudden discover its own conscience just as it has in the aftermath of the storm of bad PR that beset it thanks to the Goldstone Report. Israel currently whitewashes such crimes committed on its behalf by its generals. The only way to affirm the concept of accountability is for an international body to ring Israel’s bell and give it a moral wake up call.
Among the other peculiarities of Naveh’s previous IDF service were the lax security procedures within Naveh’s office which allowed Kamm to obtain 2,000 secret documents, which she offered to Blau because she believed that doing so would prove that war crimes had been committed by his command.
Naveh has the additional distinction of being CEO of the Jerusalem light rail project, for which he urged gender-segregated seating in order to a mollify ultra-Orthodox Jews who might otherwise shun this form of public transportation. Instead of understanding the violation of human rights and dignity that such a prohibition would inflict on women, Naveh couched his position in terms of going the extra mile to accommodate Israel’s extreme Judaist (cf. “Islamist”) tendencies.
For this veritable festival of follies, Naveh was singled out for promotion to the second highest military position in the land. Against this backdrop, Israeli notables like Shulamit Aloni, Uri Avnery, Alice Shalvi, Nurit Peled, and Natan Zach, and the human rights NGO, Yesh Gvul, have applied to the Supreme Court for an injunction preventing Naveh to take his position on the Palestinian killing fields, claiming his is an “immoral appointment” afflicted with profound taint.
Zach, one of Israel’s most distinguished poets, is so fed up with conditions in contemporary Israel, he stated publicly that he was ready to join a Gaza flotilla because of the brutality which has penetrated into the nation’s soul:
Not a day goes by when people are not murdered here. The violence on the roads and in schools seeps into our lives due to the Conquest (“Occupation”).