Gideon Aran: Acts of violence as protest assemblies

Acts of violence occur primarily in the advanced stages of protest assemblies. The chain of events usually starts with the shouting of abuse and obscenities against police and lay citizens, moves on to spitting and hurling various objects at them, and finally to physical scuffles.

Written By Prof. Gideon Aran

The Haredim storm police barricades and do not retreat when faced with mounted officers armed with batons. Nor do they refrain from covert activities, often under the cover of darkness, mainly through drawing abusive graffiti or harming property by befouling, breaking and incinerating. In the past a small minority of the Haredim would also resort to underground sabotage actions.

So far there has been no evidence of the use of firearms by the Haredim and their preferred medium has been rocks. In some cases this weapon proved fatal. Other weapons, highly effective as a deterrent, have been spraying acid at women seen as immodest and hurling diapers filled with faeces at policemen trying to disperse demonstrations. In all such cases the Haredim have shown considerable resourcefulness, agility and daring.

Taken from “Body, Violence and Fundamentalism: The Case of Jewish Ultra-Orthodoxy”.

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