Israel razes home of Palestinian suspect in killing of 2 soldiers


JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Israel Defense Forces demolished the home of a Palestinian man suspected of carrying out a West Bank shooting attack that killed two Israeli soldiers and seriously injured two others.

The two-story home of Asem Barghouti was razed before sunrise on Thursday in the village of Kobar, located north of Ramallah.

Barghouti was arrested more than three weeks after the Dec. 13 attack on a bus stop outside the Givat Asaf settlement. He is also accused of participating with his brother in the attack four days earlier outside Ofra in the West Bank that seriously injured a pregnant woman and led to the death of her prematurely delivered baby.

Israel razes the homes of Palestinians who attack and kill Jews as a deterrent to future attacks. The deterrent effect of demolitions has been shown to be small or insignificant, according to Hebrew University economist Esteban Klor,  and their continued use remains under debate. Critics describe it as collective punishment.

The IDF informed Barghouti’s family in late January that it would raze the home. The family appealed the decision to the Supreme Court but the court upheld the demolition.

One of the soldiers injured in the attack, Netanel Felber, a dual American and Israeli citizen from Silver Spring, Maryland, remains in a coma.

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