“Another three violent robberies committed by disgusting Bedouins. Nonsense. The most important point is that now there’s yet another stupid and superfluous position in the already inflated national police headquarters – head of the Crime Prevention Department.”

These were the harsh words used by former Police Commissioner Aryeh Amit, formerly head of police in the Southern region, to describe the situation in the south of the country – a situation that looks very much like the police have lost control of the situation.

“Already seventeen years ago,” Amit told Radio 103FM, “it was clear to me that the ‘State of Israel’ didn’t really exist in the Negev. And since then, things have only gotten worse – in fact, the situation has exploded, with the state losing control and effectively withdrawing from the south. There’s no police deterrence there, no governance, nothing. The only people doing good work in the Negev are the Green Patrol [a special unit originally created by former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to police the Negev -ed.]. Other than that, the Bedouins do whatever they want. The State of Israel has failed to take any effective action for at least the last twenty years.”