Residents of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria have taken to physically blocking entry to government inspectors sent to issue no-work orders and enforce Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's settlement freeze.
So on Sunday, the government responded by ordering units of Israel's hard-nosed Yasam anti-terror police unit to accompany the inspectors. Yasam officers are known for being very effective in their efforts to battle terrorists, but are even more known for their brutal tactics when deployed against fellow Israelis.
In one incident on Sunday at the Samarian town of Kedumim, Yasam officers reportedly struck the town's mayor and threw several young local girls to the ground to clear a way for the inspectors.
The government of former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert came under heavy fire for deploying Yasam officers against young Jewish settlers trying to prevent the destruction of small settler outposts. A number of young, unarmed Jews were severely wounded in those clashes nearly two years ago.
Meanwhile, Netanyahu on Sunday reminded average Israelis that the settlers are their brothers, sent to settle Judea and Samaria much as Jews were sent to settle Tel Aviv a century earlier. Netanyahu's settlement freeze and settler opposition to it has resulted in increased public vilification of those Jews who hold to their biblical mandate to settle all of the land given by God to their forefathers.
The prime minister reiterated that the settlement freeze will end in 10 months, regardless of how the international community views the situation.