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Eviction in Beit Hanina: New site of East Jerusalem settlement

A family in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina has now joined the story of the families in Sheikh Jarrah, evicted from their home with the same legal tactics, in order to make way for a new Jewish settlement.

By Moriel Rothman

Beit Hanina – Wednesday morning, a Palestinian family of 11, the Natche family, was evicted from their home in Beit Hanina (Hebrew report). The legal process behind the eviction was launched by Aryeh King, the head of a group known as “The Israel Lands Fund.” Their claim to the property was based, like in the cases in Sheikh Jarrah, on land deeds held by Jews before 1948.

Last month, King and his group posted a notice looking for “strong men” to carry out this eviction. According to the notice, if the police did not carry out the eviction, “the Jews will do without the police.” In the end, “the Jews” (note: as a religious Jew myself, I am incensed by King’s collective language) did not have to do it themselves, and the police carried out the eviction.

Beit Hanina is a neighborhood in the north of East Jerusalem. Unlike the neighborhoods closer to the Old City, like  Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan, Beit Hanina has not been an epicenter of conflict between the settlers/state and the Palestinians. However, King and his Israel Lands Fund are looking to change that. According to a notice in the media in Hebrew, King and his group are planning a series of evictions in Beit Hanina, which they are calling “Nof Shimon,” as well as in Sheikh Jarrah, which they call “Shimon HaTzadik.”

The women of the family evicted from their home, Beit Hanina (Photo: Moriel Rothman)

The eviction itself was carried out early Wednesday morning by the police, who detained or arrested all of the male members of the Natche family, leaving only the mother, who is pregnant, and her daughters to watch as a rented moving company loaded all of the family’s belongings onto a truck and drove off. The settlers are expected to move into the Natche house as early as Wednesday evening.

Moriel Rothman is an American-Israeli currently living in Jerusalem and active with Rabbis for Human Rights and the Solidarity Movement.

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    1. Lauren

      Israel won’t be happy until it kills every last Arab, steals all the land, tosses out Christians and makes the Middle East Jews only.
      Israel doesn’t want peace…. it just wants to stall and cry victim while assaulting others and stealing as much land as they can. Israel never will do the right thing. I will never go to Israel and I will make a point of NOT buying anything made there.
      You would think that Israel during the Holocaust Remberance day would jar some brains into understanding that Jews are not the only victims in the world and treatment of others in the same cruel fashion as the Nazis brings no sympathy from people.

      Reply to Comment
    2. Kolumn9

      The residents failed to prove their ownership in court. They got evicted by the owner who has the ownership documents. This is a pretty basic ownership dispute. There are going to be many more cases like this as Arabs in East Jerusalem have been building on land they do not own for the past 50 years. Many don’t even bother denying it.

      Reply to Comment
    3. Kolumn9

      Lauren, Jews have used some brains to understand from the Holocaust that sympathy is worth about as much as sand in a desert. There will be peace once the Arabs accept the basic premise that Jews have a right to a homeland in Israel. In the meantime you are not really welcome, so feel free to stay home and good luck in trying to not buy anything developed, produced or invented in Israel. Really, good luck.

      Reply to Comment
    4. sh

      Kolumn9, even if the Arabs accept that basic premise, until Jews tell the world (and us other Jews – Israeli Jews at that – would be nice too) the dimensions of the homeland they have a right to, no-one in their right mind is going to believe people like you.
      Meanwhile the forging of documents, the rigging of evidence, the use of Ottoman laws and British Emergency Laws when the legal advisers of the likes of Aryeh King think they can pull another fast one, and the takeover of properties (by people who already have homes of their own) despite the fact that it tips people who were already refugees onto the streets once again, will continue unabated.
      Now about the holocaust, Kolumn9. If sympathy was worth about as much as sand in the desert, why do you think there were so many trees in memory of Righteous Gentiles at Yad Vashem that they had to put an end to planting new ones and carve the names of the rest into a wall erected there for that purpose instead?

      Reply to Comment
    5. Kolumn9

      Sh, once the Arabs accept the basic premise the dimensions can be worked out. It seems premature to start arguing over borders before the opponent accepts that he is ready to accept you under any borders.

      These are hardly fast ones. Most of these court cases go on for decades and in the end it is proven that the Arabs have no evidence whatsoever to back up their claims to ownership. In practice there is an outcry regardless of how much evidence is presented for the Jewish ownership of a house. There seems to be a persistent belief that in certain parts of the world Jews can’t take control of the land even if the Jews own the land, while at the same time Arabs need no proof of ownership to build anywhere.

      Apparently in your world the existence of thousands of people who saved Jews from certain death demonstrates that sympathy prevented the deaths of millions at the hands of their fellow citizens? I’ll take a nuke to defend myself over the sympathy of millions any day.

      Reply to Comment
    6. sh

      “It seems premature to start arguing over borders”
      Not to me it doesn’t. I’m not even asking for an argument, just a plain, simple declaration about the borders of the country I live in. We’ve never had one. We were supposed to have a constitution – there was even a deadline that fell well short of 1950 – in which, one supposes, we would have received at least a hint about where we end and our neighbors begin. Nary a sign of it even today. It’ll seem premature to people like you until it’s too late for everyone else.
      Let’s keep things plain and simple K9. I never had grandparents or aunts or uncles due to the holocaust but I know enough people who survived by being protected by people who risked their lives for them to be 100% certain I would prefer their sympathy over a nuke. And I reckon there are quite a few others like that in Israel. I just wish they’d open their mouths.

      Reply to Comment
    7. Jack

      This ethinc cleansing is nothing different from the apartheid rule in South Africa. Where blacks were cleansed so white people could take their places.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Mozes

      1,000 Arabs are living in Jewish area like Pisgat Zeev
      800 Arabs lives at Neve Yaacov, also a Jewish area.
      Why dont you write a article about that?

      Reply to Comment
    9. Kolumn9

      Sh, ok, how about we hereby declare that the borders of the country are the 1948 borders + Area C in the West Bank. Are the Palestinians are likely to accept such borders? No, probably not. Would the international community accept such a border? No, probably not. Perhaps declaring a border isn’t going to be possible until there is agreement on the demarcation of the border between Israel and the Palestinian state and no such agreement is possible until the Palestinians accept the basic premise of two states for two peoples.

      I am very happy that some of your relatives survived by being protected by people that risked their lives. All of my relatives that were in the Ukraine and Belarus when the Nazis invaded were killed. The only ones that survived were in the Red Army, deep in Soviet territory or were evacuated before the Nazis got to them to beyond the Urals because they worked in the arms industry. All the sympathy of both the locals who helped your relatives and of the world that looked on and did nothing mean less than nothing to me given how incredibly pitiful it was in comparison to the scale of the disaster.

      Reply to Comment
    10. Leen

      So, if we’re moving in people based on pre-1948, does that mean Palestinians can move back into their pre-1948 homes in WJeru, Galilee and other places?

      Wait of course not, we are talking about an ethnocracy here.

      Reply to Comment
    11. TN

      How can people, who seem to believe in God doing such wrong. Equality should go both ways..

      Reply to Comment
    12. AMAL

      Okay so if it is about ownership documents, can I go back to my grandparents house in Tiberias of which I have ownership papers and just have the zionists living their evicted? Again, of course not. I can’t even go into israel for that matter.
      Palestinian’s documents are of absolute no value, so how come Israeli documents can get people evicted from their RIGHTFULLY OWNED homes?!

      Reply to Comment
    13. sh

      “I am very happy that some of your relatives survived by being protected by people that risked their lives.”
      Huh K9? I just told you they didn’t, none of them. You must do your reading with your eyes closed as well.
      But my murdered relatives are not the whole story and neither are yours. And I refuse to dishonor the family I never got to know by accepting with equanimity the fact that refugees are being turfed out of their homes in their name; that my government permits individuals who never owned them to take possession of them using finagling, trickery and the money of millionaires who do not even live here. This is what is happening in Jerusalem. Open your eyes K9.

      Reply to Comment
    14. Safiyyah

      Where have the Jewish owners been for all these years? I find it ironic that Israel has an absentee land owner law for Palestinians, but not Jews.

      Reply to Comment
    15. Louna

      Let me tell you all what really happened hundreds of years before the Jews even existed.

      Canaanites and Alvengiwn were living in Palestine Syria and Lebanon
      But in particular the canaanites live in Palestine and they happen to the Palestinniens great great grand parents and it so much happens that they the first to step foot in Palestine.
      As for Jews and their right to live in Palestine because of their right to have a homeland for the Jewish then that means that any ethnic groupe can go to whichever country they want kick it’s inhabitants out and live in it
      Well Of course not because no one has the right to ,even the so called Jews in Palestine. Palestine is not a land without people for it to be occupied by ” Jews “

      Reply to Comment
    16. deloops.com

      This site really has all of the info I wanted about this
      subject and didn’t know who to ask.

      Reply to Comment
    17. Would you mind if I quote a small number of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back to your webpage:
      I’m going to aslo make certain to give you the proper anchor-text hyperlink using your blog title: Eviction in Beit Hanina: New site of East Jerusalem settlement | +972 Magazine. Be sure to let me know if this is ok with you. Thank you

      Reply to Comment