Skip to main content

Netanyahu's double standards on administrative detention

The detention of suspects without indictment or trial, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's proposed solution to Jewish terror, is neither new nor democratic and avoids implementing the most effective solution, two states for two peoples.
Yishai Schlissel (C) is escorted by security personnel at the Jerusalem Magistrates Court July 31, 2015. Schlissel is suspected of stabbing and wounding six participants at a Gay Pride parade in Jerusalem on Thursday.  REUTERS/Muammar Awad - RTX1MITX
Read in 

In the early morning hours of Aug. 3, I received a call from the BBC in London requesting an interview on the Israeli security cabinet's decision to apply administrative detention — arrest without indictment or trial — to Jews suspected of terror activity. The radio station's editor thought that the story of a Jew arresting another Jew and holding him without trial is a “man bites dog” story. I then understood that once again, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had played the media. See, the Israeli prime minister is not content with having simply asserted, “Terror is terror,” regardless of its origins. He must be seen as doing something about it. Once more Netanyahu is showing the world that here, all terrorists are equal before the law. He even established a special ministerial panel tasked with advising the government on additional measures to combat “events of this kind.”

If there is something new in the cabinet’s decision, then one has to wonder why the government is only now applying a law to Israelis that has been used against Palestinians living side by side with them. Over the years, why was this measure used only against Palestinian terror suspects? There is, however, nothing new in the cabinet’s decision. At best, it is an illusion.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.