Security Force or Anti-Arab Militia? Israelis Feud Over Far-Right Plan

April 02, 2023

Itamar Ben-Gvir, the minister for national security, has long pushed for such a national guard. He says the proposed guard is an essential mechanism for preserving Israeli security during times of crisis. Mr. Ben-Gvir is one of the most extreme voices in Israel’s government, its most right-wing ever. But critics say the national guard proposal would still endanger Israel’s Palestinian minority, which forms roughly 20 percent of the country’s 9 million population. According to Mr. Bar-Lev’s plan, Mr. Ben-Gvir would not have day-to-day control over the guard, just as he is currently barred from controlling daily police operations.