Several days ago a family of five was murdered in their home in Itamar, a Jewish Settlement in the Occupied Territories. The people who live in Itamar are orthodox Jews who believe that land that was promised to the Jews by God may not be given up.
Despite international condemnation and despite the fact that most other countries consider Jewish settlements in the territories occupied by Israel in the Six Day War to be illegal, these have mushroomed with the support of Israeli governments over the years and prosper under the protection of the Israeli army and security services. Ideology-driven Orthodox Jews are willing to risk not only their own lives but also the lives of their children. The Israeli government risks the lives of its soldiers to protect them.
Murder is despicable. Murder of innocent children even more so. But settlers’ activities in the Occupied Territories are often also detestable. They very rarely stoop as low as murder but with the backing of the Israeli government they get away with a lot.
In retaliation to the murder in Itamar, the Israeli government has announced that it will allow the building of a further 500 homes in the Occupied Territories.
Will this promote peace or is it a case of "extremists of the world unite"?