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The Wall, 10 years on / part 12: Where do we go from here?

Ten years have passed since Israel started building the wall, probably the largest and most expensive construction project in its history, which does not seem to be going anywhere. For four months now I’ve been presenting its story, and now it is time to offer some breaking updates, look into the future, and conclude. The final chapter of the series.

The Wall: 10 years on (Oren Ziv / Activestills)

Project photography: Oren Ziv / Activestills

This was supposed to be a four part mini-project for the week of Passover. However, as work progressed, interview followed interview, and the tours along the wall’s route unraveled new stories, and as the gap between the magnitude of the project and the lack of in-depth writing about it in mainstream media became clear – the series grew longer, only to reach its end now.

But before we conclude, some recent important developments must be shared. In the first and eleventh chapters, I mentioned the massive gaps in the wall: dozens of unbuilt miles of the route in the eastern part of Gush Etzion and the Adumim plains near Jerusalem. About four years ago, the state stopped construction in these parts due to the pause in hostilities, insufficient funds, and a fear that U.S. pressure and High Court intervention would make it harder to complete the approved route which effectively annexes huge swaths of Palestinian West Bank lands.

This pause in construction is now coming to an end. A recent statement made in court by the head of the wall project, Colonel Ofer Hindi, indicates that Israel is getting ready to resume construction in these two parts. The statement was confirmed this week by the Ministry of Defense in reply to an inquiry by +972. The confirmation stated that the ministry is currently “conducting evaluations and examining beginning construction of the Gush Etzion route, pending judicial approval. The route in the Adumim plains will be reevaluated over the course of 2013.”

This is big news. Alongside the resumption of deliberation of two petitions pending in the High Court, this could also prompt a revival of the popular Palestinian struggle in the villages south of Bethlehem, possible resistance by settlers in the Gush area, and perhaps even a renewed international interest in the route deemed illegal by the International Court of Justice. In fact, Hindi’s statement has already led foreign diplomats stationed in Tel Aviv who read this series to invite me to share thoughts on the renewed construction for a report to their government.

And two more short updates: in a discussion on the wall’s effects on natural surroundings, I mentioned attempts made by the village of Battir to gain World Heritage Site status from UNESCO in order to stop the wall. Apparently due to internal conflicts within the Palestinian delegation, the UNESCO annual convention has since decided to recognize another local site, the Church of the Nativity and its surroundings, leaving Battir’s ancient terraces in harm’s way.

Discussing the misfortunes brought upon the village of Walajah, I wrote that the wall is planned to surround it in all directions. In recent weeks, however, villagers received a new map of the route, which indicates a possible opening in the wall to the southwest. Activists mention that there are not yet any guarantees for this, and that even if this part is left open, the village would still lose most of its lands and be detached from the urban center of Bethlehem and the rest of the West Bank. “Our most minimal demand is to maintain free passage to Beit Jala,” tells me Sheerin al Araj, a prominent activist in the village. “This we have not yet accomplished.”

The new route around Walajah (The Civil Administration)

The new route around Walajah. Open to the southwest (The Civil Administration)

The wall and the occupation

Throughout this series I tried to focus on the wall itself and its implications, without broadening the argument to the entire system of occupation and settlement. But as I move toward the end, it is crucial to remember how the wall is but one piece in the puzzle of the military regime ruling over the lives of millions, with its two separate legal systems, its home demolitions, its siege on Gaza, and much more. As Haaretz’s Amira Hass always reminds readers, the story of the wall cannot be detached from the permit system put in place in 1991, which has since continuously expanded in extreme ways.

“Many people, including judges we face in court, don’t understand the meaning of occupation’s bureaucracy,” says attorney Shira Hertzanu from Yadin Elam’s law firm, which deals with countless cases revolving around the seam zone on behalf of Hamoked. “Take farmers who want to reach their lands beyond the fence: they might not get an answer for their request for months, then not get it in writing, and procedures keep changing and growing harder all the time. Even when someone is summoned for a hearing at the DCO [District Coordination Office], they might find themselves waiting for hours only to be informed that the officer in charge just isn’t around.

“So people despair. Farmers give up on their trees. People living in the seam zone loose touch with life in the West Bank and consider leaving home and crossing to the ‘Palestinian’ side of the wall. The wall is still new, in many parts less than ten years old, but it’s frightening to see the process of annexation happening in front of your eyes.”

Women on their way to Jerusalem from Ramallah on Ramadan (Oren Ziv / Activestills)

Women on their way to Jerusalem from Ramallah on Ramadan (Oren Ziv / Activestills)

This rationale of the permit system does not only apply to the seam zone, and ones much like it can also be found in the Jordan Valley, and the “special security zones” around South Hebron Hills settlements, and with time in more and more locations across the West Bank. “The notion that a Palestinian would need a permit to get to his land started with agricultural areas that got stuck behind settlement fences, widened dramatically with the wall, and the most recent development is how this is reasoning is duplicated to areas where there is no fence at all,” says attorney Michael Sfard, who is representing villagers from Beit Furik in a petition against the state’s decision to seal off parts of their land in order to protect the settlement of Itamar and its illegal satellite settlements.

“Now the state tells the court that permits can be arranged to enter the zone whenever farmers wish, but knowing the seam way of thinking I’m positive that after the petition is over and done with we’ll hear the army say ‘there’s no reason to farm the land during winter’ or something, and people will lose touch with their land. This is how Israel divides and rules Palestinians and creates apartheid through legal and physical means.”

As recently mentioned here in a different context, and as Noam Sheizaf excellently put it, all these tools of oppression will go on serving Israel for as long as the status quo remains its most rational choice. As long as Palestinian popular resistance and international pressure don’t grow significantly, Israel will not be the one to voluntarily end the stagnation in negotiations, and peace initiatives such as the Arab League’s will remain unanswered. Until such a time of change, the occupation and apartheid are here to stay. And so is The Wall.

Here to stay. The wall around Jerusalem (Oren Ziv / Activestills)

Here to stay. The wall around Jerusalem (Oren Ziv / Activestills)

The fate of walls and empires

The story sounds so odd that it might actually be true: Scattered reports by activists in Jayous, a single line in a Wikipedia page, and several long posts in a site that went offline sometime after work on this series started all claim that the Scottish town of Falkirk has signed a twinning contract with the Palestinian village of Jayous. A short Youtube clip confirms that even if this initiative is not given official status, there are surely some town people pushing for it.

The reasoning for this move was offered in the now-unavailable site and can still be seen in the clip. Falkirk sits on the old route of the Antonine Wall, built by the Romans to safeguard their northern border in the British Isle. The wall and all its fortifications lasted just twenty years before the empire retreated to its previous more southern border.

The people of Falkirk and Jayous thought that there would be a legitimate symbolism in linking their histories, and thus somehow encouraging the Palestinian village’s popular struggle against the wall built on their lands. The link was also meant as a reminder of the temporary nature of all walls and empires. It is with this reminder to all of us as well that I wish to end.

All things must pass. The Antonine Wall in Falkirk (Kim Traynor)

All things must pass. The Antonine Wall in Falkirk (Kim Traynor)

——

The Wall Project could not have been made possible were it not for the assistance of countless dedicated Palestinian and Israeli activists, extremely patient interviewees, the support of the +972 editors, and of course – my good friend and excellent photographer Oren Ziv of the Activestills collective. All of these I wish to thank deeply.

——

Previous chapters in this series:

Part 1: The great Israeli project
Part 2: Wall and Peace
Part 3: An acre here and an acre there
Part 4: Trapped on the wrong side
Part 5: A new way of resistance
Part 6: What has the struggle achieved?
Part 7: A village turned prison
Part 8: A working class under siege
Part 9: Dividing land – water, fauna, flora
Part 10: My encounters with the wall in space
Part 11: Security for Israel?

And the supplement podcast: +972 bloggers explore Israeli walls and borders

For additional original analysis and breaking news, visit +972 Magazine's Facebook page or follow us on Twitter. Our newsletter features a comprehensive round-up of the week's events. Sign up here.

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  • COMMENTS

    1. Prometheus

      “Falkirk sits on the old route of the Antonine Wall, built by the Romans to safeguard their northern border in the British Isle. The wall and all its fortifications lasted just twenty years before the empire retreated to its previous more southern border.”
      .
      Totally irrelevant analogy.
      1 – Israel is not an empire.
      2 – Any wall is only as strong as are it’s defenders
      .
      There is only one (1) person to blame for the wall construction – Yasser Arafat.
      He wanted to have it all and and enter the history as a man who created the state of Palestine and returning refugees – but instead he achieved nothing and only brought enormous suffering upon his people (not speaking of the money he stolen etc.)
      .
      Where do we go from here?
      To the Two State Solution of course, for there is nowhere else to go.
      Refugees won’t return into Israel because that would mean humanitarian catastrophe for entire Israel’s population.
      The wall is the future borders of Israel and Palestine, with some probable land swaps.
      Jerusalem might be divided – or might not, depending on international situation.

      Reply to Comment
    2. Haggai Matar

      Two small questions: How can there be land swaps without taking down large parts of the wall, if the wall annexes some 8% of Palestinian land, and doesn’t curve the other way, into Israel?
      And how can Jerusalem be split without taking down the wall around it?

      Reply to Comment
    3. Prometheus

      1 – There is nothing technically impossible in taking down and re-routing part of the wall should there be any kind of agreement with ALL Palestinian parties.
      .
      Obviously as long as there is even one cell/group which is willing and able to conduct any kind of warfare against Israel’s population/military there won’t be any negotiations or agreements for there is nothing to talk to with a body which does not control itself completely or at least almost completely.
      .
      2 – Again – there is nothing impossible. For instance Jerusalem might be split as an ending event in proclaiming the Palestinian state.
      Not that there is one single reason why Palestinians should have their capital in Jerusalem – it has no historic precedence, but if situation would allow I personally don’t mind. However in such case the control of Temple Mount must be given to third party – UN or something.

      Reply to Comment
    4. Jack

      Prometheus,
      And what makes you belive that palestinians would accept two state solution? They have waited for many decades for a state only to see it demolished, their culture vanished, their people cleansed, their land taken on a continued basis and their counterpart vehemently rejecting any palestinian statehood. The west bank look like a swiss cheese, carved up like bantustans so rather the result of this would indeed be apartheid or binational state.
      I bet world wont accept a large scale ethnic cleansing like in 1948.
      -
      Israel and its supporters like to think two state solution is something they could pick up once and awhile when it fits them. A clear blunder.

      Reply to Comment
    5. Jehudah

      The “wall”, made up, of course, mostly of wire fence (so, why call it a “wall”…??) has been set up, legally; and, has been instrumental in the saving of probably thousands of Jewish lives.

      Therefore, the question: If we are to promote human rights, and if the very first of all of human rights is the right to life and the protection of human life, including the life of Jews, for those who don’t count us as beings who deserve such rights, why shouldn’t we be pleased with this passive devise that has been placed at the hands of the defenders of human rights?

      Really, are we that cynical about Jewish life…??!!

      Reply to Comment
    6. Jack

      Jehudah,
      Because it is a wall, even when International court of Justice looked into the issue they concluded that wall was the most plausible name to refer to it. Why do you keep reapting old arguments? The main problem with the wall is that its built on stolen palestinian land.

      Reply to Comment
    7. Haggai Matar

      Jehudah – we’ve been over this in previous posts. As Jack says, it’s (mainly) not about a wall, any wall, it’s about the route of this wall, which doesn’t follow the Green line.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Kolumn9

      @jack, the Palestinians already declared a state and control territory. They will soon get UN recognition as a state. The two state solution is a fact with no permanent agreement required. What the Palestinians do or do not accept is completely irrelevant.
      .

      There will almost certainly be a wall between Israel and Palestine. The route will probably change somewht, but unlike Prometheus I doubt that it will be as a result of land swaps. The Palestinians are not getting territory equivalent to the 1967 lines in a future deal. There

      Reply to Comment
    9. Prometheus

      Jack,
      “And what makes you belive that palestinians would accept two state solution?”
      .
      Because on one is going to ask them this time. Indeed, it’s well known that Palestinians would oppose anything less than total annihilation of Jewish state, so why would anyone bother and talk to them?
      -
      “They have waited for many decades for a state only to see it demolished, their culture vanished, their people cleansed, their land taken on a continued basis and their counterpart vehemently rejecting any palestinian statehood.”
      .
      Lies lies lies.
      Palestinians could easily declare a state between 1948 and 1967, but they did not.
      Why? Because they wanted entire territory, preferably Juden-frei.
      -
      “The west bank look like a swiss cheese, carved up like bantustans so rather the result of this would indeed be apartheid or binational state.
      I bet world wont accept a large scale ethnic cleansing like in 1948.”
      .
      The only foreseeable ethnic cleansing is that of Israelis (Jews and Arabs alike) should by any bad chance the refugees would be granted the right to return. Otherwise there is absolutely no-one to cleanse.
      BTW, the world does not care.
      -
      “Israel and its supporters like to think two state solution is something they could pick up once and awhile when it fits them. A clear blunder.”
      .
      Two state solution was offered by the UN, to which you have such an enormous respect.

      Reply to Comment
    10. Prometheus

      The Green Line have nothing whatsoever to do with all and any Palestinian Arabs.

      Reply to Comment
      • Barry Rosen

        The wall sure looks bad according to the left, because they dont want to talk about the 20,000 terrorist attacks Israel has endured, including the Passover bombing, disco bombing, Sbarros bombing, 23
        bus bombings, or the results of 4 little girls with bullet holes in their head, deliverately put by Palestinian gunmen.

        And then you wish the wall was higher, thicker, and finished.

        Reply to Comment
    11. Jack

      Prometheus,
      So you propose a two state resolution but now you say you don belive in the idea? What is it?
      -
      Palestinians recogized two states in the late 80s but they didnt get the same response back by Israel and surely today when annexation is eating up West bank they arent encouraged. Therefore you nor Israel could coming on and off to say you would work for a two state goal, the offer is long overdue. That is a solution of the past, you rejected it in the past, cant turn back the clock.
      -
      In 1947 palestinians voted no on partition (a resolution, which of couse were non legally anyway), if this just were to be respected we wouldnt have this conflict today. In 1967 Israel attacked Syria and Egypt, so obviously you have this year wrong. In the early 70s Egypt offered peace though, Israel turned it down, maybe you are thinking of this offer? And using slurs like “judenfrei” just expose your obsession to paint everything in brown color. Grow up.
      -
      Yes the world cares and especially the arab world in this changing time. Israel cannot win that pressure. Even UK official admit that there is a turning point going on among the general people. Simply they are fed up what Israel is doing.
      -
      Israel losing international support, says British ambassador
      http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/aug/03/israel-losing-international-support-brittish-ambassador

      Reply to Comment
    12. Jehudah

      “…it’s about the route…”

      1) If it is mainly about the route, why call something a name that it is not and not even apologize for attempting to mislead one’s readers…??
      2) The route was approved by the Israel’s Supreme Court after many objections have been presented to it; some of which it has accepted, but others it has not and chose, legally, to go along with the present route.
      3) The devise has saved thousands of lives. Is there not a degree of appreciation on the part of the author for the fact that human life has been saved; for the fact that the very first of all human rights, i.e. the right to life and to its defense, has been applied successfully? Or, rather, since the lives saved are Jewish lives the concept is of a lesser value in the eyes of the author? And, if so, one wonders, why…??

      Reply to Comment
    13. Prometheus

      “Palestinians recogized two states in the late 80s but they didnt get the same response back by Israel”
      .
      Not truth.
      Palestinians have always insisted on two states + return of refugees which actually means one state.
      .
      Two State Solution as seen by Israel means two countries for two nations and no return to refugees.
      -
      “and surely today when annexation is eating up West bank they arent encouraged. Therefore you nor Israel could coming on and off to say you would work for a two state goal, the offer is long overdue.”
      .
      You see, today Palestinian Arabs aren’t exactly in position to offer anything or even to negotiate. Simply – they have absolutely nothing to offer, not even a promise.
      -
      “That is a solution of the past, you rejected it in the past, cant turn back the clock.”
      .
      You are hallucinating.
      -
      “In 1947 palestinians voted no on partition (a resolution, which of couse were non legally anyway), if this just were to be respected we wouldnt have this conflict today.”
      .
      In 1947 Palestinians voted against the right of Jews to have own country. They were against any peaceful coexistence, which is why they must have been cleansed.
      -
      “In 1967 Israel attacked Syria and Egypt, so obviously you have this year wrong.”
      .
      Are you on drugs or something? In 1967 Israel occupied part of Jordan as well – WB and Jerusalem.
      -
      “In the early 70s Egypt offered peace though, Israel turned it down, maybe you are thinking of this offer?”
      .
      No. I am speaking of the possibility which the Palestinians had from 1948 to 1967 to declare own country. They did not.
      -
      “And using slurs like “judenfrei” just expose your obsession to paint everything in brown color. Grow up.”
      .
      At least I don’t have an obsession of ethnic-cleansing all Israelis, like you do.
      -
      “Yes the world cares and especially the arab world in this changing time.”
      .
      Have you ever spoken about Palestinians with other Arabs?
      -
      “Israel cannot win that pressure. Even UK official admit that there is a turning point going on among the general people. Simply they are fed up what Israel is doing.
      -
      Israel losing international support, says British ambassador
      http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/aug/03/israel-losing-international-support-brittish-ambassador
      -
      Yawn. You are boring. “Israelis might wake up in 10 years’ time and find out that the level of understanding in the international community has suddenly changed, and that patience for continuing the status quo has reduced,”
      .
      That’s why in 10 year’s time there will be a Palestinian state, disregard what one or another Palestinian wishes.

      Reply to Comment
    14. Jack

      Prometheus,
      You are arguing against international law. Its not palestinians fault that they were cleansed and denied the right to return. Also palestinians have supported the Arab peace initiative that rather call for a settlement when it comes diaspora palestinians.
      -
      Palestinians are at waiting at the table, they have demanded like Obama that Israel only put a freeze to illegal settlements which Israel refuse to do. They even let Israel keep settlements in a deal. It was vehemently rejected by Israel. For Israel only a palestinian free territory is what matters.
      -
      Why did you just repeat what you said? The question and fact is very simple, if the israeli side just had accepted a “no” in 1947, which again only were a proposal (not sure why you climb yourself onto this irrelevant non binding resolution) there wouldnt be any conflict.
      -
      Yes Israel attacked in 1967, why do you claim palestinians refused peace in 1967? You seems to be confused?
      -
      Oh you making the argument that arabs dont care about palestinian issue? Take a good look on polls regarding this. Apparently you will be surprised.
      And apparently you didnt thought averge joe were tired of Israel actions.

      Reply to Comment
    15. Prometheus

      Jack,
      “Its not palestinians fault that they were cleansed and denied the right to return.”
      .
      Maybe. However it’s 100% their fault that until now they haven’t declared a state.
      .
      “Also palestinians have supported the Arab peace initiative that rather call for a settlement when it comes diaspora palestinians.

      .
      We discussed that already. You are wrong.
      .
      “Palestinians are at waiting at the table, they have demanded like Obama that Israel only put a freeze to illegal settlements which Israel refuse to do. They even let Israel keep settlements in a deal. It was vehemently rejected by Israel. For Israel only a palestinian free territory is what matters.”
      .
      Nonsense. Israel is building the wall as a border for the future Palestinian state.
      -
      “if the israeli side just had accepted a “no” in 1947, which again only were a proposal (not sure why you climb yourself onto this irrelevant non binding resolution) there wouldnt be any conflict.”
      .
      Obviously, accepting “no” was not an option. Arabs were given a chance for peaceful coexistence, but they declined.
      .
      “Yes Israel attacked in 1967, why do you claim palestinians refused peace in 1967? You seems to be confused?”
      .
      You seem to have problem understanding long sentences.
      From 1948 to 1967 Palestinians have had a chance to declare state. They did non do it. Why? Answer is simple and obvious – because they needed no state at the time.
      -
      “Oh you making the argument that arabs dont care about palestinian issue? Take a good look on polls regarding this. Apparently you will be surprised.”
      .
      Your questions and propositions are irrelevant. Go and speak with other Arabs about Palestinian Arabs. Preferably speak to Lebanese, Jordanians or Egyptians.
      .
      “And apparently you didnt thought average joe were tired of Israel actions.”
      .
      That it exactly the reason why the wall must be complete ASAP and the Palestinian state must be proclaimed in WB and Gaza.

      Reply to Comment
    16. Haggai Matar

      Jehudah – what mislead? Read the project. It’s about the route and its effects.
      And yes, as mentioned in the series, the route was approved in the Supreme Court in Israel (parts of it still pending), and ruled illegal by the ICJ. All is clear and known and writen.

      Reply to Comment
    17. Jack

      Prometheus,
      Palestinians are unable to create a state based on international law because Israel refuse. However thats not the topic, the topic is all those palestinians that want to return home. You deny them this right and you therefore deny international law.
      -
      You could read the Arab peace initiative instead of typing desperate rejections.
      -
      If you read the polls you see that the palestinian issue is valued very high. Obviously you have swallowed the hasbara that the arabs hate palestinians and couldnt care less. Again facts not fiction is what matters in these discussions.
      -
      Not the question my link was in response to the false sentence of yours when you claimed ‘nobody cares’. So why are you fabricating stuff? Dont you think people see this?

      Reply to Comment
    18. Prometheus

      Jack,
      “Palestinians are unable to create a state based on international law because Israel refuse.”
      .
      Nonsense. Israel can not block declaration of the state.
      .
      “However thats not the topic, the topic is all those palestinians that want to return home. You deny them this right and you therefore deny international law.”
      .
      There is no law which says that the right to return precede the right for peaceful living
      .
      “You could read the Arab peace initiative instead of typing desperate rejections”
      .
      I read it multiple times. As long as any kind of deal includes the right of return – there is no deal. It’s not negotiable. Arabs know that, therefore any peace initiative which includes this issue is void from the very beginning and has malicious intentions.
      .
      “If you read the polls you see that the palestinian issue is valued very high.”
      .
      Again – it is valued as long as it stays anti-Jewish
      .
      “Obviously you have swallowed the hasbara that the arabs hate palestinians and couldnt care less. Again facts not fiction is what matters in these discussions.”
      .
      There is nothing that it obvious to you.
      Polls are not facts, but tools.
      .
      “Not the question my link was in response to the false sentence of yours when you claimed ‘nobody cares’. So why are you fabricating stuff? Dont you think people see this?”
      .
      ROFL. What exactly did I fabricated?

      Reply to Comment
    19. Jack

      Prometheus,
      Israel have blocked a settlement for decades, the occupation deny their right to create a state based on international law.
      -
      Yes there is international law also basic human rights, that gives refugees the right to return to where they came from before the outbreak of the inicident.
      -
      No you havent read it “multiple times”, they call for a settlement meaning they have offered to reject international law and resolutions granting refugees right to return but again Israel rejected this offer.
      -
      You see anti-jewishness every where, you are obviously paranoid. Also I am talking about american poll institutes. Empirical evidence from the horses mouth.
      -
      You deny you said this
      -
      “BTW, the world does not care.”
      -
      You fabricated and the UK official proved you wrong.

      Reply to Comment
    20. Prometheus

      Jack,
      “the occupation deny their right to create a state based on international law.”
      .
      Nonsense.
      .
      “Yes there is international law also basic human rights, that gives refugees the right to return to where they came from before the outbreak of the inicident.”
      .
      Not necessarily. Examples are multiple.
      .
      “No you havent read it “multiple times”, they call for a settlement meaning they have offered to reject international law and resolutions granting refugees right to return but again Israel rejected this offer.”
      .
      Yes I did. And unlike you I also understood what is written there.
      All Arab peace initiatives until present include the return of refugees as one of basic conditions.
      .
      “You see anti-jewishness every where, you are obviously paranoid.”.
      .
      Not everywhere, only where it is.
      .
      “Also I am talking about american poll institutes.”
      .
      American poll are of no interest.
      .
      “Empirical evidence from the horses mouth.”
      .
      what?
      .
      “You deny you said this
      -
      “BTW, the world does not care.”
      -
      You fabricated and the UK official proved you wrong.”"
      .
      ROFL.
      UK Official said that in 10 (TEN) years there MIGHT be a problem. You really have a problem with understating written texts.

      Reply to Comment
    21. Jack

      Prometherus,
      Israel rather keep the situation like it is than making peace based on international law, thats why they keep rejecing a solution to the conflict, thus no palestinian state could be established.
      -
      If you want to argue against international law go ahead, I just refering.
      -
      There are no Arab peace initiatives, there are an arab peace initiative from 2002. You are obviously confused. Read that offer and come back.
      -
      Thats called paranoia, when only you see things no one else can.
      -
      It wasnt an american poll, it was an american institute. You are obviously mad because you lack knowledge on this subject.
      Empirical evidence – facts. If you go to college you will learn this.
      -
      If you read the article the official say that there is a paradigm shift, I havent talked about a “problem”, you are reading in too much. Just chill.

      Reply to Comment
    22. Eran

      Guess what… there was no terror bombing inside coffee shops, childrens buses, shopping centers, etc. since the security wall started to build…

      so…”where do we go from here?”
      nowhere… keeping us secured and the TNT on the other side.

      simple as that.

      if they (arabs) could keep their “Shahids” restrained i promise you that this post could be fiction and no wall would ever been built.

      that was a simple equation:

      terror bombing + Jews = security wall + Arabs

      look at these (simple math):

      1) remove terror bombing and security wall:
      Jews = Arabs

      2) remove security wall:
      terror bombing – security wall = Arabs – Jews

      Reply to Comment
    23. Ignore the trolls – prometheus, Judeah, etc. – they are from planet Israel, floating in space.

      Reply to Comment
    24. The effort should be focused on exposing Israeli apartheid (not that it’s sort of hidden – it’s quite blatant) and mobilizing the international community to boycott and sanction Israel for its own good.

      Attempting to debate the Zionist trolls here is a waste of effort – you will never find common ground with them on anything. You’d have more luck convincing the Pope that there’s no God.

      Reply to Comment
    25. Just about in any projected future, you are going to go through increasing direct apartheid. Ami Ayalon admits as much, now advocating that all settlements east of the Wall (in a vague sense of “east”) be removed, with compensation, making the Wall the intitial boundary of a West Bank State; if not, he says, increasing apartheid is inevitable.
      .
      Alas, I think you are right that the Wall will proceed until real protest begins. I also think that a period of unrest under mounting apartheid control is inevitable. Ayalon says withdraw east from the Wall and act as if there is a quasi State on the other side. But, as long as the Palestinian Authority is funded via Israeli controlled tax transfers, there can be no State, merely bantu agency. Even Ayalon may be unwilling to risk the autonomy a Palestinain State would require.
      .
      All paths seem to lead to a defacto one State with three tiers of inhabitants–Israeli Jewish citizens, Arab Israeli citizens, and resident Palestinians. And that structure is not stable.
      .
      An impressive, willed, devoted series. It is my hope to see new creations by you on 972 and elsewhere; and my hope that in the face of massive refusal you continue on your way.

      Reply to Comment
    26. Jehudah

      “…all is clear and known…”, including to the author: that the security fence is not a wall, yet the author, view his readers as being fool, keeps referring to the security barrier as “wall”. This, Sir, is intentionally misleading!!
      P.S. And, I am yet to read the author acknowledging the fact that the fence has saved the lives of thousands…, unless, again, the author doesn’t think the lives of Jews amount to any achievement…!!

      Reply to Comment
    27. Jehudah

      “…exposing Israeli apartheid…”
      Sadly, for the poster, none exists but in the deeply rooted hostile mind of the poster towards the single out people, the Jewish people, and its sovereign liberal democratic nation-state of Israel.

      Reply to Comment
    28. Haggai Matar

      Jehudah – First, I mentioned the ratio of fence/wall in the first chapter (and I think I repeated it since). The Hebrew version of this series uses the word “fence”. In both Hebrew and English I made sure that whenever a specific part of the barrier is mentioned – the right term for that section will be used (i.e. “wall” for Bethlehem and Jerusalem, “fence” in Jayous, etc.). The different titles in Hebrew and English derive from the different ways the barrier is commonly talked about in both languages.

      As to the barrier’s saving lives – go back to the first and eleventh posts. They remind readers how suicide attacks have more or less stopped since it was built, but paint a bit of a more complex picture as to why this happened. And as mentioned above – to the extent that the barrier is meant to save live of Israeli citizens living in Israel, it could have done so much better on the Green Line.

      Reply to Comment
    29. Prometheus

      Ignore the paycheck activist – Ahad Haam.
      .
      “All paths seem to lead to a defacto one State with three tiers of inhabitants–Israeli Jewish citizens, Arab Israeli citizens, and resident Palestinians. And that structure is not stable.”
      .
      Now that’s funny. Why would someone be stupid enough to create a de-facto One State with additional tier of unneeded citizens?

      Reply to Comment
    30. The Zionist trolls here should be ignored. They do not read articles in order to learn, they are just here to spew their Zionist nonsense.

      For them, there is no apartheid, there is no occupation, there are no settlements, there is no ethnic cleansing, the land was empty when Jews came here, the Arabs are hostile because they are antisemites, etc.

      These people should not be addressed, just ignored, Hagai. Every word you write addressing them is a word wasted – that’s from everyone’s experience.

      Only boycott and sanctions will make the Zionists think about their evil ways and bring the end of Israel Apartheid.

      Reply to Comment
    31. Prometheus

      Ahad Haadam,
      I’m happy that was able to make you show off your single-mindedness and judeophobia.
      .
      1 – There is no apartheid – Israeli Arabs are subjected to the very same law as everyone else.
      2 – There is no occupation because in international law terms “occupation” means State A occupies (part of) State B.
      3 – Pure lie. No one ever said that there are no settlements.
      4 – No one ever denied that there was cleansing of hostile population
      5 – If the land was empty, that who had massacred Jews every few years throughout the end of 19th and the beginning of 20th century?
      6 – Arabs are hostile towards Jews because Arabs are only willing to see Jews as an inferior nation.
      .
      You are funny, you know? You are attempting to just ignore some 6 000 000 Israelis.
      Go on, keep denying us all and any rights. We are rather used to it. But you see, the problem is that rights are not granted – they are taken.

      Reply to Comment
    32. Jehudah Ben-Israel

      “The Zionist trolls” = The Jews whose historic, ethical and legal rights the poster can’t accept; indeed, despises.

      Reply to Comment
    33. Jan

      Jehudah – The apartheid wall is a land grab and you know it. Most people would have had no problem with the wall which, by the way, is longer than the odious Berlin Wall, had it been built entirely on the Green Line. But no, Israel wanted more and more land. Israel wanted to make life even more miserable for the Palestinians in hopes that they would give up and go away.

      But I have a clue for you, the Palestinians aren’t going anywhere unless you Israelis decide on the Final Solution – eradicating them from their lands.

      Reply to Comment
    34. Prometheus

      Jan,
      You apparently are not aware of the fact that the wall came as countermeasures to the Palestinian response to Barak’s peace initiative.
      .
      It’s only in your fantasy world Israel needs the Palestinian population residing in WB and Gaza to leave the area.

      Reply to Comment
    35. Strange, I just remembered some lines of a song from the sixties:

      Prometheus the problem child,
      still juggling with his brains
      Gives his limping leopard’s visions
      to the miser in his veins.

      Reply to Comment
    36. Barry Rosen

      Let us put this fence into perspective. The massive opposition to Israel’s erecting any security fence is coming from the very same people who have never had much to say about the mass murders of Israeli children and other civilians by Palestinian terrorists. The simple fact of the matter is that those screaming against Israel building a security fence, simply want the mass murders of Israelis to continue and escalate. They are quite simply in favor of the atrocities and endorse the terror. They would oppose anything Israel would do to fight the terror, and have always opposed all anti-terror measures. They want Israel to capitulate to the terror, not fight it.

      Israel is trying to prevent the mass murders of its civilians by Arab terrorist savages.

      The only way to suppress the carnage, is to erect security cages and not a security wall. Security cages would be rings of fences and walls around the large Palestinian cities. These would fence the Palestinians in, rather than fencing the Jews out. When the world bellyaches, Israel should simply respond: Look, people who behave like animals must be treated like animals and put behind cages until they learn to behave like humans. If the Palestinians ever abandon Islamofascism and nazi-like atrocities, then Israel may no longer need any fence.

      Reply to Comment
    37. Barry Rosen

      Jack learn some history.
      Israel existed 1500 years before Mohammad was born.
      The only thieves are the Arabs who stole the entire Mideast and North Africa in the 7th century.
      Arabs are invaders from Saudi Arabia.

      Reply to Comment
    38. Barry Rosen

      Israel existed 1500 years before Muhammad was born. Look at Islamic countries and look at Sharia laws. Its a brutal, violent and an intolerant religion. It produces the most inhumane people on this planet. Besides Saudi Arabia, the entire Middle East and North Africa was never Arab or Muslim. The thieving Arabs stole all the land from the Native peoples in the Mid East and North Africa in the 7th century and forced everyone they colonized to become Muslim. Anyone that didn’t convert, had there heads cut off. The Jews resisted Muhammad and didn’t convert.

      Israel is a democracy and has done everything in its power to bring peace and security to its citizens. If you want to look at real racist, aparthied, genocidal countries, just look at Saudi Arabia, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Egypt, Jordan. How many Jews live in these countries??? None!!! They are ethnically cleansed of Jews. How many Arabs live in Israel? 1.5 million. Facts speak louder than accusations.
      If you want to speak out against Racism you should criticize the Arabs aparthied policies against the Kurds, Coptics, Black Christians of Sudan, Berbers and Western Sahara.

      Reply to Comment
    39. Barry Rosen

      Ahad, when one looks at the many Arab atrocities that have been committed in recent history – you realize one thing. The Arab world is racist, sexist, poverty stricken, diseased, inbred, filled with religious hatred, ignorant, and celebrates mass murder of women and children. The Arabs have killed their own with guns, hangings, be-headings, chemical and biological weapons, electrified them, and tortured fellow Arabs to death. Arabs even kill there own woman if there raped or not virgins before they get married. (Honor Killings) Do these Arabs ever take responsiblity. I guess its far easier for the Arabs to blame everyone else for there failures.

      Reply to Comment
    40. Barry Rosen

      Ami Ayalon is the equivalent of Beilin and Sarid.

      Reply to Comment
    41. rsgengland

      The largest project ever undertaken in Israel was , and still is , the settlement of approximately 850000 Jewish refugees who fled , or were expelled from the Arab/Muslim lands across North Africa and the Middle East.
      These Jews were not forced to leave because they were Zionists , but because of the wave of antisemitism that flooded these areas after Israels establishment

      Reply to Comment
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