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Ahead of worst winter storm in years, IDF razes Palestinian homes

Palestinian children in Khirbat Yarze, where the IDF destroyed homes on Tuesday, December 10 2013 (Image: Attef Abu-Arub, B’Tselem)

The Middle East is experiencing one of the worst winter storms to hit the region in years. All almost all of the mountain ranges from Syria to Sinai are covered in snow and the coastal areas are seeing very large amounts of rainfall. State and local authorities throughout the region are working to bring homeless people into shelters and rescue those caught in the storm.

Yet on Tuesday, just as the storm was approaching, the Israeli army’s Civil Administration in the West Bank destroyed tents and shacks belonging to Palestinian families in the northern part of the Jordan Valley, leaving some 40 people – including at least 18 children – homeless.

The army has  denied building permits to = Palestinian farmers in the Jordan Valley for years, human rights organization B’Tselem reported. For some of the families at Khirbet Yarze, this is the second time their homes have been destroyed.

These photos were taken on Wednesday. Today (Friday) the Palestinian families were still there, living in tents provided by aid organizations. A person who visited them said that their most urgent concern was their livestock; farmers in the region have seen their animals die from the cold in the past few days and the army destroyed the shacks that protected the livestock in Khirbet Yarze.

A water tank demolished by the IDF in Khirbat Yarze (Image: Attef Abu-Arub, B’Tselem)

Destroyed Palestinain tents in Khirbet Yarze (Image: Attef Abu-Arub, B’Tselem)

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    1. I’m certain there was an overriding security interest. For someone. Somewhere. Sitting at a desk.

      Reply to Comment
      • Danny

        Of course. The Palestinians are a security concern by virtue of the fact that they breath.

        One day there will be a museum like Yad Vashem about Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. Israel, of course, will brand it anti-semitic.

        Reply to Comment
        • M. Sayed

          Danny, Are you sure you want to go down the road of comparing this to the holocaust?

          Reply to Comment
          • No, its not comparable to Shoah. But I came across a quote by a Native American woman (Muscogee Nation), Joy Harjo. Her book of poems How we became human, new and selected poems, 1975-2001, end with the postscript

            “All acts of kindness are lights in the war for justice.”

            This demolition could have been delayed at absolutely no costs to the State.

            Reply to Comment
    2. Wendy

      What we read above is sheer sadism. I agree with whomsoever said what we’ve done to the Palestinians will and is and should be documented.

      No, it is not the Shoah but it is racist, wrong and horribly enacted–and surely not in the spirit of Judaism as many of us learned it. We need to build Israelis to say this: What is being done in our name is wrong!

      Reply to Comment