I teach writing at a Palestinian university in the West Bank. Several of my students have been gracious enough to share their experiences with +972, albeit anonymously. This is the second of four short essays. Read part one here. I went with my family to our olive groves in order to pick olives. We went there full of happiness. When we arrived each one of us took his pail and stared to pick olives. We raced to see who could pick the most olives as quickly as possible. When we finished in the afternoon, the Israeli soldiers came and forced…Read More... | 9 Comments
The daily terrorism directed against Palestinians in the West Bank is reliant on the despair Palestinians have for the Israeli justice system. A case in point: olive trees burned to the ground. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz Amira Hass last week wrote about the "quiet terror attacks," the ones Israelis don't hear about. They occur on an almost daily basis and they are directed at Palestinian agriculture. Time after time, Palestinians' trees are set on fire, uprooted or cut down. Time after time, it happens in an area that is under Israeli control. Time after time, it happens within spitting…Read More... | 1 Comment
This week: Prisoner releases, house demolitions, weekly demonstrations, olive harvests, prayerful protests, and asylum seekers.Read More...
When violent hate crimes happen so often they become a non-story. Imagine a series of attacks on shops and businesses in your city. Every night, a gang of hooligans breaks windows, damages goods and sets fire to a different store. Now imagine that this same gang only targets businesses owned by a specific group of people - say, a chain of local stores owned and operated by blacks or Jews. The attacks go on for years and only worsen with time. If the store owner happens to be there, he or she is beaten and left bleeding at the front…Read More... | 40 Comments
The Israeli right-wing likes to claim that Palestinians fabricate the destruction of their olive trees. The police disagrees. Not that they are any good at catching the terrorists. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz When you besiege a city a long time, to make war against it in order to capture it, you shall not destroy its trees by swinging an axe against them; for you may eat from them, and you shall not cut them down. For is the tree of the field a man, that it should be besieged by you? Deuteronomy, 20:19 One of the most…Read More... | 5 Comments
This week: Palestinians face the separation wall and settler violence while harvesting olives, Afghan asylum seekers protest while under pressure in Brussels, Israelis face eviction from public housing, Palestinians debate prisoner exchanges, new barriers are built in Hebron, West Bankers wait for work, and Palestinian children face soldiers and water shortages.Read More...
For being one of the leaders of Nil'in's popular struggle against the wall, Muhammad Amira has been marked by military authorities and is consistently denied a permit to work his own lands - for unexplained 'security reasons.' Text by Haggai Matar Photos by Keren Manor/Activestills.org (This article has been updated) Meet Muhammad Amira from the West Bank village of Ni'ilin. At 43, married with four children, a science teacher at the local school, for six years Israel has banned Amira from visiting the 30 dunams (7.5 acres) of agricultural land his family owns, which are trapped behind the wall Israel…Read More... | 3 Comments
Human rights group suggests army could have prevented the attack. New data shows police rarely file indictments for violent crimes against Palestinians and their trees. Masked settlers attacked Palestinian olive pickers and Israelis who joined them on Sunday near the village of Burin, I reported here. Now, a video of the incident has come to light, showing what appears to be a planned, vicious and quick attack. The masked settlers, who reportedly came from the direction of the settlement of Yitzhar run toward the olive pickers, working at the height of the olive harvest. They throw stones at the Palestinians…Read More... | 12 Comments
Palestinian olive growers and their trees were attacked across the northern West Bank on Sunday, resulting in at least four injuries and the destruction of dozens of trees at the height of the yearly olive harvest. In the village of Burin on Sunday, Palestinian olive pickers and Israeli volunteers were attacked by masked settlers, who arrived from the direction of the nearby settlement of Yitzhar, notorious for being the home of many violent settlers/elements. Two Palestinians and two Israelis were injured by the settlers who attacked them with stones and iron bars, according to Rabbis for Human Rights, whose volunteers were…Read More... | 11 Comments
Since the start of this year's olive harvest, Israeli activists have been consistently responding to requests for additional hands from Palestinian farmers from the West Bank. In some of the orchards, the harvest takes place without incident. In others, friction with the army is constant. Instead of protecting the farmers, in accordance with a High Court order to do so, the army often fires tear gas on farmers and orders them out of their fields. Watch for more information on the most challenging harvest season yet, thanks to settler vandalism and army obstruction. Israel Social TV is an independent media NGO…Read More... | 35 Comments
Some 80,000 Palestinians families depend on the annual olive harvest for their livelihoods. This year alone, settlers, with the backing of the army, have destroyed or damaged thousands of olive trees, threatening both a major source of income and an age-old agricultural custom. By Alon Aviram Dry shrubs and a mishmash of makeshift tarpaulin shelters cover parts of this parched valley in the South Hebron Hills. The carcass of a car rests in the bottom of a cistern. According to Breaking the Silence, an organization of veteran combatants that works to expose to the Israeli public to the realities of…Read More... | 33 Comments
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