US To Sanction Nahal Charedi-Netzach Yehuda Battalion, PM Slams ‘New Height Of Absurdity’

Soldiers of the Neztah Yehuda Battalion complete the final stages of a 40 kilometer journey all throught the night of Feb 16 2010. The ultra orthodox brigade (Nahal Haredi) was created in 1999 by a group of rabbis in cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces and the Ministry of Defense, as a venue for young men who wish to serve the national interests of Eretz Yisrael while adhering to the highest religious standards. From a small unit of 30 soldiers, Nahal Haredi has become an IDF battalion of close to 1,000 . Photo by Abir Sultan/Flash90

JERUSALEM (VINnews) — The USA is set during the coming week to impose sanctions on the IDF Netzach Yehuda battalion, according to a report by Axios

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The sanctions will prevent the transfer of American aid or equipment to the battalion, and prevent its officers from training with USA forces.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made the decision based on incidents that occurred in Judea and Samaria prior to the October 7th massacre. The battalion is considered one of the more popular destinations for “hilltop youth” seeking to enlist in the IDF, and has been accused of abusive conduct towards Palestinian Authority Arabs in the past.

Secretary Blinken stated that the sanctions were called for under the Leahy law that forbids aid to foreign militaries that violate international law, and that the decision had been made after a lengthy and careful investigation.

The USA investigation against them has been underway since late 2022, when soldiers from the battalion left Omar Assad, a Palestinian Authority Arab with American citizenship, handcuffed and gagged in cold conditions for several hours, after which he was found dead.

The IDF stated that it was investigating the incident and would take disciplinary or administrative action against those responsible, as well as expressing its deep regret for the  Arab’s death. Shortly afterwards, the battalion was reassigned to the Golan Heights.

Prime Minister Netanyahu commented on the sanctions against Netzach Yehuda: “It is forbidden to sanction the IDF. I have been working for the last weeks against sanctions targeting Israelis, including in my conversations with senior American officials. While our soldiers are fighting the monster of terrorism, the intention to sanction a unit in the IDF is a new height of absurdity and a moral low. The government I lead will work against this step in every possible way.”

Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich denounced the move: “The American decision to sanction the IDF while Israel is fighting for its existence is completely insane.”

Minister Benny Gantz declared that the US move was a  tactical blunder: “Netzach Yehuda is an inseparable part of the IDF. Sanctions against it send the wrong message to our enemies.”

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir threatened action of his own: ”If the Defense Minister does not support Netzach Yehuda against the sanctions, I will ask that they be transferred to the Border Police under my control. We will welcome them as heroes.”

Minister Ofir Sofer called the sanctions ”Wind in our enemies’ sails.”

Likud MK Tali Gottlieb slammed the US, stating: “Who are you that you dare to impose sanctions on the charedi IDF unit of Netzach Yehuda? This is comtemporary antisemitism! I’m sick of this control by the US over us and its open threats. I expect a condemnation of this disgusting threat on our soldiers. The US is stepping on us cunningly, giving a slap for every caress. I refuse to live in a battered state.”

MK Tzvi Sukkot (Religious Zionism) responded by stating that “You (Nahal Haredi) may be used to being villified by the left and the media, and now the Americans have joined the list, but you have lost several friends in battle and have fought like lions in every sector, arresting and killing terrorists without a need to apologize. Let them all jump around and just go on exactly as you were. Netzach Yehuda – for us you are the best there is.’


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1 month ago

I do ask US , please do not !