Participants on a Breaking the Silence tour of the old city of Hebron were greeted today with large banners in two different locations on Shuhada Street that proclaimed: “Palestine never existed! (and never will)”
Both banners appeared on sections of Shuada Street that Palestinians are banned from both walking or driving on. The restrictions on Palestinian access to the street began 20 years ago after American-born doctor and Israeli settler Baruch Goldstein walked into Hebron’s Al-Ibrahimi Mosque and opened fire with his military issued rifle, killing 29 Palestinian worshipers and injuring 125. The Israeli military’s response was a policy of separation between settlers and Palestinians on Hebron’s streets, resulting in a network of heavily guarded settler enclaves that punishes Palestinian neighbors with an accompanying matrix of checkpoints and restricted areas.