Professor apologizes for outburst


An Israeli professor apologized for cursing troops who evicted settlers from disputed West Bank properties.

Hillel Weiss, a professor of Jewish studies at Bar-Ilan University, was in Hebron during last week’s eviction of two squatter families and appeared on national media calling for the death of a senior army commander involved in the operation.

The remarks drew an outcry from Israeli top brass and politicians, prompting police to investigate whether Weiss had incited to violence. On Monday he announced that he had sent a letter of apology to the military chief of staff and said he never intended for his invective to be taken personally.

“I said that I was ashamed of my curses, that this was a terrible lapse,” Weiss told Israel Radio.

Weiss said his daughter was among the settlers removed from buildings in a Hebron marketplace to which Palestinians claim ownership, and that he was outraged by what he described as the excessive force of police and troops involved in the evictions.

“I was thrown out of my daughter’s house along with her and the babies, very forcibly,” he said. “I came out full of anger and fury, and this was reflected in my remarks.”

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