Thursday, August 18, 2005

They're Going In... Kfar Darom

Troops being lifted up to the roof.

Over a thousand protesters are on the roof of the shul [synagogue] in Kfar Darom (as well as in smaller numbers in other buildings), behind barbed wire. It looks like this extraction may get more messy than either side wants. They will be transporting troops to the roof via a shipping container lifted by a crane and taking down the protesters the same way. From the Jerusalem Post:

The forced evacuation of the Kfar Darom synagouge began on Thursday afternoon as hundreds of riot police stromed the compound.

At least 1,000 pullout opponents barricaded themselves behind rolls of barbed wire in the synagogue and on the rooftop.

A police water cannon was seen spraying the rooftop.

Youth on the roof are using paint bombs and spray guns with motor oil inside and appear well prepared for the forced evacuation.

A crane was brought in to lift a shipping container filled with police forces onto the rooftop.

OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Dan Harel went in the front door of the synagogue to try to talk the youth down but his efforts appeared to be in vain.

Earlier, protesters threw paintballs and eggs on the evacuating forces.

In a separate development, Kfar Darom was the scene of the first instance of refusal of orders since the disengagement operation began Monday.

A reserve border policeman who refused to participate in the evacuation of Kfar Darom was handed over to military police Thursday morning to face disciplinary measures.

Fellow policemen immediately converged upon him, took away his M-16 rifle, and whisked him from the scene.

The IDF Spokesman reiterated calls that any soldier who refuses to obey an order would be dealt with harshly.

IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz arrived in Kfar Darom shortly after noon on Thursday.

Some 200 residents and infiltrators were evacuated from the settlement by Thursday at 12:30 p.m., according to an Army Radio report.

After going to each house earlier to ask the residents to leave peacefully, security forces have begun going door-to-door to forcibly evict any who remain.

Evacuation teams continued to forcibly evict people holed up in Midreshet Kfar Darom, a seminar center on the outskirts of the settlement.

Channel 2 showed footage of soldiers escorting men, women, and children out of the building.

OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Dan Harel told Army Radio earlier Thursday that Kfar Darom would be fully evacuated by evening.

Security forces swarmed the embattled settlement early Thursday morning in what officers said would be Israel's most challenging settlement evacuation.
IDF spokesman said two full brigades - roughly 5,000 soldiers and policemen - were operating in the settlement.

As opposed to every other evacuation, police were in riot gear, some of them wearing helmets and holding shields and batons.


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