In the video: Shabtai vs. Ben-Gvir: "The National Guard will dismantle the police and harm the security of the citizens" (Shlomi Gabay)
The retirement Tuesday evening of Commissioner Natan Bozna, head of the police fencing division responsible for thwarting crime in Arab society, is the final nail in the police's flagship project. The division, established by Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai in 2021 to great fanfare, has recently become a farce, and will be etched in the history books as a resounding failure.
The Seef Division was established to lead the fight against crime in Arab society, which refused to fade, and ignited hope among Arab citizens, who suffer severely from the violence. The police allocated him huge budgets and dozens of standards, and the police commissioner even appointed the first Arab Muslim commissioner, Jamal Hakrush, to head it.
Among other things, the division was supposed to help eradicate crime by providing assistance in selecting social projects for Arab society, including empowerment workshops for women who experienced violence and workshops at school. In addition, he was supposed to lead a process of recruiting Arab citizens to the police, in order to connect the entire society to the organization. However, from its first day of operation, the department has repeatedly failed to eradicate crime in Arab society, to such an extent that, according to police sources, it has become a "work arrangement" and a burden on the organization.
The flagship project collapsed. Minister Ben-Gvir and Police Commissioner Shabtai (Photo: Reuven Castro)
Then, against the background of the failure to eradicate crime in Arab society, at least partially, and public criticism, the division was dealt another blow – the head of the division, Lt. Gen. Hakrush, was filmed leaping over a body at a murder scene without calling for help, and was forced to retire from the police.
Hakrush's forced retirement was supposed to end the farce of the fencing wing. However, Commissioner Shabtai decided to continue maintaining the division, perhaps due to the lack of better alternatives, and appointed Bozna to head it.
Since then, during Bozna's tenure over the past year and a half, the number of murdered in Arab society has risen dramatically, and since the beginning of the year has already exceeded 90. The wave of murders refused to subside, and the prime minister decided to convene a meeting with the heads of the Arab factions to discuss the crisis.
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The final nail. Major General Natan Bozna (Photo: Israel Police Spokesperson's Office)
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However, even earlier, Public Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir announced the appointment of a projector to fight Arab crime, pushing Bozna into a corner, until the resounding resignation announcement a day later. According to a report on Channel 13 News, Bozna strongly criticized Ben-Gvir to his associates before his retirement: "They established a wing without teeth or the ability to influence, Ben-Gvir did not visit it even once."
Bozna's resignation, against the backdrop of the police commissioner's decision in principle to close the fencing division after a resounding series of failures, may speed up the process. The police are expected to announce the closure of the division in the near future, in order to divert the resources at its disposal to the national and district units that operate on an ongoing basis in the fight against crime in Arab society.
For Arab society, the failure of the wing that leads to its closure is not surprising. The Abraham Initiatives, which tries to promote equality between Jews and Arabs, claimed that the establishment of the wing was an attempt to put a Band-Aid on a phenomenon that stems from years of neglect and discrimination. According to them, in addition to appointing a projector to deal with the issue, the government must ensure a "multi-systemic, lateral and comprehensive mobilization."
- Military & Security
- Itamar Ben-Gvir
- Kobi Shabtai