Opinion: The decision by the ‘government of change’ to bring back surveillance tech to track civilians in the battle against pandemic is a blatant violation of civil rights, and this coalition is not so different after all from the Netanyahu administration
COVID-19 test zone at the Ben Gurion Airport
Well, you can’t say that wasn’t quick! The public hasn’t even fully grasped the extend of the problem posed by the new COVID variant and the Shin Bet is already back snooping around. As if two years have not passed since the onset of COVID-19.
Since then, Israel has launched several massive vaccination campaigns that provided protection against the virus to almost an entire country.
As if we haven’t seen dozen of wrong diagnosis cases, which sent civilians into quarantine even though they never came in contact with a verified COVID patient. As a result, these people lost money due to not being able to work, while spending hours on the phone, begging Health Ministry officials to cancel their isolation.
Didn’t Prime Minister Naftali Bennett say “the Shin Bet tracking causes great damage to the Israeli economy and the public trust?”. Didn’t Foreign Minister Yair Lapid say in August 2020 that Shin Bet themselves aren’t interested in using their tracking system on civilians. Even Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz said in June 2020 using the security agency’s tools on civilians is “how democracy dies”.
Basically, when Benjamin Netanyahu was prime minister, Shin Bet tracking of civilians was a symptom of dictatorship, but now it’s just a useful tool.