The Jerusalem Post reports:
Chief of Staff Dan Halutz declared Friday that the "rooftop youths" arrested for attacking security forces during the evacuation of Gush Katif settlements would not be drafted into the IDF.
"As long as I'm chief of staff, no one who dared attack a soldier or police officer will serve in the army," Halutz avowed to Israel Radio.
According to Halutz, the number of rioters was smaller than security forces had estimated it would be.
However, he continued, the "viciousness, the crudeness, and the messianic tendencies" should all cause people to start asking questions.
Bitter recriminations erupted Friday over the violence that flared on the roof of Kfar Darom's synagogue on Thursday evening. Some 70 soldiers and police were hospitalized, two in moderate condition and the rest lightly hurt, along with 14 protesters who were lightly hurt, after protesters poured a chemical substance - apparently paint thinner - on some of the evacuating forces.
The Army Spokesman's Office released video footage of troops screaming in pain, stripping off clothing and being doused down after being exposed to the chemicals.
Yomtov Samia, a former IDF general who helped mediate the evacuation of Kfar Darom, demanded that the settler leadership "do some serious rethinking" in the wake of the violence, by far the most serious incident in the evacuation process so far. He said the violent actions of the protesters had overshadowed what had otherwise been the overwhelmingly responsible behavior of the Gaza settlers, and had stained the wider image of the settlement enterprise.
Yehoshua Mor-Yosef, formerly a prominent member of the Council of Jewish Communities, the settlers' umbrella group, said those responsible were members of the so-called "Hilltop Youth," who had gathered at Kfar Darom and were beyond the control of the established settler leadership.
Israel's Attorney-General Menachem Mazuz said the offenders, dozens of whom were arrested, would be prosecuted.
First, it seems that the acid reported thrown on soldiers was really paint thinner, a highly caustic, flammable liquid that can blind.
Second, following an ideology that is a combination of Kahane, Chabad Rabbi Yitzchak Ginzburg and other right wing settler rabbis, I am afraid the so-called Hilltop Youth are only a portent of things to come – rabbinic inspired terrorism directed against Jews who do not support the radical ideology of the settler movement's right wing.
We lost a Temple, a Land and millions of Jewish lives because of this type of zealotry once. Let's hope we don't lose Israel and millions more because of it now.