Crime in Israel

Israelis were shocked when last Sat night a young father in Beersheva, Gadi Vichman, called down to a group of very noisy teenagers to be quiet. His wife had called the police twice to complain as had other neighbors, but no police came. Finally since his baby daughter could not sleep he went down at 2 am to remonstrate with them. They were drunk and had been smashing bottles. They got into an argument with him and one of them stabbed him to death!

The police then came and during their investigation they found a woman’s shoe. They manged to trace it to a girl who confessed to having been present and reenacted the crime for them. They got the names of most of the youths involved and arrested eight. FInally the stabber, Eden Ohion, 22, confessed and also reenacted the attack for them. A policewoman and an inspector, who had lied that they had responded to the earlier calls and had not found anything, have been suspended from the force. Israeli Police Chief Yochanan Danino said that they will all be treated very severely.

In general in Israel there are good laws, but lax enforcement. The police cannot be bothered to leave their cozy offices to respond to citizens’ complaints. There was a similar situation in Netanya when a large group of youths gathered at a particular spot on Rehov Nitza on the cliff top and were rowdy and noisy. The police said they couldn’t do anything unless they broke the law and they could make as much noise as they liked until 11 pm. This caused constant friction between the locals and the police, until the police started sending cruisers there every weekend night, until the group got the message.

Rami Saban, called the largest pimp in Israel, was sentenced to 18 years in prison for trafficking in women. He and four associates were found guilty of forcing women into prostitution, as well as slavery and mistreatment. Most of the young women came from Eastern Europe and were trafficked thru Turkey and Egypt. This has now become more difficult with the loss of control of the Sinai area by the Egyptian authorities and the building of a security fence along most of the Egypt-Israeli border.

In another case of sexual crimes, Moti Malka, the Mayor of a small town in the south, Kiryat Malachi (city of the angles or Los Angeles) and 8 others, have been arrested for forcing women to have sex with them at a private apartment. One of the women was a municipal worker and another was a single mother who received reduction in her city rates. By taking videos of the sex acts the group blackmailed the woment to continue. Further, the owner of the apartment was blackmailing the Mayor and others. Once the police found out about the illegal activities they recorded the ring in their acts and arrested the whole group. It is noteworthy that disgraced Israeli President Moshe Katsav, who was convicted of rape, had previously been the Mayor of Kiryat Malachi.

One should point out that the situation in the Palestine Authority is far worse. The Governor of Jenin was just fired when he criticized the governance by Fatah and scores of Fatah activists were arrrested on charges of extortion, kidnapping, armed robbery, murder and rape.

The above are only some of the prominent crimes in the news media in Israel now. What would the early Zionists have to say about these activities in Israel? Some of them would say we got what we wanted, Israel is a “normal” country.

About the Author
Jack Cohen was born in London and has a PhD in Chemistry from Cambridge University. He moved to the US and worked at the National Cancer Inst. and then Georgetown Medical School. In 1996, he Moved to Israel and became Chief Scientist of the Sheba Medical Center. He retired in 2001 and worked as a Visiting Professor at Hebrew University Medical School for 5 years.