Interim Israeli PM to use pre-Nakba villa as official residence

The villa was built by wealthy Palestinian businessman Hanna Salameh in the 1930s, who was forced to leave Palestine after Israel was created

July 11 2022

(Photo credit: Times of Israel)

ByNews Desk-

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh demanded this month that interim Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid hand over a villa built prior to the Palestinian catastrophe, or Nakba, of 1948.

Shtayyeh gave the order when it was revealed that the Israeli caretaker prime minister was planning on living there temporarily.

The Villa Salameh, as engraved on one of the walls, was built in the 1930s by Palestinian businessman Hanna Salameh.

Salameh was expelled from Palestine in 1948 upon the formation of the state of Israel, and lived in exile in Lebanon.

The luxurious home is located in the Talbieh neighborhood of West Jerusalem, which was built a century ago and was home to several residences built by wealthy Palestinian elites.

After the formation of Israel and the resulting Nakba, the dispossessed residents of the Talbieh neighborhood were forced out of Palestine by Israeli forces.

Two years later, the villa, along with many Palestinian homes in the area, was seized by Tel Aviv under the Absentee Property Law.

The Absentee Property Law was passed by the Israeli government in 1950, allowing it to seize the homes of Palestinians who were forced to both abandon their properties and leave their country.

Reportedly, Lapid has temporarily occupied the villa, as the official prime ministerial residence on Balfour Street in occupied West Jerusalem, which is near the villa, undergoes renovation.

On 4 July, during a meeting in Ramallah, Shtayyeh strongly condemned Israel’s continued violation of homes left behind by refugees, and called for the right of return for all Palestinians to their homeland under UN Resolution 194.

The takeover by the Israeli prime minister of a historic Palestinian home aligns with Tel Aviv’s official policy of seizing or destroying Palestinian homes, and forcibly evicting their residents.

In March this year, the Jerusalem Municipality declared its intention to annex 800 Palestinian homes in the neighborhood of Jabal al-Mukaber, in order to raze them and build a commercial center as well as 500 settlement units for Jewish residents.

On 12 June, a report by Land Research Center of the Arab Studies revealed that Israeli forces demolished at least 1,032 Palestinian buildings and homes in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in 2021.

The Nakba Is Ongoing, It Didn’t End In 1948

19 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen

Robert Inlakesh 

For us to simply classify the Nakba as a single historical event, would be an incorrect framing, as the collection of atrocities visited on the Palestinian people by the Zionist regime represents an ongoing attempt to solidify the dominance of “Israel’s” settler-colonial project.

If “Israel” had already completed its project, it would have declared its borders, it has never done this and is still in the process of carving itself a State out of the Levant

By now most people familiar with the Palestinian cause know well of the horrific ethnic cleansing campaign that took place between 1947-9, during the creation of the regime that calls itself “Israel”. Little however, know much about the ethnic cleansing ongoing today, or perhaps their knowledge is limited to isolated cases.

The Nakba, or ethnic cleansing of Palestine, is often defined as a historical event in which over half of Palestine’s villages, towns, and cities were destroyed, and 450 towns and villages depopulated of their Palestinian inhabitants, amounting to the forced ethnic displacement of around 800,000 people. The word Nakba means “catastrophe”, which is what is used to refer to that time, but when we speak of al-Nakba in English, what we are doing is using a term with which we refer to a historical event often meaning the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. 

Recently, Palestinian-American congresswoman, Rashida Tlaib, introduced a House Resolution which would see the United States government recognise the Palestinian Nakba. “This Sunday [Nakba Day] was a day of solemn remembrance of all the lives lost, families displaced, and neighborhoods destroyed during the violence and horror of the Nakba. The scars bourn by the close to 800,000 Palestinians who were forced from their family homes and their communities, and those killed are burned into the souls of the people who lived through the Nakba,” said Tlaib. Although this would certainly be a major achievement to gain such recognition of Palestinian suffering, in essence meaning that the US government would be admitting the historic crime that the Zionist terrorist forces committed prior to declaring themselves a State, it is important that we not disconnect the past from the present.

The goal of today’s Israeli regime is very much the same as it was back in 1947, to occupy as much land as possible, with as few Palestinians on it as possible. In order to achieve such a goal, the settler-colonial project has taken different forms and used various tactics over the past 74 years, yet that same goal remains intact. 

The 1950’s saw large-scale incursions into the Gaza Strip and the further displacement of more refugees during this process, whilst those Palestinians who remained inside what would become “Israel”, were kept under military rule. Often known as the 1948 Palestinians, who today have Israeli citizenships, this portion of the Palestinian population consists of many who were considered to be “present absentees” by the Israeli regime, which translates to; the people who fled their villages and remained in what became “Israel” but were refused their right to return to their original villages. Israel quickly made use of laws implemented by the British occupation regime in Palestine, like ‘Article 125 of the Defense (Emergency) Regulations’, which Israel used as a legal basis for making Palestinian villages “closed military zones”, hence preventing the displaced natives from returning to their houses. Israel also implemented the 1950 Absentee Property Law, which is broad in its definitive language and would be used to declare displaced Palestinians as “absentees” in order to steal their homes. Between 1948 and 1950, it is also believed that Israel ethnically cleansed a further 40,000 Bedouin Palestinians, whilst also destroying more Palestinian villages along the Lebanese border and expelling thousands more Palestinians until 1956.

In 1967, during what was called the ‘Naksa’ (setback), again the tactics slightly changed, Israel had decided to illegally occupy all of historic Palestine and even beyond, expelling 300,000 Palestinians from their homes in the process. In 1969, roughly 100,000 more were forced to flee villages around the Jordan Valley area after successive Israeli air raids and military assaults against both Palestinian and Jordanian villages. 

Without summing up all of the cases of ethnic cleansing throughout the 74 years of the Zionist regimes settler colonialist expansion, it suffices to say this, the very same tactics and laws are being used by “Israel” today to do the exact same thing they did in the past. 

In the Naqab, where the majority of Palestinian Bedouins live today, Israel is attempting to ghettoize the people there. This means forcing them into a small number of so-called “recognised villages” and ethnically cleansing some 40 unrecognized villages, this is a throwback to the suffering of the people of the Naqab during and after 1948, when Zionist forces rounded up the remaining 11,000 Bedouin’s – of a community that were 100,000 prior to 1948 – and forced them to live in an area called al-Siyaj, where they were under strict martial law rule until 1965. Israel is today using the Jewish National Fund to work on “agricultural projects”, similar to what occurred in 1948, in order to usurp the lands of Bedouins. 

In the West Bank, the largest portion of “Area C”, is considered to be where “closed military zones” are, meaning that Palestinians are forbidden from entering these areas. In Area C (60% of the West Bank) it is also near impossible for Palestinians to get a building permit to construct a new home. The plan to ethnically cleanse the 1,000 Palestinian residents of the village of Masafer Yatta is just the latest in a long line of plans to expel Palestinians from their villages in the West Bank. Nevertheless, Israeli illegal settlers are granted a near carte blanche to establish outposts and settlements wherever they please, despite the fact that even by Israeli law many of these outposts are illegal. Israel is also using the “Absentees Property Law” to ethnically cleanse Palestinians from their homes in East al-Quds today, as we see in Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah, in addition to areas in Haifa and Jaffa. 

I had the pleasure of working on producing a short documentary with Redfish, called ‘The Palestinian Nakba: In Memory and the Present’, in which we interviewed survivors of the 1948 Nakba, as well as Palestinians from the younger generations who are surviving it today. Unfortunately, this short documentary report has been censored in all corners of the internet. Due to Redfish – like many other platforms that report information from an alternative and critical perspective – having been booted off of Youtube and other social media platforms, the voices and stories of Palestinians are by proxy being silenced. It is this sort of content that attempts to portray the true story of the Nakba from a Palestinian perspective, yet the public are being robbed off this knowledge.

For us to simply classify the Nakba as a single historical event, would be an incorrect framing, as the collection of atrocities visited on the Palestinian people by the Zionist regime represents an ongoing attempt to solidify the dominance of “Israel’s” settler-colonial project. To say that the ethnic cleansing of Palestine was simply taking place around the time of 1948 would be, in a way, bowing to the Zionist concept that their “State” model won and that the Palestinians have already been defeated. The Palestinian resistance is most certainly not defeated, this is an ongoing struggle and an ongoing ethnic cleansing campaign, which fits into “Israel’s” settler-colonial ambitions. Naming one single event as The Nakba is correct, but when isolating the concept of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine to atrocities visited on Palestinians singularly during 1948, we begin to paint a different picture of what the true picture is.

Many of the same legal concepts, language, arguments, and tactics that were used to ethnically cleanse Palestine in 1947 are today being used to do the same thing and the examples of this are clear for all to see. This is an ongoing battle, one of a people – the Palestinians – who are fighting to expel an invading and occupying usurper entity – the Zionist regime. If “Israel” had already completed its project, it would have declared its borders, it has never done this and is still in the process of carving itself a State out of the Levant, therefore everything “Israel” is doing today is part of its expansionist mission and for it to stand as a ethno-supremacist “State” it must cement itself on all the land it illegally occupies. Israel has not achieved its goals and the Palestinians are not defeated, therefore the ethnic cleansing of Palestine only ends when one side wins.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Palestinian Legal Expert Reveals Israel’s Motives behind Sheikh Jarrah Evictions (VIDEO)

February 24, 2022

PDD hosted a discussion on Sheikh Jarrah with Palestinian legal expert Boudour Hassan. (Infographic: PDD, Supplied)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

“This is broad daylight theft, but it’s something that has been going on for decades.”, Palestinian writer and legal researcher Budour Hassan said in an interview with UK-based media platform Palestine Deep Dive (PDD) during a live show which was also streamed on The Palestine Chronicle Facebook page. 

Hassan, who works as a legal researcher at the Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center (JLAC), elaborated on the dire situation in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, where several Palestinian families, including the Salem family, face imminent forced ethnic displacement.

The discussion, hosted by Mark Seddon, a former journalist with Al Jazeera television and UN correspondent, focused on what is happening on the ground in Sheikh Jarrah. 

Hassan explained how Israel uses its internal law to unlawfully displace Palestinian families.

“The absentee property law, which was enacted by Israel in 1951, prohibits internally displaced Palestinian and Palestinian refugees who were uprooted from their land of ever trying to claim back their land,” Hassan said.

“So, a refugee family that was displaced in Jaffa in 1948, can’t come and say, ‘We have a land. We have documents. We have proof that we own this house in Jaffa. Let us go back to our house’,” she added.

Commenting on an Israeli court decision on February 22 to freeze the eviction of the Salem family, Hassan said that “freezing the eviction doesn’t mean canceling it, it only means that they have more time to think about an appropriate option when the time is more right to do it.”

Hassan asserted that Israel’s behavior in East Jerusalem is motivated by demographic objectives, which are part of a much larger Judaization scheme in the occupied Palestinian city.

“Right now Palestinians constitute 38% of the population in Jerusalem. So the objective was to reduce that percentage to less than 30% through the use of several methods, including forcible eviction, forcible displacement, demolitions, refusal to grant building permits,” she said.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Ten Things You Should Know about Amnesty International Report on Apartheid Israel

February 2, 2022

Amnesty slammed Israel for committing ‘the crime of apartheid’ in new report. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Romana Rubeo

On Tuesday, February 1, London-based international human rights group Amnesty International (AI) released an extraordinary report, which labels Israel an ‘apartheid state’. The report calls for Israel to be held accountable for its practices against Palestinians.

The 280-page document, entitled ‘Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians: Cruel System of Domination and Crime Against Humanity’, outlines how the Israeli state segregates and controls Palestinians in order to maintain Jewish hegemony.

Though to be fully appreciated, the AI document must be read in its entirety, below are the top ten points raised by the international human rights group.

1. What is Apartheid?

After defining “apartheid” as “a violation of public international law, a grave violation of internationally protected human rights and a crime against humanity under international criminal law”, Amnesty, in its report, describes Israel’s “intent to oppress and dominate Palestinians:

“Since its establishment in 1948, Israel has pursued an explicit policy of establishing and maintaining a Jewish demographic hegemony and maximizing its control over land to benefit Jewish Israelis while minimizing the number of Palestinians and restricting their rights and obstructing their ability to challenge this dispossession.”

2. Geographic Scope

According to Amnesty, the system of segregation “extended beyond the (so-called) Green Line to the West Bank and Gaza Strip, which (Israel) has occupied” in 1967. 

“Today, all territories controlled by Israel continue to be administered with the purpose of benefiting Jewish Israelis to the detriment of Palestinians, while Palestinian refugees continue to be excluded.”

“Although Israel’s system of apartheid manifests itself in different ways in the various areas under its effective control,” the report reads, “it consistently has the same purpose of oppressing and dominating Palestinians for the benefit of Jewish Israelis, who are privileged under Israeli civil law regardless of where they reside.” 

3. Treatment of Palestinians

Israel should be labeled an apartheid state because “Palestinians are treated by the Israeli state differently based on its consideration of them as having a racialized non-Jewish, Arab status”.

4. Territorial Fragmentation, Segregation, Jewish Settlements

Starting in 1948, Israel pursued a policy of territorial fragmentation and legal segregation, Amnesty said in its report. 

“(Israel) chose to coerce Palestinians into enclaves within the State of Israel and, following their military occupation in 1967, the West Bank and Gaza Strip. They have appropriated the vast majority of Palestinians’ land and natural resources. They have introduced laws, policies and practices that systematically and cruelly discriminate against Palestinians, leaving them fragmented geographically and politically, in a constant state of fear and insecurity, and often impoverished.”

“Meanwhile, Israel’s leaders have opted to systemically privilege Jewish citizens in law and in practice through the distribution of land and resources, resulting in their relative wealth and well-being at the expense of Palestinians. They have steadily expanded Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinian territory in violation of international law,” the report adds.

5. Legal Segregation

Amnesty describes the way “Israel has used military rule as a key tool to establish its system of oppression and domination over Palestinians across both sides of the Green Line, applying it over different groups of Palestinians in Israel and the OPT almost continuously since 1948”.

“Israel maintains its system of fragmentation and segregation through different legal regimes that ensure the denial of nationality and status to Palestinians, violate their right to family unification and return to their country and their homes, and severely restrict freedom of movement based on legal status.”

6. Restrictions of Movement and Apartheid Wall

Amnesty denounces the closure system imposed on Palestinians within the Occupied Territories and between the OPT and Israel, “gradually subjecting millions of Palestinians who live in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip to ever more stringent restrictions on movement based on their legal status. These restrictions are another tool through which Israel segregates Palestinians into separate enclaves, isolates them from each other and the world, and ultimately enforces its domination.”

Moreover, the report highlights how “the 700km fence/wall, which Israel continues building mostly illegally on Palestinian land inside the occupied West Bank, has isolated 38 Palestinian localities in the West Bank (…) and has trapped them in enclaves known as ‘seam zones’”.

7. Political Rights

According to Amnesty, “Israel’s version of democracy overwhelmingly privileges political participation by Jewish Israelis.”

“Limitations on the right of Palestinian citizens of Israel to participate in elections are accompanied by other infringements of their civil and political rights that limit the extent to which they can participate in the political and social life of Israel. This has included racialized policing of protests, mass arbitrary arrests and the use of unlawful force against protesters during demonstrations against Israeli repression in both Israel and the OPT.” 

8. Dispossession of Palestinian Land

Amnesty illustrates how, since its creation on the ruins of Palestinian towns and villages, “the Israeli state has enforced massive and cruel land seizures to dispossess and exclude Palestinians from their land and homes.”

Suffice it to say, “in 1948, Jewish individuals and institutions owned around 6.5% of Mandate Palestine, while Palestinians owned about 90% of the privately owned land there. Within just over 70 years the situation has been reversed.”

Amnesty also mentions Israeli laws and regulations currently implemented by Israeli authorities to carry out demolitions of Palestinian property in East Jerusalem, including the Absentees’ Property Law of 1950 and the Administrative Matters Law.

“In Israel and East Jerusalem, (the Israeli government) transferred from the state to Jewish national organizations and institutions, many of which serve Jews only, while the legal title of the land remained in the state’s name.”

9. Crimes against Humanity

Amnesty’s report analyzes three major categories of crimes against humanity, that’s to say, the “inhuman and inhumane acts as proscribed, respectively, by the Apartheid Convention and the Rome Statute”.

First, it condemns the forcible transfer of Palestinians, explaining that, “since 1948, Israel has demolished tens of thousands of Palestinian homes and other properties across all areas under its jurisdiction and effective control.”

Second, the report addresses the issues of administrative detention, torture and other ill-treatment.

“Israel’s systematic use (of the administrative detention) against Palestinians indicates that it is used to persecute Palestinians, rather than as an extraordinary and selective security measure.” 

The report also illustrates how “Israeli courts have admitted evidence obtained through torture of Palestinians, accepting the justification of ‘necessity’. Prompt, thorough and impartial investigations by Israeli authorities into allegations by Palestinians that they have been tortured are extremely rare, effectively giving state endorsement to the crime of torture.”

Third, Amnesty strongly condemns Israel’s unlawful killings and injuries, which were “perpetrated outside the context of armed conflict during Israeli law enforcement activities in the OPT, including during the suppression of protests, arrest raids, when enforcing travel and movement restrictions, and conducting house and search operations.”

10. Recommendations

Amnesty states in its report that “dismantling this cruel system of apartheid is essential for the millions of Palestinians who continue to live in Israel and the OPT, as well as for the return of Palestinian refugees who remain displaced in neighbouring countries”.

Also, it urges the need for “the international community to urgently and drastically change its approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and recognize the full extent of the crimes that Israel perpetrates against the Palestinian people.”

Amnesty directly calls on “the USA, the European Union and its member states and the UK” to “recognize that Israel is committing the crime of apartheid and other international crimes, and use all political and diplomatic tools to ensure Israeli authorities implement the recommendations outlined in this report and review any cooperation and activities with Israel to ensure that these do not contribute to maintaining the system of apartheid”.

Finally, Amnesty calls on the International Criminal Court (ICC) “to consider the applicability of the crime against humanity of apartheid within its current formal investigation,” and on the United Nations Security Council to “impose targeted sanctions, such as asset freezes, against Israeli officials most implicated in the crime of apartheid, and a comprehensive arms embargo on Israel.”

(Read the full report here: Amnesty International – Apartheid Israel)

(The Palestine Chronicle)

– Romana Rubeo is an Italian writer and the managing editor of The Palestine Chronicle. Her articles appeared in many online newspapers and academic journals. She holds a Master’s Degree in Foreign Languages and Literature and specializes in audio-visual and journalism translation.

Apartheid from the Sea to the River

By Jeremy Salt


BTselem apartheid Israel Palestine Latuff 46b11

B’Tselem’s description of Israel an apartheid state is valuable because B’Tselem, Israel’s leading human rights organization, is saying it.  Otherwise, the reaction should be of course it is. B’Tselem applies the word to all of Palestine and not just the remaining territories seized in 1967.  Again, of course it should.  Structural discrimination against the Palestinians is built into every level of government except elections,  which allows Israel repeatedly to tell the world that it is the only democracy in the Middle East, as if the ballot box is the only measure of democracy, blurring the reality unless people take a close look.

Israel and the policy of apartheid were born in the same year, 1948,  Israel as a colonial-settler declared unilaterally over occupied Palestine on May 15 and apartheid as the election-winning policy of South Africa’s National Party on May 26. On December 9 the same year, the UN General Assemby adopted the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.  

The convention describes genocide as acts intended to destroy “in whole or part” a national,  ethnical, racial or religious group.   There is no other way to describe Israel’s intentions in 1948.  Hundreds of Palestinian villages were razed and about 800,000 people driven out of their native land to make way for European settlers.   As for why they had to go there are two reasons:   they were not Jews,  and they were living in a land the zionists wanted to turn into a Jewish state.   

The occupation of the rest of Palestine in 1967 and the military, economic and pseudo-legal weapons used to suffocate the Palestinians in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem ever since are no more than an extension of what began in 1948.

B’tselem’s declaration revives the debate over whether zionism is a ‘racist’ ideology.  For the victims of racism in other colonized countries,  of course it is. Only in the imperial ‘west,’ with its own long history of racism, occupation and massacre, could the question even arise. 

In fact, racism has been in zionism’s DNA ever since Herzl talked of “spiriting” the Palestians out of their land to make way for a Jewish state.   How to get rid of them was the central consideration of the Zionist planners who followed him.

Everything evil committed against the Palestinians since 1948 speaks to the historical racism of the zionist enterprise.  You don’t treat people with the brutality that has accompanied the zionist march through history if you think they have the same rights as you do. Your soldiers, police and settlers do not kill or massacre people if they think they have the same right to life as they do.

Your state doesn’t create different laws and different rights if it thinks all people should have the same rights and live under the same laws. The state does not give a false right of return to Jews wherever they live and deny the genuine right of return of Palestinians. The state does not declare that the state is the state of the Jewish people and not the state of  its citizens,  Jewish or not.  

On November 10, 1975, the UN General Assembly passed resolution 3379,  describing zionism “as a form of racism and racial discrimination.” The word ‘race’ has no basis in science but everyone knows what it means in practice:   discrimination against specific groups on the basis of religion, ethnicity or skin color.  The Israeli ambassador,  Chaim Herzog,  was so enraged when the resolution was passed (72-35 with 32 abstentions) that he tore up his printout.

The passage of this resolution led to an immediate counter-attack by Israel, supported by the US and other governments.   As always, the bludgeon used was anti-semitism, with the US, from behind the scenes, prodding governments that had voted for the resolution to change their minds.  The tactics worked. On December 16,1991, the General Assembly revoked the resolution in resolution 46/86, passed 111-25 with 13 abstentions and 15 absentees.

Daniel Moynihan, the US ambassador at the UN and a zionist diehard, commented before 3379 was revoked that the UN “is about to make anti-semitism international law.” Of course, the resolution had nothing to do with anti-semitism but was born of the growing need to expose the ideology of a state which even by then had wrought massive destruction in the Middle East.

On the basis of  the commitments it had made to respect UN principles,   Israel was accepted as a UN member (Resolution 273, May 11, 1949), the General Assembly having resolved  that Israel “is a peace-loving State which accepts the obligations contained in the charter and is able and willing to carry  out those obligations.”  The next day it signed a protocol accepting resolution 194 (III) of 1948, setting out the basic rights of the Palestinians, including the right of return to their homeland, and the preservation of their property.

Nothing could have been further from the truth. Even at the time Israel was not “peace loving”: in hindsight the phrase is grotesque.  Neither did Israel have any intention of abiding by the commitments it had made to the Palestinians whom it had ethnically cleansed.  They would never be allowed to return. 

As for their property,  Israel was asked to suspend its ‘’Emergency Applications on Absentee Property’’ until a final peace settlement could be reached.  It responded that the so-called “custodian of absentee property” was acting only as a trustee for the owners,  “whose property is being administered in their interests.” 

This was a blatant lie. The “absentee property” was already being distributed among settlers old and new. It included village and town houses and a mass of agricultural land which had Chaim Weizmann, the state’s first president, in absolute raptures.  So much of it, and all of it acquired at absolutely no cost:

“ … about five million dunums of land [1.235 million acres] at least which could be taken under the plough almost at once,  but we have not yet got the people. In the district between Ramleh and Latrun there are about two milion dunums of the best land in Palestine for which, if we had to buy it, we would have to pay at least LP [Palestine pounds] per dunum and as you know, one could never buy land between Ramleh and Latrun. Now it is all free, overgrown with weeds and it is very doubtful whether the Arabs will ever come back to work it. Eveybody seems to think they have gone for good.”

This master dissembler knew perfectly well that Israel had no intention of allowing  ‘the Arabs’ back,  and as for a land “overgrown with weeds,” it was fertile and intensively worked by Palestinian farmers.

Everything the owners of “absentee property” had left behind was destroyed or stolen, down to furniture and small household items. The houses left standing were handed over to settlers,  senior zionist figures taking some of the best for themselves. 

An additional category was added to the list of absentees. These were the “present absentees” who fled from one part of Palestine to another during the fighting.   They were not allowed back to their original place of residence and their property was stolen too.

The lies told by Israel to secure UN membership were followed by the serial violations of Palestinian rights and international law along the spectrum of human rights which have continued to the present day. 

This being the case,  the rules of the club should surely prevail.  Anyone who joins a club and refuses to abide by the rules is usually warned once, warned twice,  suspended on the third offence and then thrown out if it still ignores the conditions of membership.  

Israel was admitted to the club on the basis of a false application.  It then refused to obey the rules, not once, twice or thrice but thousands of times but is still allowed to remain a member. 

Without the protection of the US, the UN General Assembly almost certainly would have voted for suspension of Israel decades ago and then ejection if it still refused to comply.   Thanks to the US, however, not only does  Israel remain a member but it is never punished for its crimes.

Noam Chomsky has described Israeli apartheid as “much worse” than South African apartheid. On the basis of the number of people who have died as a result of Israel’s racist policies, there is actually no comparison.

Under an apartheid government,  South African police, soldiers and white settlers beat, tortured and killed Africans.  Israeli police, soldiers and settlers do the same to Palestinians but whereas the worst state massacres in apartheid South Africa were Sharpeville (March 21, 1960), when police killed 69 people and wounded 180 others demonstrating against the pass laws,  and Soweto (June 16, 1976),  when at least 176 students (estimates are as high as 700) demonstrating against having to learn Afrikaans were killed,  the victims of Israel’s massacres run into the tens of thousands. 

This state of affairs will continue as long as the “international community” refuses to punish Israel for violation of the laws it has passed to protect human rights and preserve global peace.  Such punishment would be imposed through suspension from the UN and the suspension by governments of diplomatic and trade relations with Israel, but as long as it does not have to pay for its crimes and its contempt for international law it will see no reason to change.   As long as it refuses to change, it will remain a threat to Middle Eastern regional and global peace.

Israel’s Jewish National Fund Is Uprooting Palestinians – Not Planting Trees

By Jonathan Cook
Source: Jonathan Cook

The Jewish National Fund, established more than 100 years ago, is perhaps the most venerable of the international Zionist organisations. Its recent honorary patrons have included prime ministers, and it advises UN forums on forestry and conservation issues.

It is also recognised as a charity in dozens of western states. Generations of Jewish families, and others, have contributed to its fundraising programmes, learning as children to drop saved pennies into its trademark blue boxes to help plant a tree.

And yet its work over many decades has been driven by one main goal: to evict Palestinians from their homeland. 

The JNF is a thriving relic of Europe’s colonial past, even if today it wears the garb of an environmental charity. As recent events show, ethnic cleansing is still what it excels at.

The organisation’s mission began before the state of Israel was even born. Under British protection, the JNF bought up tracts of fertile land in what was then historic Palestine. It typically used force to dispossess Palestinian sharecroppers whose families had worked the land for centuries.

But the JNF’s expulsion activities did not end in 1948, when Israel was established through a bloody war on the ruins of the Palestinians’ homeland – an event Palestinians call the Nakba, or catastrophe.

Israel hurriedly demolished more than 500 cleansed Palestinian villages, and the JNF was entrusted with the job of preventing some 750,000 refugees from returning. It did so by planting forests over both the ruined homes, making it impossible to rebuild them, and village lands to stop them being farmed.

These plantations were how the JNF earned its international reputation. Its forestry operations were lauded for stopping soil erosion, reclaiming land and now tackling the climate crisis.

But even this expertise – gained through enforcing war crimes – was undeserved. Environmentalists say the dark canopies of trees it has planted in arid regions such as the Negev, in Israel’s south, absorb heat unlike the unforested, light-coloured soil. Short of water, the slow-growing trees capture little carbon. Native species of brush and animals, meanwhile, have been harmed.

These pine forests – the JNF has planted some 250 million trees – have also turned into a major fire hazard. Most years hundreds of fires break out after summer droughts exacerbated by climate change.

Early on, the vulnerability of the JNF’s saplings was used as a pretext to outlaw the herding of native black goats. Recently the goats, which clear undergrowth, had to be reintroduced to prevent the fires. But the goats’ slaughter had already served its purpose, forcing Bedouin Palestinians to abandon their pastoral way of life.

Despite surviving the Nakba, thousands of Bedouin in the Negev were covertly expelled to Egypt or the West Bank in Israel’s early years.

It would be wrong, however, to imagine that the JNF’s troubling role in these evictions was of only historical interest. The charity, Israel’s largest private land owner, is actively expelling Palestinians to this day.

In recent weeks, solidarity activists have been desperately trying to prevent the eviction of a Palestinian family, the Sumarins, from their home in occupied East Jerusalem to make way for Jewish settlers.

Last month the Sumarins lost a 30-year legal battle waged by the JNF, which was secretly sold their home in the late 1980s by the Israeli state.

The family’s property was seized – in violation of international law – under a draconian 1950 piece of legislation declaring Palestinian refugees of the Nakba “absent”, so that they could not reclaim their land inside the new state of Israel.

The Israeli courts have decreed that the Absentee Property Law can be applied outside Israel’s recognised territory too, in occupied Jerusalem. In the Sumarins’ case, it appears not to matter that the family was never actually “absent”. The JNF is permitted to evict the 18 family members next month. To add insult to injury, they will have to pay damages to the JNF.

A former US board member, Seth Morrison, resigned in protest in 2011 at the JNF’s role in such evictions, accusing it of working with extreme settler groups. Last year the JNF ousted a family in similar circumstances near Bethlehem. Days later settlers moved on to the land.

Ir Amim, an Israeli human rights group focusing on Jerusalem, warned that these cases create a dangerous legal precedent if Israel carries out its promise to annex West Bank territory. It could rapidly expand the number of Palestinians classified as “absentees”.

But the JNF never lost its love of the humble tree as the most effective – and veiled – tool of ethnic cleansing. And it is once again using forests as a weapon against the fifth of Israel’s population who are Palestinian, survivors of the Nakba.

Earlier this year it unveiled its “Relocation Israel 2040” project. The plan is intended to “bring about an in-depth demographic change of an entire country” – what was once sinisterly called “Judaisation”. The aim is to attract 1.5 million Jews to Israel, especially to the Negev, over the next 20 years.

As in Israel’s first years, forests will be vital to success. The JNF is preparing to plant trees on an area of 40 sq km belonging to Bedouin communities that survived earlier expulsions. Under the cover of environmentalism, many thousands of Bedouin could be deemed “trespassers”.

The Bedouin have been in legal dispute with the Israeli state for decades over ownership of their lands. This month in an interview with the Jerusalem Post newspaper, Daniel Atar, the JNF’s global head, urged Jews once again to drop money into its boxes. He warned that Jews could be dissuaded from coming to the Negev by its reputation for “agricultural crimes” – coded reference to Bedouin who have tried to hold on to their pastoral way of life.

Trees promise both to turn the semi-arid region greener and to clear “unsightly” Bedouin off their ancestral lands. Using the JNF’s original colonial language of “making the desert bloom”, Atar said his organisation would make “the wilderness flourish”.

The Bedouin understand the fate likely to befall them. In a protest last month they carried banners: “No expulsions, no displacement.”

After all, Palestinians have suffered forced displacement at the JNF’s hands for more than a century, while watching it win plaudits from around the world for its work in improving the “environment”.

في ذكرى النكبة!!! يا صهاينة الداخل العربيّ: فلسطين اغتُصَبت ولم تُبَعْ!!!

د.عدنان منصور

خلال الأشهر الأخيرة، روّجت بشكل مثير ومدروس، حملة واسعة، صدرت عن شخصيات سياسية مسؤولة وغير مسؤولة، وعن جهات إعلامية، وفنية، وجامعية، ودينية، وغيرها، في أنحاء عديدة من العالم العربي، تهدف الى تشويه القضية الفلسطينية من اساسها، وتسيء مباشرة وبالصميم، إلى قضية وسمعة ونضال ومقاومة الشعب الفلسطيني، وتجميل وتظريف صورة الصهاينة المحتلين، وقلب الحقائق التاريخية، رأساً على عقب، وإظهار اليهود على أنهم المغبونون والمعتدى عليهم، ويجب الاعتراف بحقهم في امتلاك فلسطين..

.. يأتي هذا، مع ما يرافق من إساءة متعمدة للفلسطينيين ولأمتهم كلها وقضيتهم، من خلال اتهامهم زوراً، من انهم باعوا ارضهم الفلسطينية الى اليهود، وبالتالي لا يحق لمن يبيع أرضه، ان يسترجعها من جديد !!!!

صهاينة وعربان الداخل العربي، أصبحوا اليوم، حماة الصهيونية و”اسرائيل”، والناطقين باسمها، والمدافعين عن احتلالها ووجودها، على حساب أبناء جلدتهم وامتهم، والواقفين في وجه المقاومين من اجل استرداد ارضهم وحقوقهم المشروعة.

هو الرابع عشر من أيار، يدون ويحدث عن نفسه. ويؤرّخ عما قبله وبعده، علّ الخونة والمرتدّين، والعملاء والمطبعين، من صهاينة الداخل، يزيلوا الغشاوة عن بصيرتهم النائمة المحنطة، ويعوا حقيقة ما جرى من احداث، ومجازر، وعمليات إبادة جماعية، وقتل ونهب، لم ينكرها الصهاينة، ولا المؤرخون الجدد، امثال ايلان باب Ilan Pappe، وبني موريس وغيرهما.

إن قرار تقسيم فلسطين عام 1947، رمى الى تأسيس دولة يهودية مساحتها 14100 كلم2، وتضم 558000 يهودي، بالإضافة الى 405000 عربي فلسطيني. ودولة عربية مساحتها 11500 كلم2 تضم 80 الف عربي، وعشرة آلاف يهودي. كما حدد القرار منطقة دولية، تضم الاماكن المقدسة، كالقدس وبين لحم، وفيها 105000 عربي، بالإضافة الى مئة الف يهودي.

قرار التقسيم هذا، تبعته اعمال إرهابية، وجرائم ومجازر رهيبة، ارتكبتها العصابات الإرهابية الصهيونية، في أنحاء عديدة من فلسطين، قبيل اعلان الدولة الاسرائيلية. اذ شنت عصابات شتيرن العسكرية، والارغون تسفاي ليومي، حملات منظمة على القرى العربية، بغية ترويع اهلها، وإجبارهم على تركها بالقوة، والتخلي عنها لليهود.

لقد رسمت المنظمات اليهودية الإرهابية، خطة محكمة، وقامت بتنفيذها بنجاح وبدقة متناهية، حتى إذا حلّ منتصف أيار 1948، وهو تاريخ اعلان قيام دولة الاحتلال الاسرائيلية، كان نصف مليون من العرب الفلسطينيين، الهاربين من المجازر والمذابح، يلجأون الى البلدان العربية المجاورة. صحيفة Hamashkif الناطقة باسم المنظمة الإرهابية شتيرن، والتي كان يقودها مناحيم بغين، كشفت عن خطة المذابح التي نفذت، حيث ذكرت ان خطط المنظمة عرضت على القيادة العسكرية اليهودية، وحظيت بموافقتها..

كانت قرية دير ياسين، بداية حلقة المجازر الرهيبة، حيث حصدت الدبابات العشرات من المدنيين، وقام الإرهابيون ببقر بطون الحوامل، وتقطيع الاطفال امام أعين آبائهم. وحول هذه المجزرة الفظيعة، نشرت الجريدة الناطقة باسم منظمة شتيرن، افتتاحية جاء فيها: “إن كل امرئ يعرف ان الهجوم على دير ياسين هو الذي ألقى الرعب في قلوب الجماعات العربية، وأدى الى فرارها المذعور.. هو المعجزة المباركة التي قوت عزائمنا، وأنزلت بالعدو ضربة اعظم بكثير، مما كان يمكن لحكمة جميع قادة الهاجانا مجتمعة أن تصنعه… ونحن نرجو ان لا تُذرف دموع التماسيح بعد اليوم على فظائع دير ياسين!!!

مناحيم بغين زعيم المنظمة الإرهابية الارغون، الذي اصبح في ما بعد رئيساً للوزراء، وحاملا جائزة نويل للسلام(!!!!) صرح معقباً على مجزرة دير ياسين: “إن هذه المجزرة لم تكن مبررة فقط، بل ودون النصر في دير ياسين، لما كانت هناك دولة اسرائيل”!!! وقال ايضاً: “انتم الاسرائيليون، عليكم ان لا تبدوا تسامحاً، وان لا تشعروا بأي شفقة، طالما لم نقض تماماً على ما يسمّى بالثقافة العربية… إن قوة التقدم في تاريخ العالم، هي للسيف. نحن نحارب، إذن نحن نكون.

قبيل إعلان دولة “اسرائيل” في 14 أيار 1948، قامت العصابات الصهيونية بطرد العرب الفلسطينيين من قراهم وبلداتهم، وكانت تحل مكانهم المستوطنين الجدد. وعند اعلان الدولة، اعتبرت “اسرائيل”، ان كل فلسطيني ترك منزله قبل الاول من ٱب 1948، يعتبر بحكم الغائب. وبموجب هذا القرار، صادرت “اسرائيل” ثلثي الأراضي التي كانت للفلسطينيين.

المؤرخ الإسرائيلي ايلان باب، تناول بوضوح في كتابه “التطهير العرقي لفلسطين» Le nettoyage ethnique de la Palestine، حيث ذكر انه في 11 آذار 1948 وقبل شهرين من اعلان الدولة الاسرائيلية، وضع مخطط داليت Daleth، حيث تم بموجبه، تهجير ثلاثمئة ألف فلسطيني، اي نصف السكان الأصليين من بيوتهم واراضيهم… كما تم تدمير531 قرية وإخلاء 11 منطقة من سكانها.

كان الفلسطينيون يمتلكون 92 بالمئة من مساحة “اسرائيل” اليوم. كما ان سكان المدن والقرى المهجورة، كانوا يمثلون 85 بالمئة من مجموع السكان الموجودين في الأراضي التي هجّروا منها. وعند تأسيس الدولة، لم يصمد سوى 92 قرية، ومئة وخمسين ألف فلسطيني بقوا تحت نير دولة الاحتلال.

استمرت العمليات العسكرية بعد 14 أيار 1948، اذ نفذت “اسرائيل” حملة عسكرية واسعة، عرفت بعملية “داني”، ادت الى احتلال اللد والرملة وإخلائها من السكان العرب. كما نفذت عمليات عسكرية اخرى، أسفرت عن احتلال بئر السبع واشدود، وإفراغها بالكامل من السكان العرب.

اما عملية حيرام، فقد أدت الى اجتياح منطقة الجليل، وتهجير ستين الف فلسطيني، تركوا ديارهم متوجهين الى لبنان. ولم يبق في جيب الجليل، سوى 12 ألف فلسطيني، غالبيتهم من الدروز والشركس والمسيحيين.

لم تتوقف عمليات التطهير عند هذا الحد، بل قامت القوات الصهيونية بتنفيذ عملية تطهير على حدود دولة الاحتلال، حيث جرت حوادث عنيفة، ما دفع بـ”إسرائيل” الى مسح عدد من القرى العربية الواقعة ضمن شريط حدودي، يتراوح عرضه بين 5 و 15 كلم، من أجل إقامة منطقة خالية من السكان العرب. وبناء على ذلك، قامت القوات الإسرائيلية بتهجير سكان هذه القرى، الذين لجأوا الى الداخل اللبناني ومن هذه القرى، ترشيحا ومعليا في الجليل الأعلى، والجاعونة والخصاص والقبطية، في محافظة صفد.

هكذا تأسست دولة الاحتلال الاسرائيلية، على حساب شعب فلسطين وأرضه. المؤرخ الإسرائيلي بني موريس، في كتابه “ولادة مشكلة اللاجئين الفلسطينيين” الصادر عام 1987، ومعه السياسي الإسرائيلي، اسرائيل شاحاك، يؤكدان أن عدد المدن والقرى العربية التي دمرتها القوات الصهيونية، بلغ بين 350 و 383 مدينة وقرية. اما المؤرخ سلمان أبو سته، وبعد دراسة مستفيضة وموثقة، والتي تعتبر من اهم الدراسات المعمقة في هذا المجال، فيؤكد أن عدد المدن والقرى الفلسطينية المدمرة بلغ 566 قرية ومدينة.

وماذا بعد؟!!!!

في 14 أيار 2020، نقول بصوت عالٍ، لكل الخونة والعملاء والمأجورين، والمتصهينين، والمهرولين باتجاه العدو الغاصب، القاتل المحتل، ولكل منافق متخاذل أفاك… للسياسي المسؤول وغير المسؤول، الملوث بفكره المنحرف… للإعلامي المرتزق المروّج للتطبيع والمدافع عنه…. للفنان الانتهازي الذي ابتعد عن قضيته، من اجل حفنة من المال والشهرة… للأستاذ الجامعي المشبع بالكراهية والحقد تجاه فلسطين والفلسطينيين… “ “للمحلل الاستراتيجي “الفذ”، المرتهن للعدو وأولياء نعمته…. “للمفكر” المدعي اللاهث وراء المنافع والمكرمات… للحزبي المتقلب المتذبذب الذي يميل مع كل ريح… لرجال الدين الذين باعوا دينهم بالمنصب والدينار، من اجل تبخير الحاكم والمسؤول، والدفاع عن سياساته التطبيعية مع العدو، بفتاوى رخيصة مقززة بعيدة كل البعد عن الدين والايمان والشرف والضمير والكرامة…. الى كل هؤلاء وغيرهم مَن هم على شاكلتهم، نصرخ في وجوههم القذرة ونقول: فلسطين لم ولن تباع… ولم يبعْها شعبها… واذا كانت العصابات الصهيونية المسلحة، قد هجرت الشعب العربي الفلسطيني، ودمّرت مدنه وقراه، واستولت على ارضه، فإن الاحتلال لن يقضي على عروبة فلسطين، ولن ينال من مقاومة شعبها، ومقاومة الأحرار في منطقتها، ولن يقضي على عزيمته في استرجاع أرضه وحقوقه المشروعة، مهما طال الزمن، وأن وقف بجانب المحتل الإسرائيلي، شذاذ الآفاق من الخوارج والمنحرفين عن قضية فلسطين، صهاينة الداخل العربي!!

OCHA: 10% increase in israeli (apartheid state) demolition of Palestinian structures in 2018

OSCHA: 10% increase in Israeli demolition of Palestinian structures in 2018

Ma’an – January 20, 2019

BETHLEHEM – During 2018, Israel demolished or seized 460 Palestinian-owned structures in the West Bank, a 10% increase compared to 2017, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territory confirmed in a new report.

The OCHA report stated, “While in Area C, which makes over 60% of the area of the West Bank that is under full Israeli military control, the number of structures targeted in both years was approximately the same and stood at 270, occupied East Jerusalem recorded a 25% increase compared to 2017. Of all structures targeted during 2018, 56 were donor-funded humanitarian aid structures, representing a 46% decline, compared to 2017 figures.”

In December, said OCHA’s monthly report on West Bank demolitions and displacement, “39 Palestinian-owned structures were demolished or seized by the Israeli authorities, the same as the 2018 monthly average, displacing 56 people and affecting over 270 others.”

OCHA added that two of this month’s demolitions were on punitive grounds and the rest were due to the lack of the difficult-to-obtain Israeli building permits.

The report confirmed that “about 70% of the structures targeted this month were in Area C. The largest incident took place on December 4th in the Beit Hanina – al-Marwaha neighborhood, a community on the ‘Jerusalem side’ of the wall barrier, where eight commercial structures were demolished and goods were confiscated.”

“Five families, who reported a financial loss of almost 1.5 million Israeli shekels (. $400,000), were affected. In another incident, the livelihoods of 70 people were affected by the demolition of a leather store on the margins of al-Bireh City near the Ramallah district.”

On December 5th, the Israeli authorities dismantled and seized two structures in the Hebron district to be used as a school for 45 students. Three tents erected subsequently by the Palestinian Ministry of Education to replace the targeted structures were also seized.

OCHA mentioned that this is the seventh case during 2018 where educational structures were targeted under the pretext of “lack of building permits.” It is estimated that 50 West Bank schools, 42 in Area C and eight in East Jerusalem, have pending demolition orders against all or part of their facilities, according to the Education Cluster.

“In East Jerusalem, nine structures were targeted during December, nearly half the monthly average during the rest of 2018.”

“In one incident, Palestinians were forced to demolish a 20 year-old building home to two families, comprising 14 people. The families reported that since the start of the legal proceedings, they have paid the municipality 160,000 shekels ($43,382) in fines, in addition to 25,000 shekels ($6,778) they spent on the demolition itself.”

“During the month, the Israeli military carried out two punitive demolitions, bringing the total in 2018 to six, compared to nine in 2017.”

In addition, the report mentioned that in al-Amari refugee camp in the Ramallah district, Israeli forces blew up and destroyed a four-story building and severely damaged two adjacent buildings, displacing 23 people, including six children. The targeted building was home to the family of a man who reportedly killed an Israeli soldier with a brick during a search operation in the camp in May 2018.

Demolition and Displacement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories by the Apartheid State

Demolition and Displacement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories

September Report

Between israel’s bullets and bulldozers

Between Israel’s bullets and bulldozers

Adlan Mansri The Electronic Intifada

The shepherding community of Khirbet al-Malih is located in a hilly area of the Jordan Valley in the northeast corner of the occupied West Bank. Pockets of families live in metal-frame tents in small Bedouin encampments. Israel occupied the area in 1967 and, like some 60 percent of the West Bank, it is under full Israeli military control.

Since the 1970s, this area has also been an Israeli live-fire military zone, along with around half of the rest of the Jordan Valley, according to the rights group B’Tselem.

In an otherwise peaceful countryside lies a military outpost. For the residents of Khirbet al-Malih, the firing zone designation means the Israeli military can train whenever they want. The shepherds and their families live with the constant presence of military vehicles criss-crossing the countryside, semi-trailer trucks transporting tanks, low-flying aircraft, gunfire and explosions.

Khirbet Al-Malih is dry and hot in the summer, rainy in the winter and deep green in the spring. Spring is the best season for milk because there is plenty of food for the animals.

A Bedouin resident of Khirbet al-Malih rolls a cigarette made with tobacco grown on his field.

If Israeli forces want to use the land around a Bedouin family compound for military exercises, they do. They pull up to a tent and demand everyone leave for a certain period of time, often for days. Families pack the few things they can, gather their animals and leave. They sleep outside until they are allowed to return, often to trampled crops and turned-up earth where tanks passed through. This photo shows the aftermath of one such military exercise. Since 2014, at least three Palestinians have been killed and five injured by unexploded ordnance left behind during military exercises in the Jordan Valley, according to B’Tselem.

Khadir Brahim lives in Khirbet al-Malih on land owned by a Christian church. In recent days, Brahim said, the military performed exercises. “They made us and others leave our homes,” he said. When Brahim is forced to evacuate, he said: “I take the minimal, the goats, the sheep and just go.” Brahim added that, “If anyone is caught staying in their home, the army would physically throw us out and beat them if necessary.” The army once shot a camel, he said.

Ezra Nawi is an Israeli human rights activist who has been working in the northern Jordan Valley for years. He says Israel’s aim in the Jordan Valley is the same as in the South Hebron Hills and East Jerusalem: pushing Palestinians off their land. “It is the police, the army, the intelligence. It’s the same body with many arms. All of them with the same target, how to squeeze them out,” he said.

Mahyoub al-Meer is a shepherd living with his family on land his grandfather owned. He said he has papers proving his family’s ownership of the land. But under military occupation, papers do little to protect one’s rights. “Every day there is the army, the settlers, the exercises. Every day there are problems,” he said.

The army recently approached al-Meer’s family, some of whom are seen here, and declared his land a closed military zone. There were no military exercises as far as he could see but they still forced him to leave. “I resisted, I asked why? I asked if it was just me, or did the settler two kilometers away also have to evacuate. The army then asked for my papers. I told them that I was born here, why would I need a license? So I had to leave, I took my family away with me for two days.“

Al-Meer and his family are surrounded by three hillsides cradling their cluster of tents and sheep pens. One hillside has a road cutting through it, leading to Amihai, the newest settlement, just two kilometers away, built on his family’s land in 2017. On the adjacent hill, directly above them, is a military outpost with a watchtower and cellphone tower, leaving them with the feeling of always being watched. These hills were once for grazing, but now al-Meer keeps his distance unless Nawi or other volunteers are with him.

Because Israel prevents Palestinians from building in Area C – a zone comprising about 60 percent of the West Bank – al-Meer cannot dig a well. He cannot access the water line that goes up to the military outpost. Instead, he pays for water tanks trucked in from the nearest town. He has been cut off from his pastures, reducing the available food for his sheep and goats. In 2016, his family dwellings and animal shelters, built of mud and earth, were demolished by the military. They also tore down a small kindergarten on his land. The small schoolhouse served children from neighboring camps, giving them a head start before they went to Tubas for regular schooling.

Adlan Mansri is a French-Algerian photojournalist based in the Middle East.

Unearthing Truths: israel, the Nakba, and the Jewish National Fund

Unearthing Truths: Israel, the Nakba, and the Jewish National Fund

Unearthing Truths: Israel, the Nakba, and the Jewish National Fund

One of countless photos of Palestinians fleeing their homes during the Nakba – the Catastrophe – of 1948 when they were forced from their land by the new state of Israel

The Forward courageously reminds American Jews of the reality of the Nakba, the slogans and symbols of the Jewish project that enabled mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people – and the policies that enable it to continue today. Their hope (and ours at IAK) is that pro-Israel communities will honestly confront the history and the present situation in the land, and move toward justice.

by the Editors, the Forward

We present this special issue of Moving Forward to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Nakba, the Arabic word for ‘catastrophe.’ The Nakba refers to the expulsion and dispossession of 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland during Israel’s creation (1947-1949).

In this issue, we lay out the historical record of those years to show that the Nakba was the result of a deliberate policy of mass expulsion, dispossession, and ethnic cleansing—a strategy designed to ensure that the Palestinians who had lived on the land for generations would be barred from ever returning. We also zero in on the fundamental role played by the 117-year-old international organization, the Jewish National Fund (JNF), in facilitating that dispossession.

American Jews used to drop coins into the Jewish National Fund’s blue charity boxes to help Zionists build the Jewish state. More than a century later, the JNF, known in Hebrew and functioning in Israel as Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael (KKL), owns 13% of all the land in the country and brings in some $3 billion a year, most of it from land sales.

Our goal is that there be a serious moral reckoning with this history, and it begins with that icon of innocence, the JNF’s small blue metal box that many of our readers will remember from their childhood, boxes that beckoned us to drop in coins that would help “make the desert bloom” and build the land of Israel. It was a mission that was legitimized by the governing principle of the Zionist cause: “A land without a people for a people without a land.” As seductive as that slogan was, it was willfully false, as amply documented in personal testimonies of Palestinians and Israelis, historical records, and scholarly research. How, after all, could 750,000 Palestinians flee “a land without a people”?

From its founding, the JNF was encouraged by the Zionist movement to acquire land in Palestine for the purpose of settling Jews on that land. After 1948, aided and abetted by Israeli land law, the JNF continued to acquire land and also contributed to Israel’s dispossession of Palestinians from their land. This was accomplished by buying swathes of land from absentee landlords and then leasing it exclusively to Jews, by confiscating refugees’ land, and by forcibly—often violently—removing Palestinians from their land, a practice which persists today. By continuing to plant forests that conceal the ruins of Palestinian villages, the JNF seeks to erase history and memory, while hoping to whitewash its political motives and enhance its recent branding as an environmental organization. Ironically, however, it has earned widespread international condemnation for the degradation it has inflicted on the natural ecosystem.

While this year marks the 70th anniversary of the catastrophic events of 1948, we also know that the policies that informed Israel’s and the JNF’s actions back then continue to the present. With this issue we hope to expose the relationship between the Nakba and the Jewish National Fund; to encourage deeper conversation about the experiences and realities of Palestinians before, during and since Israel’s creation; and to facilitate among US Jewish communities—and more broadly—honest reflection, analysis, and action toward truth-telling and justice.

The Editors

Mandla Mandela: israel Imposing ‘Worst Version of Apartheid’

Mandla Mandela: Israel Imposing ‘Worst Version of Apartheid’

The grandson of South Africa’s revolutionary leader likened Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands to apartheid.

Mandla Mandela, the grandson of South Africa’s first president and independence leader, Nelson Mandela, accused Israel of imposing an “apartheid regime” during a historic visit to Palestine.

Declassified Israeli Transcripts Discuss Ethnic Cleansing

Mandela, who is a strong advocate for the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement, held a joint press conference with Palestinian Prime Minister (PM) Rami Hamdallah and said: “The settlements I saw here [in the West Bank] reminded me of what we had suffered in South Africa because we also were surrounded by many settlements and were not allowed to move from one place to another freely.”

“Palestinians are being subjected to the worst version of apartheid,” Mandela continued, echoing a (now retracted) assessment published by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia which concluded that “Israel has established an apartheid regime that dominates the Palestinian people as a whole.”

Hamdallah told the South African MP about the “violations against the Palestinians, including settlement expansion and displacement projects that constitute a major obstacle to realizing the dream of establishing a Palestinian state.”

Prime Minister Hamdallah invoked the legacy of Nelson Mandela in a meeting that took place with the revolutionary leader’s grandson in Ramallah.

The prime minister also stressed the importance of relations between Palestine and South Africa, two nations born of struggle against racism and ethnocentrism. He also praised South Africa for supporting the Palestinian people before the international community and in the United Nations General Assembly.

“What we have experienced in South Africa is a fraction of what the Palestinians are experiencing,” Mandela remarked during an interview with Royal News English, on Sunday. “We were oppressed in order to serve the white minority. The Palestinians are being eliminated off their land and brought out of their territories, and this is a total human-rights violations. I think it is a total disgrace that the world is able to sit back while such atrocities are being carried out by apartheid Israel.”

Mandela is also set to meet with other Palestinian officials, including Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. During his trip, the MP will also visit Bethlehem, Jerusalem, and Yasser Arafat’s mausoleum in Ramallah. An official statement by Mandela did not indicate whether the MP would meet with Israeli officials, though the Israeli Foreign Ministry indicated that they had not been briefed on the MP’s visit.

Perhaps the greatest symbol of solidarity between South Africa and Palestine is a six-meter tall statue of Nelson Mandela erected near Yasser Arafat’s mausoleum, both of whom were the first presidents of their respective countries.

Israel and apartheid South Africa had close ties, before the African nation’s liberation from repression imposed by the white minority. South Africa was among only 33 nations that voted in favor of the 1947 UN Partition Plan of Palestine and recommended the creation of a Jewish ethnostate.

While apartheid South Africa and Israel had a near-falling-out when Israel tried to extend a hand to sub-Saharan African nations, this hand was quickly rejected when it became apparent to postcolonial African nations that Israeli was a colonizer state. A catalyst for this was the Six-Day War and subsequent military occupation of the Sinai Peninsula and West Bank.

In response to increasing isolation felt by both colonizer states, the mouthpiece of the South African Nationalist Party, Die Burger, remarked: “Israel and South Africa are engaged in a struggle for existence… The anti-Western powers have driven Israel and South Africa into a community of interests which had better be utilized than denied.”

It was after this point that both South Africa and Israel deepened their financial and strategic ties. Israel became the main arms supplier to the South African Defence Force as well as its main military ally. It is also widely believed by many that South Africa and Israel collaborated to develop nuclear weapons.

Former Israeli Minister ‘Proud’ of Killing Most Palestinians

In response to this historical collaboration by their respective oppressors, relations between the current South African state and Palestine have deep ties. Nelson Mandela, the first president of South Africa, and Yasser Arafat, the first president of the Palestinian National Authority, had close relations and shared similar views.

South Africa opened diplomatic relations with the State of Palestine in 1995, which was not long after the Republic of South Africa was created from the abolition of apartheid in 1994.

Nelson Mandela once famously remarked:

“We know all too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

Echoing the remarks of his grandfather, Mandla Mandela said, during the July speech:

“We demand that Israel complies with International law and demand the return of six million Palestinian refugees driven from the land of their birth. We demand that all occupied land be returned, and we condemn the continued expansion of illegal Israeli settlements on Palestinian land.”

He continued in his address: “Today, we stand to salute the brave and fearless Palestinian people who are facing the brutal might of the Israeli Army to defend al-Aksa with their bare hands. We demand that all occupied land be returned. Madiba reminded us that our freedom is incomplete until Palestine is free.”

Palestine, 50 years of an illegal military occupation and land theft by israel

Fifty years of military rule

A general view of the Israeli settlement of Beitar Illit (foreground), on the outskirts of Jerusalem, on March 8, 2010. Photo by Ahmad Gharabli/AFP/Getty Images

Fifty years ago, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 242. The resolution is used as a framework for implementing the two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

But since its adoption in 1967, Israel has violated the resolution by entrenching its occupation of the Palestinian territories through illegal settlements.

600,000 – 750,000  Illegal settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories

150 Settlements

119 Outposts

42% Of West Bank land controlled by settlements

86% Of East Jerusalem for Israeli state and settler use

The majority of settlements have been built either entirely or partially on private Palestinian property

Israel’s settlements: 50 years of land theft explained

Produced by Zena Tahhan, Al Jazeera
November 21, 2017

To the casual visitor or tourist driving through the occupied West Bank or Jerusalem, Israeli settlements may appear as just another set of houses on a hill.

The middle-class suburban style townhouses, built fast and locked in a grid of uniform units, stand like fortified compounds, in direct contrast to the sprawling limestone Palestinian homes below.

Settlement homes, mostly constructed of cement with a cosmetic limestone cladding, tend to fashion a similar look: American-style villas topped by red-tiled roofs and surrounded by lush, neatly trimmed green lawns.

The largest settlement, Modi’in Illit, houses more than 64,000 Israeli Jews in the occupied West Bank. The mega-settlement has its own mayor, as well as schools, shopping malls and medical centres.

Some settlements even have their own universities.

Today, between 600,000 and 750,000 Israelis live in these sizeable settlements, equivalent to roughly 11 percent of the total Jewish Israeli population.

They live beyond the internationally recognised borders of their state, on Palestinian land that Israel occupied in 1967, comprising East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Since then, the Israeli government has openly funded and built settlements for Israeli Jews to live there, offering incentives and subsidised housing.

So why have these housing compounds caused so much rancour and been called a threat to the prospect of peace in the Holy Land?

Follow this journey to find out.

What are settlements and how did they come about?

Contrary to common belief, settlements are a legacy of the pre-1948 period, before the creation of Israel.

In the 1880s, the community of Palestinian Jews, known as the Yishuv, amounted to three percent of the total population. They were apolitical and did not aspire to build a modern Jewish state.

But in the late 19th century, the Zionist movement – a political ideology – grew out of Eastern Europe, claiming that Jews were a nation or race that deserved a modern “Jewish state”.

The movement, citing the biblical belief that God promised Palestine to the Jews, began to buy land there and build settlements to strengthen their claim to the land.

At the time, these settlements, built largely on the coastal plain and in the north of the country, were called “Kibbutzim” and “Moshavim”.

The first Kibbutz Degania, was established in 1909 by European Jewish colonists. Tel Aviv, now the economic capital of Israel, was also built in the early 20th century and was one of the first settlements.

The approach is known as “creating facts on the ground” – laying a stake in an area to ensure that it will be part of a future state and difficult to get rid of later on.


The distribution of the settlements determined the map of the proposed United Nations Partition Plan for Jewish and Palestinian states in 1947.

By 1948, prior to the ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Zionist movement, Jews had control over less than six percent of the land.

According to Israeli statistics, there were some 80 kibbutzim and moshavim before 1948.

214 kibbutzim
67,550 total population

What Israel did with Jerusalem

Shortly after the 1967 war, Israel illegally annexed East Jerusalem and declared it part of its “eternal, undivided” capital.

Map of East Jerusalem in 2007 shows the separation wall (in red) and the Israeli settlements in purple on areas of the occupied West Bank illegally annexed to Jerusalem. Source: United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

This meant that it extended its law to East Jerusalem and claimed it as part of Israel, unlike the West Bank, which it physically occupies but does not claim.

The annexation of East Jerusalem is not recognised by any country in the world as it violates several principles of international law, which outlines that an occupying power does not have sovereignty in the territory it occupies.

The international community, including the US, officially regards East Jerusalem as occupied territory.

However, since Israel considers East Jerusalem part of its state, it calls the settlements there “neighbourhoods”.

Israel’s settlement project after 1967: How is it different?

When the guns fell silent in 1967, the Israeli state began building colonies, or settlements, for its Jewish Israeli citizens on Palestinian land it had just occupied.

Settlements have become the hallmark of the Israeli colonial project in Palestine.

In the last 50 years, the Israeli government has transferred between 600,000 and 750,000 Jewish Israelis to the West Bank and East Jerusalem. They live in at least 160 settlements and outposts.

This means that roughly 11 percent of Israel’s 6.6 million Jewish population now lives on occupied land, outside the internationally recognised borders of Israel.

Left-wing Israeli protesters hold signs during a protest in Tel Aviv condemning an attack by settlers that killed an 18-month Palestinian baby in 2015 in the occupied West Bank. Source Baz Ratner/ Reuters

The dilemma of the settlements and the occupation has effectively split Israelis between those who believe it is their God-given right to settle land that was promised to the Jewish people, and others who believe the settlements are a death sentence for the Jews.

To religious Jews, the outcome of the 1967 war and the seizure of the remainder of historical Palestine – particularly East Jerusalem, which houses the Old City – led to a sense of euphoria.

Thousands of Jews, including secular Jews, flocked to the Western Wall, also known as the al-Buraq Wall to Muslims. They wept as they gave thanks for what they believed was a miracle from God.

The majority of Israeli Zionist leftists who oppose the settlement project however, believe in the Jewish state along 1948 borders and reject Israel’s expansion into the occupied territories.

To Palestinians, Israel’s occupation and the settlement project did not come as a surprise; the Zionist movement was founded by non-natives to colonise the land, just as they did in 1948.

Munir Nuseibah, a law professor at al-Quds University in Jerusalem, says the occupation and the settlement project “reminded the world of the colonial aspects of Israel”.

Why are they illegal under international law?

In a series of agreements known as the Geneva Conventions, formulated in the aftermath of World War II, the international community established a set of accepted rules and standards for the protection of civilians, prisoners and injured people in times of war.

Under the Fourth Geneva Convention, which defines humanitarian protections for civilians caught in a war zone, an occupying power is forbidden from transferring parts of its civilian population into the territory it occupies.

The rationale behind this is simple.

1. To ensure that the occupation is temporary and allow for a solution to the conflict by preventing To ensure that the occupation is temporary and allow for a solution to the conflict by preventing the occupying power from acquiring long-term interests through military control.

2. To protect occupied civilians from theft of resources by the occupying power.

3. To prohibit a de facto situation in which two groups living on the same land are subject to two different legal systems, i.e. apartheid.

4. To prevent changes in the demographic makeup of the occupied territory.

But the Israeli government maintains that the status of the Palestinian territories is ambiguous, as there was no internationally recognised government in the territories prior to the 1967 war. The Israeli government argues that it took the territory from Jordan, which had control of the West Bank and East Jerusalem between 1949 and 1967, while Egypt had control of the Gaza Strip.

Israel regards the West Bank as “disputed” territory and thus refutes the existence of a military occupation there; saying the Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply. But the UN, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Court of Justice, and the international community have all affirmed that it does.

Israel also denies that any of the settlements were built on private Palestinian land.

What types of settlements are there?

There are three main types of Israeli colonies in the occupied Palestinian territories, all of which involve seizing Palestinian land and are all illegal under international law.


Houses in the settlement of Ofra in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, established in the vicinity of the Palestinian village of Baytin (background) on Nov. 17.Photo by Thomas Coex / AFP – Getty Images

Built by the Israeli government, mainly in rural areas in the West Bank and Jerusalem, many are on private Palestinian property and within close proximity to Palestinian towns and cities.

After the signing of the Oslo Accords in the early 1990s, the Israeli government stopped officially building new settlements but expanded existing ones,

In 2017, Israel started building the first new settlement in two decades.

How does Israel take over land?

Israel has developed a myriad of ways to seize Palestinian land.

Since Israel has not annexed the occupied West Bank and does not have jurisdiction there, it uses military orders as well as its own interpretations of Ottoman, British and Jordanian laws to seize Palestinian property.

In East Jerusalem however, the state applies Israeli law, despite the fact that the territory is considered occupied under international law, and the Palestinians who live there are not Israeli citizens.

Israel has declared at least 26 percent of the West Bank as “state land”.

Using a different interpretation of Ottoman, British and Jordanian laws, Israel stole public and private Palestinian land for settlements under the pretext of “state land”.

Though many Palestinians had paid taxes and cultivated their land for decades, most land wasn’t registered during the Ottoman and British occupations; in 1968, Israel stopped the process of land registration and declared any unregistered land as belonging to the Israeli government.

Settlements on “state land” often expand into surrounding, privately owned, Palestinian land.

As an occupying power, Israel does not own the West Bank and is not permitted under international law to seize land in this manner.


Why the locations of settlements matter

Settlements are scattered across the West Bank in a way that makes a contiguous Palestinian state impossible, while in Jerusalem the Israeli government has built settlements around the city to consolidate control over it.

Beit El settlement

These “ring neighbourhoods” are a set of major settlement blocs to the north, east and south of the Jerusalem, which Israel hopes to annex to its state.

The ring settlements have effectively cut off the West Bank’s north from the south, impeding the ability of Palestinians to travel between cities in a normal fashion.

The building of these Jewish settlements around the city was not random but rather tells of a deeper Israeli political aim.

After the 1967 war and the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, Teddy Kollek, the mayor of the contested city, said in 1968: “The object is to ensure that all of Jerusalem remains forever a part of Israel. If this city is to be our capital, then we have to make it an integral part of our country, and we need Jewish inhabitants to do that.”

Indeed, Israel formalised its annexation of the eastern half of the city in 1980 when it passed the Jerusalem Law, claiming that “Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel”, in violation of international law, which states that the city should be administered by the UN for its importance to the three Abrahamic religions.

The purpose was to seal the fate of Jerusalem and thwart negotiations over the city in any future agreement.

The woman who first introduced the Jerusalem Law to the Israeli parliament, Geula Cohen, also believes that Israel could annex the entire West Bank “if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wills it”.

Israeli MKs plan to annex the three major settlement blocs round Jerusalem

Israeli lawmakers are now making moves to annex three large settlement blocs in the occupied West Bank to the Israeli-defined boundaries of Jerusalem.

The so-called “Greater Jerusalem bill” would see the addition of 140,000 Jewish Israelis who live in these settlements to the population of Jerusalem, to ensure a Jewish majority in the city.

“The government will approve the Greater Jerusalem law that will strengthen the eternal capital Jerusalem – demographically and geographically,” Yoav Kish, the Knesset member (MK) who submitted the proposal for the bill, said on Twitter.

A boy places the Palestinian flag on the controversial Israeli separation wall, with Israeli settlements showing in the background. Source: Ammar Awad/Reuters

In 2004, Israel began building the separation wall, which was meant to provide “security” for Israelis by dividing between the West Bank and Israel following the second Palestinian uprising in 2000.

Israel has however used the wall to annex more land to its borders and has built it around some of the largest settlements in the West Bank, placing them on the “Israeli side”.

Some 85 percent of the wall falls inside the West Bank, and not on the Green Line. Palestinians have therefore aptly described the wall as an “annexation wall”.

In 2009, the Jerusalem municipality adopted a master plan intended “to guide and outline the city’s development in the next decades”. The vision, as stated in the plan, is to create a ratio of 70 percent Israeli Jews to 30 percent Palestinians in the city.

Does Israel hope to annex the West Bank as well?

While many Israeli members of parliament hope to annex the entire West Bank – which they call by its biblical name, Judea and Samaria – there is a fear that bringing the territory into the boundaries of Israel would upset the population ratio by tipping the demographic balance in favour of the Palestinians in the country.

Annexing the West Bank would mean giving the 3.1 million Palestinians who live there Israeli citizenship and extending Israeli law, instead of martial law, to the area. Many see this as “an end to the Jewish state”, as Palestinians would outnumber Jewish Israelis.

But the growing settlement enterprise across the West Bank brings this possibility closer to reality every day.


Map shows Area C (in dark brown), and the route of the separation wall, which Israel has used to annex parts of the West Bank to East Jerusalem
Source: United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs


 For some Israeli right-wing ministers, the annexation of Area C – which makes up 60 percent of the West Bank and is subject to total Israeli control – is a more realistic aim for the time being.

All the settlements are located in Area C, where some 300,000 Palestinians live – a figure consistently under-reported by Israeli politicians. Annexing the territory would mean that Israel could absorb the maximum amount of land with the least number of Palestinians.

The settlements in the West Bank are already connected to East Jerusalem and Israel through a series of Jewish-only roads that give the settlers the luxury of crossing the Green Line without having to pass through Palestinian population centres – as though they live in one single state.

The situation in Area C, where Israel consistently acts to minimise Palestinian presence through home demolitions, displacement, theft of resources and refusing to grant building permits, amounts to de facto annexation.

Quotes from Israeli politicians on annexation

How do they impact Palestinians?

Besides being built illegally on private and public Palestinian land, settlements impact the day-to-day life of Palestinians in many ways.

In 2016, the UN found that the economy of the occupied Palestinian territories would be twice as large if the 50-year occupation were lifted.

Israel’s policies of occupation and settlement have come to be seen as a purposeful strategy of de-development to weaken resistance to military rule and thwart attempts to build a successful Palestinian state.

Theft of resources

The settlements have only been able to thrive through severe economic exploitation of the occupied West Bank at the expense of the natives.

While the majority of the Palestinian population in the West Bank live in Areas A and B, the infrastructure upon which their livelihood depends either lies in or crosses into Area C.

Close to half of the Biet Owwa village (pictured) lies in Area C and has been severely affected by the settlements, checkpoints and the separation wall surrounding it. Photo by Mussa Qawasma/ Reuters

The area encompasses the territory’s water resources, most fertile pasture and agricultural land, as well as mining and mineral extraction resources and tourist sites.

Palestinian access to Area C, some 60 percent of the West Bank, is either completely prohibited or highly restricted, causing an annual loss of $3.4bn to the economy.


Israel controls some 90 percent of the water resources

Israeli settlers use about six times more water than the 3.1 million Palestinians in the West Bank do.

Freedom of movement and the separation wall

Israel uses various methods to hinder Palestinian movement in the West Bank for the protection of Israeli settlers.

Palestinians cross through the Israeli Qalandia military checkpoint near the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah. Photo by Ammar Awad/ Reuters

  • By the end of 2016, there were 572 obstacles to the free movement of Palestinians, including military checkpoints and roadblocks, in the occupied West Bank.
  • The separation wall has physically separated Palestinian communities from one another and added hours to otherwise short commutes.
  • Palestinians in certain areas must cross a checkpoint to enter and exit their villages.

Settler violence

Due to the close proximity of settlements to Palestinian homes, friction and violence between settlers and Palestinians is a near-daily reality.

A Palestinian boy  looks at a torched car in the Palestinian village of Zubeidat in the Jordan Valley in 2013. Photo by Mohamad Torokman /Reuters

  • In the first half of 2017, the UN documented 89 incidents in which Israeli settlers killed or injured Palestinians or damaged Palestinian property.
  • The main forms of violence by Israeli settlers include throwing stones at Palestinian homes and vehicles, physically assaulting Palestinians, uprooting or damaging olive trees, vandalising property, or setting fire to agricultural lands.
  • In 2016, more than 1,500 Palestinian olive trees were damaged or uprooted by settlers, in addition to 2.5 million trees uprooted since 1967.
  • The overwhelming majority of complaints filed against settler violence pass without any punishment of the perpetrators.

Home demolitions

While building homes for settlers, Israel employs a policy of home demolitions to restrict the expansion of Palestinian communities on the pretext that homes were built without necessary permits, while refusing to issue them.

A Palestinian girl cries as she walks past her family’s house after it was demolished by Israeli bulldozers in Om Ajaj village, north of the occupied West Bank city of Jericho. Photo by Abed Omar Qusini/ Reuters

  • Since 1967, Israeli authorities have demolished over 27,000 Palestinian homes in the occupied territory.
  • Between 2000 and 2007, Israeli authorities rejected more than 94 percent of permit requests in Area C.
  • Demolitions of homes and other structures that forcibly displace Palestinians may amount to war crimes.

Resolution 242, adopted unanimously by the Security Council on November 22 

The Security Council,

Expressing its continuing concern with the grave situation in the Middle East,

Emphasizing the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in which every State in the area can live in security,

Emphasizing further that all Member States in their acceptance of the Charter of the United Nations have undertaken a commitment to act in accordance with Article 2 of the Charter,

1. Affirms that the fulfilment of Charter principles requires the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East which should include the application of both the following principles:

(i) Withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict;

(ii) Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force;

2. Affirms further the necessity

(a) For guaranteeing freedom of navigation through international waterways in the area;

(b) For achieving a just settlement of the refugee problem;

(c) For guaranteeing the territorial inviolability and political independence of every State in the area, through measures including the establishment of demilitarized zones;

3. Requests the Secretary-General to designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution;

4. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Security Council on the progress of the efforts of the Special Representative as soon as possible.
Adopted unanimously at the 1382nd meeting.

Forget the ‘slippery slope’ — israel already is an apartheid state


by Neil MacDonald

As the late Yossi Sarid, longtime leader of Israel's Meretz party and former education minister once put it: "What acts like apartheid, is run like apartheid and harasses like apartheid, is not a duck — it is apartheid."

As the late Yossi Sarid, longtime leader of Israel’s Meretz party and former education minister once put it: “What acts like apartheid, is run like apartheid and harasses like apartheid, is not a duck — it is apartheid.” (Mohamad Torokman/Reuters)

The time has come to call the duck a duck. It’s time to agree with a long list of Israeli political leaders, academics and public figures on both the political left and right, including three former prime ministers, a winner of the Israel prize, two former heads of the Israeli internal security service Shin Bet, and one of the country’s principal newspapers, all of whom have warned that the Jewish state is becoming, or already is, an apartheid state.

I would choose the latter characterization.    

It’s interesting that within the Israeli discourse, the assertion seems to have become routine, while it remains radioactive in the West, where energetic pro-Israel activists scrutinize the media, the academy and the polity, ready to declare anti-Semitism or incitement at any use of the word.

Look at the outrage and venom poured upon former President Jimmy Carter, under whose brokerage the peace accord between Israel and Egypt was signed, when he titled a 2006 book Palestine: Peace not Apartheid.

Suddenly, Carter was transformed from a Nobel Peace Prize laureate and statesman to a dotty old man under the sway of terrorists, at least in the eyes of Israel’s supporters, including a significant fraction of his own cohort, Evangelical American Christians.

A duck is a duck

But reality is reality, and a duck is a duck. As the late Yossi Sarid, longtime leader of Israel’s Meretz party and former education minister once put it: “What acts like apartheid, is run like apartheid and harasses like apartheid, is not a duck — it is apartheid.”

This past June, former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak re-stated a position he’s held for years: “If we keep controlling the whole area from the Mediterranean to the river Jordan where some 13 million people are living — eight million Israelis, five million Palestinians … if only one entity reigned over this whole area, named Israel, it would become inevitably — that’s the key word, inevitably – either non-Jewish or non-democratic.” The country is, he repeated, “on a slippery slope” that ends in apartheid.

The dividing line between prominent Israelis who use the term in the here and now, rather than as a warning of what’s coming, seems to be the continued existence of the “peace process,” with its promise of a Palestinian state, and self-governance.

And when I was posted in Jerusalem for CBC News, back in the late ’90s, that actually did seem like a possibility, if an unlikely one.

Since then, the peace process — always half-hearted — has utterly collapsed. Expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank continued, and since the election of Donald Trump, colonization has surged with an invigorated enthusiasm.

A picture taken on January 17, 2017 shows new apartments under construction in the Israeli settlement of Har Homa situated in East Jerusalem, and a view of the Arab neighborhood of Umm Tuba in the background. (Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images)

Their existence is in fact currently being celebrated in a series of appearances by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“We are here to stay, forever,” he declared two months ago in the settlement of Barkan, commemorating the 50th anniversary of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

“There will be no more uprooting of settlements in the land of Israel.” (The “Land of Israel,” as opposed to the State of Israel, is a term used by the Israeli right to describe all the territory between the Jordan and the Mediterranean, and sometimes even further).

Ayelet Shaked and Naftali Bennett, respectively Israel’s justice and education ministers, have said the Palestinians must understand they will never have a state. Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman, a settler, has said there is “no hope” of a mutually agreed upon Palestinian state, but has warned Naftali Bennett against promoting outright annexation:

“What Bennett and his Jewish Home party are proposing is a classical bi-national state,” Liberman said two years ago. “They need to decide if they’re talking about a bi-national state between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean … or whether they’re talking about an apartheid state.”

Palestinian underclass

Liberman’s logic seems to be that as long as the Palestinians are simply occupied and governed by a different set of laws, with far fewer rights than Israelis (as opposed to denying them a state but giving them a vote in some expanded version of Israel, which the Israeli right considers national suicide), then it is not really apartheid.

But annexation at this point would merely amount to staging a home already sold.

In the past decade, Ze’ev Jabotinsky’s “Iron Wall” doctrine has given rise to an actual wall, sometimes an iron one, running roughly along the 1967 borders of the West Bank and Gaza. The main roads from Jerusalem north to Ramallah and Nablus and south to Bethlehem and Hebron are now blocked by gigantic, fortified military barriers. The roughly three quarters of a million Jewish settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem have complete freedom of movement and their own set of roads, effectively forbidden to the disenfranchised Palestinian underclass.


Settlers suspected of crimes are entitled to full rights in Israeli courts; Palestinians endure military tribunals, indefinite imprisonment without charge (“administrative detention”) and collective punishment. Settlers are entitled to carry arms and use them in self-defence; Palestinians are not. Settlers have property rights. Palestinians have property claims. Et cetera.

Netanyahu frames it all as a matter of national survival, warning that any land conceded will immediately be occupied by fundamentalist terrorists determined to destroy the State of Israel, with its nuclear weapons, tanks, fighter jets, layered missile defence systems and 600,000-plus active and reserve troops.

His definition of terrorism is a nuanced one; at an event a few years ago commemorating the 60th anniversary of the bombing of the King David Hotel by Irgun fighters, considered a terrorist act by the British government to this day, Netanyahu characterized the perpetrators as legitimate military fighters, and warned the outraged British government to watch its language.

Netanyahu frames expansion of settlements all as a matter of national survival. (Sebastian ScheinerAssociated Press)

But then, an elastic worldview is apparently necessary to maintain the status quo; when Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party signed a formal reconciliation recently with the “terrorists” of Hamas, who rule Gaza, both Israel and the United States objected, saying such a union endangers, yes, the peace process. The fact that today’s terrorists tend to become tomorrow’s statesmen (the Irgun bombers later joined the nascent government of Israel, and former Irgun chief Menachem Begin became prime minister) is apparently irrelevant in this context.

At any rate, Ehud Barak’s slippery slope is now in the rearview mirror. Yossi Sarid’s duck has arrived. Let’s accept that, drop the pretense, and move on.

This column is part of CBC’s Opinion section. For more information about this section, please read this editor’s blog and our FAQ

Many people in the West claim to oppose racism but easily accept israel’s race-based system of ethnic cleansing

Zionism from the Diaspora: infinity.0

By Eve Mykytyn | October 16, 2107

I have noticed a distinct shift in the focus of the Zionist narrative in the US. For the last forty years or so, Israel has been sold to Americans as a necessary palliative for the Jewish people following the total destruction of the Holocaust. Now, the primary argument advanced is that the Jewish people have been a people tied to the land on which their state is located for a mythically uninterrupted period of time variously described as between 2,000 and 4,000 years.

Tom Segev reports in his book, The Seventh Million, that Holocaust refugees were looked down upon when they arrived in Israel. In the United States the holocaust didn’t become a major part of the Zionist dialogue until the 1970s and  we are now suffused with memorials (wikipedia lists 63) to a tragedy that occurred on another continent. While there are certainly groups that commemorate the Irish Famine, the Armenian Genocide and other such tragedies, no tragedy receives the kind of attention that the Holocaust has garnered. Our own complicity in genocide receives relatively scant attention. This is despite the estimated two to four million Africans who died while being transported to be forced into slavery and the multiple genocidal wars with native peoples.

But while the magnificent horrors of the Holocaust have been infinitely portrayed  and the movies and books continue to flow, the focus of the narrative has shifted back to a variant to that employed by Zionism’s founders. The basic tenets are that the Jews have ties to the land of Israel that are stronger and somehow more legitimate than that of the Palestinians.

The Palestinians are first scorned for not using that term for themselves until their land was ‘cleansed’ of their presence. This was of course, common everywhere before the rise of nationalism. Before emancipation, Jews themselves identified as a religion and not as a nation. Certainly they were not Israelis before they established Israel. As Shlomo Sand has explored in The Invention of the Jewish People, Jews went through a process of inventing themselves as a nation, and that definition was probably a necessary precursor to ‘finding’ themselves a country. (Maybe as a result of this, Jews now have a unique identity. They are not one race, not all of them are religious and not all claim a right to Palestinian land. As Gilad Atzmon has explored it is the tripart nature of that identity, i.e., religion, race and politics that leave you criticized as racist or anti Semitic if you criticize the politics of Israel.)

But whatever the facts of who called themselves what, the concept that the Palestinians by not calling themselves Palestinians should not be entitled to the land they lived on makes no real sense. Why would my self-proclaimed identity affect my ability to own land? I can own land in California without thinking of myself as a Californian. In fact, some Israelis own land in the US and I presume that they expect the US to make sure they retain their rights as owners.

The next step of this fantastic narrative is that the Palestinians gave up the land by leaving it at some point during the establishment of the state of Israel. By this narrative, the Palestinians gave up all rights to the land either by becoming refugees fleeing from ethnic cleansing and the destruction of their towns or by fighting to keep their land. This is tortured reasoning, but I guess that the idea is that if you don’t submit willingly to your own destruction and somehow survive, then you lose your property and assets.

I don’t know why the primary thrust of the myth has altered but I have a guess. In its initial stages, Israel needed citizens. Nationalism and blood privilege are attractive concepts. Then it seems for a long period Israel was more interested in donations, political capital and investment. As long as Jews supported Israel, Israel did not need them to move there. That has changed. With the full support of President Trump and the tacit support of most of western Europe’s leaders, Israel has been expanding by increasing its so-called settler movement of occupation, approving 12,000 new units in 2017 up from about 3000 in 2016. Netanyahu has announced he will annex the settlements, effectively increasing the size of the State of Israel. Instead of a Nakba there has been an endless stream of mini-Nakbas, just small enough to fall under the indulgent radar of the press.

Israel’s free ‘birthright’ (the name itself proclaims blood privilege) program promotional videos now emphasize coming home to young people who are citizens of other countries. It could be that Israel is working to neutralize the population advantage of the Palestinians.

It is clear that in the new narrative, citizenship is biologically and not geographically determined. It seems odd that so many in the West who claim to oppose racism, so easily accept a race-based system of ethnic cleansing.

Israel was founded on theft, theft of land, housing, mineral resources & even olive harvests

Israeli settlers steal olive harvest, attack Palestinian farmers in West Bank

Photo of settlers stealing olives on Oct. 15
LAST YEAR Palestinian farmers accuse Israeli settlers of stealing harvest from 400 Olive Trees

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers on Sunday stole olive pickings from dozens of trees belonging to Palestinian farmers from the occupied West Bank districts of Ramallah and Nablus.Ghassan Daghlas, an official who monitors settlements activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that dozens of Israeli settlers raided Palestinian lands in Ramallah and Nablus under protection of armed Israeli forces, and stole olives from dozens of Palestinian trees.

 Daghlas told Ma’an that Israeli settlers stole the pickings of more than 65 olive trees in the Nablus-area village of al-Sawiyeh and the Ramallah-area village of al-Janiyeh.

Meanwhile, NGO Rabbis For Human Rights (RHR) released a statement saying that the settlers, from the illegal Zayit Raanan outpost, were arrested by Israeli security forces “following the swift intervention of the head of the field department of Rabbis for Human Rights, Zakaria Sadah, who informed the security forces.”In another incident, also on Sunday, Palestinian farmers from the Nablus-area village of Qaryut were attacked by settlers. RHR said that Israeli security forces arrived at the scene and apprehended the assailants. “It is a relatively unusual day where the security forces manage to arrest extremist Israeli lawbreakers in two incidents against West Bank Palestinians,” RHR said, adding that “violations against Palestinian farmers are not properly addressed by the Israeli security and/or law enforcement authorities.”
“The arrests on October 15th demonstrate that the Israeli security forces do indeed should they want to – have the capacity to act against hate crimes,” the statement concluded.
A spokesperson for COGAT, the agency responsible for enforcing the Israeli government’s policies in the occupied Palestinian territory, told Ma’an they were looking into the reports.
  The Palestinian government has no jurisdiction over Israelis in the West Bank, and violent acts carried out by Israeli settlers often occur in the presence of Israeli military forces who rarely act to protect Palestinian residents.
The majority of settler attacks committed against Palestinians are met with impunity, with Israelis rarely facing consequences for such attacks.
Only 1.9 percent of complaints submitted by Palestinians against Israeli settler attacks result in a conviction, while 95.6 percent of investigations of damage to olive trees are closed due to failures of Israeli police, according to the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din.
Yesh Din, along with Israeli rights group B’Tselem, have previously condemned Israeli authorities for failing to protect Palestinians from settlers violence or investigate attacks, particularly during olive harvest season, when incidents of attacks on harvesters and their olive groves have been a near daily occurrence in past years.


Anti-Democratic israeli Laws

Anti-Democratic Israeli Laws

by Stephen Lendman ( – Home – Stephen Lendman)

Ziofascists and religious fundamentalists dominate Israel’s Knesset. It shows in deplorable racist, anti-democratic legislation, hardening repression against Palestinians.

Key measures enacted this year and in 2016 focused on land ownership and use, free expression and association, as well as civil and political rights.

In June 2016, an anti-terror law established new criminal offenses, including public expressions of support or empathy for ill-defined terrorist groups. Penalties were greatly increased.

The Settlements Regulation Law enacted in February let Israeli authorities steal vast tracts of private Palestinian land for settlement construction.

It established a process to legitimize about half of Israeli outposts, until now declared illegal by the state. It authorized 3,500 new housing units in existing illegal settlements.

In March, legislation banning foreign nationals and Palestinian BDS supporters from entering Israel was enacted. It violates the fundamental right of free expression and views on any issue.

The measure states “(n)o visa and residency permit of any type will be given to a person who is not an Israeli citizen or does not have a permit for permanent residency in the State of Israel if he, [or] the organization or entity for which he works, has knowingly issued a public call to impose a boycott on the State of Israel, as defined in the Preventing Harm to the State of Israel through Boycott Law…or has committed to participate in such a boycott.”

In March, a measure disqualifying candidates from Knesset elections was enacted, banning aspirants negating Israel as a “Jewish and democratic state” – which it’s not!

Enacted in April, the Kaminitz Law expanded regime power to demolish privately owned Palestinian homes. It authorizes prison sentences and fines for violations of discriminatory planning and building laws.

It limits judicial review by Israeli courts. The law’s main objective is preventing Palestinian construction on their own land – unauthorized without near-impossible to get permit permission. The right to appeal state rulings is practically eliminated.

In July, the NGO Foreign Funding Law was enacted, requiring these organizations receiving more than 50% of their annual budget from foreign governments to declare their sources of funding in all publications, including letters to government and public officials, as well as in reports to the Registrar of Non-Profit Associations.

Human rights groups fear the measure will chill views these organizations feel free to express, the law enacted to undermine their ability to operate effectively.

Enacted in July, the Expulsion of MKs Law lets a Knesset majority oust an MK for the remainder of the current term for alleged incitement to racism, support for an enemy state’s armed struggle and/or an Israeli designated terrorist organization.

The measure’s objective is stifling Arab MKs criticism of regime policies and/or expressing support for Syria’s war on US and Israeli supported terrorists.

Pending legislation includes the Negev Development Authority Bill to give settlements equal legal status (sic) to other area communities.

Enactment would contradict Israeli statute law, along with breaching international law and exacerbating human rights violations against Palestinians.

Other pending legislation seeks to annex settlements to Israel, one at a time or altogether. Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem was achieved this way.

A measure was introduced to deny tax-exempt status to NGOs criticizing Israeli policies, including accusing the ruling regime of committing war crimes and other human rights abuses.

A pending Cultural Loyalty Bill would require cultural institutions and artists seeking state funding to declare their loyalty to the State of Israel and its laws.

The measure targets Palestinian cultural and artistic institutions, restricting their artistic expression freedom.

I see no difference between the way the Nazis treated Jews and the way israel treats Palestinians

EU refuses to condemn Israeli genocide plan


Israeli lawmaker Bezalel Smotrich has adopted the values of the German SS, according to a Holocaust expert. But EU won’t condemn his genocidal plan for Palestinians. (via Facebook)

A party with members in Israel’s government has just endorsed a plan to force Palestinians out of their homeland.

A prominent Holocaust scholar previously called the plan potentially genocidal and likened the values of its chief proponent to those of the Nazi SS.

Yet the European Union, which claims a moral mission to combat extremism, racism and xenophobia, is refusing to condemn it.

The National Union faction, which has members in Israel’s parliament as part of the Jewish Home party, approved the plan at a conference this week.

It calls for annexing the occupied West Bank into a Greater Israel and effectively forcing Palestinians out of their homeland under threat of violence if they refuse Israel’s terms.

According to the Tel Aviv newspaper Haaretz, the plan long promoted by Jewish Home lawmaker Bezalel Smotrich is a “surrender-or-transfer ultimatum to the Palestinians.”

Palestinians would be offered a grim choice: “Anyone who is willing and able to relinquish the fulfillment of his national aspirations will be able to stay here and live as an individual in the Jewish state,” the plan states.

Otherwise, “Anyone who is unwilling or unable to relinquish his national aspirations will receive assistance from us to emigrate to one of the Arab countries.”

But if Palestinians don’t choose to surrender to the “Jewish state” or leave, they will be met with even “greater force” than the brutality Israel already uses to suppress the rights of millions of people under military occupation.

Netanyahu’s “stamp of approval”

The plan was unanimously approved by conference delegates, including Uri Ariel, agriculture minister in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet.

Both Ariel and Smotrich are prominent among Israeli extremists who support replacing the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem with a Jewish temple.

Netanyahu has not explicitly endorsed the plan but gave it what Haaretz termed a “stamp of approval” by sending a recorded greeting to the conference.

“I was happy to hear that you are devoting the discussions at the conference to the subject of the future of the Land of Israel,” Netanyahu said. “Up until not so many years ago, this country was deserted and abandoned, but since we returned to Zion, after generations of exile, the Land of Israel is flourishing.”

Netanyahu’s assertion that Palestine was “deserted and abandoned” prior to Zionist colonization is not only a falsification of history but a potential justification for future acts to forcibly remove Palestinians.


The plan adopted by the conference very likely meets the international legal definition of genocide.

It states that its objective is “to dismantle the Palestinian national collective.”

The international convention on preventing genocide defines genocide as any of a number of acts carried out “with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such.”

Although in the popular understanding genocide is equated with physical extermination of a group of human beings, its legal definition includes a broader number of acts. The key issue in defining an act as genocidal is the intention of its perpetrator.

Proponents of the plan explicitly state that existence of the Palestinians as a people is an obstacle to fulfilling Jewish ethnic-religious domination, and that they intend to target Palestinians because they are members of a particular national group.

“We do not assume that there are two narratives here that are equal,” Smotrich explained. “There’s one side that’s correct, and another that is undermining the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.”

Values of the German SS

Daniel Blatman, a professor of Holocaust studies at Hebrew University, wrote in May that Smotrich takes inspiration for his plan from the biblical Book of Joshua, which describes the wholesale slaughter of a people by the “children of Israel.”

Blatman called Smotrich, a deputy speaker of the Israeli parliament the Knesset, “the most senior government figure to date to say unabashedly that the option of genocide is on the table if the Palestinians don’t agree to our terms.”

“Smotrich’s admiration for the biblical genocidaire Joshua bin Nun leads him to adopt values that resemble those of the German SS,” Blatman, a fellow of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, added.

There is a long history of human rights scholarship and legal analysis that supports the assertion Israel is already committing genocide.

Israeli politicians have long promoted the forcible transfer of the Palestinians, and the idea has enjoyed broad and consistent public support.

EU silence

Last month, Vera Jourova, the European Union’s justice commissioner, recalled her visit to Israel’s Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial.

“We need to be the ones taking the message against racism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism for future generations,” she wrote on Twitter.

“This is the EU,” Jourova added, raising the moral responsibility to speak out to a defining European value.

In keeping with this spirit, The Electronic Intifada asked the office of European foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini if it would offer a clear, unambiguous and specific condemnation of the transfer plan and of its endorsement by Israeli government ministers, including, implicitly, by Netanyahu.

But the EU refused to do so. Instead, a spokesperson provided a robotic, general statement that the “European Union supports a two-state solution and has consistently expressed that compliance with international law, including international human rights law, is a cornerstone for peace and security in the region.”

So much for moral leadership.


Of course, the EU’s unwillingness to condemn the plan is hardly surprising. Jourova herself recently held friendly talks with another senior member of the Jewish Home party, Israeli justice minister Ayelet Shaked.

In 2014, Shaked notoriously promoted a call for genocide of the Palestinians on Facebook.

Shaked’s posting declared that “the entire Palestinian people is the enemy” and justified its destruction, “including its elderly and its women, its cities and its villages, its property and its infrastructure.”

And the EU’s embassy in Tel Aviv in July hired Israeli genocide advocate Avishai Ivri to star in a promotional video it posted on its Facebook page.

The embassy removed the video after The Electronic Intifada drew attention to Ivri’s calls to “wipe out” Gaza and systematically slaughter thousands of Palestinians.

But the EU never condemned Ivri’s statements or apologized for hiring him.

Honoring war criminals

While ignoring calls for the destruction of the Palestinian people, EU diplomats have plenty of time to honor those who have committed atrocities against them.

On Thursday, Emanuele Giaufret, the EU’s newly installed ambassador in Tel Aviv, attended a memorial for Shimon Peres, the former Israeli president who died a year ago.

Giaufret asserted that Peres was a “living inspiration to many” who “worked all his life” to “advance peace.”

Peres occupied virtually every senior post in the Israeli government during his decades long career.

“In all these roles,” historian Ilan Pappe recalled, “the decisions he took and the policies he pursued contributed to the destruction of the Palestinian people and did nothing to advance the cause of peace and reconciliation between Palestinians and Israelis.”

Among those in attendance at the memorial were Henry Kissinger and Tony Blair, fitting characters to pay tribute to a man who Palestinians and Lebanese will always remember as an unrepentant racist, colonizer and war criminal.

Palestinian family evicted from East Jerusalem home after 50 years

Israel Evicts Palestinian Family From East Jerusalem Home After 50 Years To Make Way for Jewish Owners

Police escort Shamasneh family out after Supreme Court rules Jewish family owned building before 1948, are rightful owners

Israeli policemen evict a member of the Palestinian Shamasneh family from the home in which they have lived for over half a century, in the East Jerusalem Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, September 5, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / Ahmad GHARABLI)

Israeli policemen evict a member of the Palestinian Shamasneh family from the home in which they have lived for over half a century, in the East Jerusalem Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, September 5, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / Ahmad GHARABLI)
Israeli police on Tuesday evicted a Palestinian family from the East Jerusalem home in which they lived for over half a century, making way for Israelis deemed by the Supreme Court to be the rightful owners of the property.

The Shamasneh family has for years been fighting a court battle against Jewish claimants who said that the building was their family property, which they fled when East Jerusalem was occupied by Jordanian troops in the 1948 war amid the creation of the Jewish state.

Under Israeli law, Jews who can prove that their families lived in East Jerusalem homes before the 1948 war can demand that Israel’s general custodian office release the property and return their “ownership rights.

During the war, thousands of Jews fled Jerusalem as Jordanian-led Arab forces seized the city, while hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled from land that was later to become Israel.

An Israeli stands inside the house of the Palestinian Shamasneh family, evicted by Israeli police from the home in which they lived for over half a century, in the Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah in East Jerusalem, September 5, 2017.
The word “thieves” has been scrawled on the door in Hebrew. (AFP PHOTO / Ahmad GHARABLI)

No such law exists for Palestinians who lost their land.

In 2013, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Jewish claimants, who subsequently sold the property on to unspecified owners.

An AFP journalist on Tuesday saw young Jewish men moving into the building after the Shamasnehs were escorted out by police.

Fahamiya Shamasneh, 75, told AFP that police arrived before dawn ordering her, her sick husband Ayoub, 84, their son and his family out of the house in the upscale Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, where the couple lived for 53 years.

“What greater injustice is there than this?” she said. “Maybe we will sleep in the street.”

It was the first eviction in the neighborhood since 2009, according to Israeli anti-settlement group Peace Now.

Last year, Israeli authorities evicted an Arab family from its home in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City, following a decision by the Supreme Court that ruled the decades-long tenants had to make way for the building’s Jewish owners.

Israel sees the city as its undivided capital, while the Palestinians want the eastern sector as their future capital.

Palestinian Fahamiya Shamasneh, 75, weeps as Israeli policemen evict her from her family home in the East Jerusalem Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, September 5, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / Ahmad GHARABLI)

Peace Now said the house is part of a larger process of establishing settlements in Sheikh Jarrah.

“Settlers are already inside the Shamasneh family’s home,” it said in a statement Tuesday morning.

“The eviction of the Shamasneh family, who resided in the house since 1964, is not only brutal but it is also indicating a dangerous trend that could threaten a future compromise in Jerusalem,” it said

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism against the State of Palestine (17 – 23 August 2017)

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

Israeli forces continue systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) 

(17 – 23 August 2017)



  • Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child at Za’atarah Checkpoint, south of Nablus.
  • 5 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.


  • Israeli forces conducted 43 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 11 others into Jerusalem and its suburbs.
  • 49 civilians, including 14 children, were arrested in the West Bank.
  • Twenty seven of them, including 11 children, were arrested in Jerusalem.


  • Israeli forces continued to apply the collective punishment policy.
  • A house was blown up in Deir Abu Mesh’al village, northeast of Ramallah.


  • Israeli forces continued efforts to create Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.
  • A house belonging to Abu Sneinah Family was levelled for the second time within 1 week.


  • Israeli forces continued settlement activities in the West Bank.
  • Israeli forces confiscated rooms built of tin plates in Job al-Theeb School, east of Bethlehem.


  • Israeli forces continued to target the Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea.
  • Four shooting incidents were documented against Palestinian fishing boats in the northern Gaza Strip. Neither causalities nor arrests were reported.


  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 10th
  • Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
  • 5 Palestinian civilians were arrested at the checkpoints in the West Bank.
  • Israeli forces arrested a Palestinian worker at Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing in the northern Gaza Strip.





Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (17 – 23 August 2017).




During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian child in the West Bank and wounded 5 civilians, including a child, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Two of them were wounded in the West Bank, and the 3 others were wounded in the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile, Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip continued to chase the Palestinian fishermen in the sea.


In the West Bank, on 19 August 2017, Israeli forces killed Qotayabah Zahran (17) from ‘Alar village, north of Tulkarm.  The abovementioned was walking near a bus station when an Israeli soldier shouted at him to stop.  However, the soldier stationed inside the watchtower established at the checkpoint directly opened fire at Zahran and killed him.  The Israeli forces claimed that the abovementioned child attempted to stab one of the Israeli border guard officers, who were securing the checkpoint, so he was neutralized.


In the same context, during the reporting period, Israeli forces wounded 2 Palestinian civilians after opening fire at them when the Israeli forces moved into Jenin refugee camp, north of the West Bank, to carry out an arrest campaign.


In the Gaza Strip, border areas witnessed protests against the unjust closure imposed on the Gaza population.  During these protests, Israeli forces used force against the protestors, particularly when dispersing them.  As a result, 3 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were wounded.  One of them was wounded with a live bullet to the shoulder while the two others were wounded after being directly hit with sound bombs.


Concerning attacks on fishermen, on 21 August 2017, Israeli gunboats sporadically opened fire at and chased Palestinian fishing boats, northwest of Beit Lahia village, north of the Gaza Strip. The shooting recurred in the abovementioned area on 22 and 23 August 2017.




During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 43 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and 10 ones in Jerusalem. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 49 Palestinian civilians, including 14 children. Twenty seven of them, including 11 children, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem and its suburbs while two children were arrested during a peaceful protest in Qalqiliya.


Collective Punishment Policy:


As part of the Israeli forces’ collective punishment policy against the families of Palestinian civilians who are accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli soldiers or/and settlers.  On 17 August 2017, Israeli forces blew up te first floor of a house belonging to the family of ‘Adel ‘Ankoush in Deir Abu Mesh’al, northwest of Ramallah.  Asa  result, the ground floor sustained severe damage as well as a nearby house.  It should be mentioned that on 16 June 2017 the Israeli forces killed the above-mentioned civilian along with his two friends after a stabbing and shooting attack in occupied Jerusalem, resulting in the killing of an Israeli female soldier.


Efforts to create Jewish Majority in occupied East Jerusalem:


In the context of house demolitions, On 22 August 2017, Israeli Municipality bulldozers demolished a house belonging to ‘Abed al-Kareem Abu Sneinah in al-Bistan neighborhood in Silwan village, south of occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, for the 2nd time within one week. They then demolished the house. It should be noted that on Tuesday, 15 August 2017, the Israeli bulldozers demolished 2 houses belonging to Abu Sneinah family. Within one week, Abu Sinanh family along with activists managed to remove the rubble and re-built the house, but the Israeli forces again demolished the house. The Israeli authorities planned to demolish all the houses in al-Bostan neighborhood in favor of establishing “King Park” on its rubble.


Settlement activities and settler attacks


  • In the context of house demolitions and notices, on 22 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Kherbit Jub al-Theeb, east of Bethlehem. The Israeli forces surrounded Jub al-Theeb Primary School, which was built few days ago by GVC and funded by the European Union. The Israeli forces dismantled the school rooms built of tin plates and carried them to trucks. It should be noted that the Abovementioned School was built after al-Zawahra family donated a 5-dunum plot of land in Beit Ta’mour complex. However, the Israeli authorities notified the residents to stop the construction work in the school under the pretext of non-licensing as it is located in an area under the full Israeli control according to the Oslo Accords.


Restrictions on movement:


Israel continued to impose a tight closure of the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.


The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip, which has been steadily tightened since June 2007 has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.  The Israeli authorities impose measures to undermine the freedom of trade, including the basic needs for the Gaza Strip population and the agricultural and industrial products to be exported. For 9 consecutive years, Israel has tightened the land and naval closure to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, and other countries around the world. This resulted in grave violations of the economic, social and cultural rights and a deterioration of living conditions for 2 million people.  The Israeli authorities have established Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shaloum) as the sole crossing for imports and exports in order to exercise its control over the Gaza Strip’s economy.  They also aim at imposing a complete ban on the Gaza Strip’s exports. The Israeli closure raised the rate of poverty to 65%. Moreover, the rate of unemployment increased up to 47% and youth constitutes 65% of the unemployed persons.  Moreover, 80% of the Gaza Strip population depends on international aid to secure their minimum daily needs. These rates indicate the unprecedented economic deterioration in the Gaza Strip.


In the West Bank, Israeli forces continued to suffocate the Palestinian cities and village by imposing military checkpoints around and/or between them. This created “cantons” isolated from each other that hinders the movement of civilians. Moreover, the Palestinian civilians suffering aggravated because of the annexation wall and checkpoints erected on daily basis to catch Palestinians.





  1. Incursions into Palestinian Areas, and Attacks on Palestinian Civilians and Property in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip


Thursday, 17 August 2017


  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Surif village, west of Hebron. They raided and searched houses belonging to Ahmed ‘Awad al-Qadi, Fadi Mousa Mohammed Ghuneimat, ‘Ali Mohammed Mahmoud Hmedat, and Mohammed Abdul Hadi al-Hour (53) in Batn al-Hawa neighborhood. The soldiers confiscated a car belonging to al-Hour in addition to his ID card and his son’s, Nour (23), and around NIS 600. In al-Saqe’ah neighborhood, Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to the family of Khader Mohammed Ahmed Ghuneimat (58). They confiscated money, and the family lost jewelry. However, no arrests were reported.

Khader Ghuneimat said to PCHR’s field worker:

“At approximately 01:30, I walk up to a sound of heavy knocking on the door. When I opened the door, about 15 soldiers, a police man and female soldier entered the house. They ordered me to bring my ID card. A soldier informed me that they were looking for money belonging to Hamas Movement. My family comprised of 3 daughters was all held in a room in a room. One of my daughters is 11 years old and suffers from autism. I sat in the living room as the soldiers were searching the house and my car that was in the garage. They then moved the family to another room and physically searched them. They then searched my daughters’ rooms for half an hour and then came to the living room. They confiscated around NIS 3986 and JD 190. The confiscated money was written down in a case report, which the soldiers gave me a copy of. After we cleaned up the house, my daughter Ebaa’, whose tuition fees were confiscated, lost a gold necklace with her name on it from her room.”


  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Lutfi Marshoud (25) and then arrested him.


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Dura and Hadab villages and al-Fawar refugee camp in Hebron.


Friday, 18 August 2017


  • At approximately 00:30, Israeli forces moved into Tubas. They raided and searched a house belonging to Radi Omer Saleh Sawaftah (24) and then arrested him.


  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Bethlehem and stationed in al-‘Atan Street in the centre of the city. They raided and searched a house belonging to Majed Mosa Jaber (33) and then arrested him.


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (3) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Yatta and Bani Na’im village in Hebron.; and Howarah village, south of Nablus.


Saturday, 19 August  2017


  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Fajjar village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses after which they handed summonses to 3 civilians to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city. The 3 civilians were identified as Ibrahim Deriyah, Ahmed Se’dah and Ahmed Taqatqa.


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Marah Rabah village, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a number of houses and then handed a summons to Mahmoud Mohammed ‘Amr al-Sheikh to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city.


  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Jenin and its refugee camp. They raided and searched a number of houses. Dozens of young men gathered and threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli forces. The soldiers fired live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them. As a result, a 22-year-old civilian sustained live bullet wound to the right leg, and a 22-year-old civilian sustained live bullet wound to the left leg. The Israeli forces arrested 3 civilians from the camp namely Mohammed Ahmed Abu al-Haija, Mohammed ‘Ar’arawi and Kamal Mohammed ‘Awad. They also handed 2 summonses to Amin and Bahaa’ Mohammed Abu al-Haija to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Salem” military camp, south of the city.


  • At approximately 17:40, Israeli forces stationed at Za’tarah checkpoint, south of Nablus, killed Quteibah Yusuf Zahran (17) from ‘Alar village, north of Tulkarm. Eyewitnesses said to PCHR’s fieldworker that Zahran was walking near a bus station around 200 meters away from the southern side of the abovementioned checkpoint. A soldier shouted at him to stop, but another soldier stationed in the military watchtower directly shot him. An hour later, the child succumbed to serious wounds he sustained. Israeli forces claimed that Zahran attempted to carry out a stab attack against Members of the Border Guard Forces, who were at Za’tarah checkpoint, so he was naturalized.


  • At approximately 18:50, Israeli forces moved into Kafer Qadoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ibrahim Jamal Jom’ah (17) and then arrested him.


Sunday, 20 August  2017


  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into ‘Alar village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched a house belonging to Tareq Zeyad Yusuf Zahran (25) and then arrested him. It should be noted that the abovementioned civilian is brother of Qotaybah Zahran, who was killed by the Israeli forces stationed at Za’tarah checkpoint, south of Nablus in the previous day evening.


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Rashid Sabarnah and then handed him a summons for his son ‘Ali (21) to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of Bethlehem. In the early morning, ‘Ali was arrested after he referred to the Israeli Intelligence Service.


  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Bethlehem and stationed in Shaheen Valley area. They raided and searched a house belonging to Qatibah Saleh Qasem (30) and then handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city.


  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Beit Jala and stationed in al-Jadawel neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Shadi Mohammed Badawnah (25) and then handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city.


  • At approximately 20:50, Israeli forces moved into Kafel Hares village, north of Salfit. They patrolled the village streets under the pretext of protecting settlers visiting the religious tombs. They also announced by loud speakers that they imposed a curfew on the village. They raided and searched a house belonging to Suleiman Mohammed Abu Ya’qoub after they broke a glass door. They then arrested Suleiman’s son, Sari (20).


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (5) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Barta’ah village, southwest of Jenin; Dura, Bani Na’im al-Rayheyah villages and al-Fawar refugee camp in Hebron.


Monday, 21 August 2017


  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli forces moved into Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Zaid Zeyad al-Kharaz (21) in Khelet al-‘Amoud, south of the city, and then arrested him.


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Daheyah neighborhood, southeast of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Fadel Hamed al-Betawi (33) and then arrested him.


  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli forces moved into Madama village, south of Nablus. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Mohammed Salah Sa’id Qet (23) and ‘Obadah Fathi Mustafa Qet (23).


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Deir Abu Mash’al village, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ibrahim Khair Suleiman (29) and then arrested him.


  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into Bethlehem and stationed in Shaheen Valley area. They raided and searched several houses and then handed a summons to Haroun ‘Essa Qasem (31) to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in “Gush Etzion” settlement complex, south of the city.


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a number of houses and then arrested Thaer Ahmed Saqer Salibi (18) and Mukhtar Sa’ed Mahmoud ‘Awad (18).


  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli forces moved into al-Dheishah refugee camp, south of Bethlehem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ja’afar Khalil ‘Obaiyat (28) and then arrested him.


  • Around the same time, Israeli forces moved into al-Fawar refugee camp, south of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Walid Ahmed Teti (44) and the arrested him.


  • At approximately 07:35, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (6) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: ‘Asirah northern village, north of Nablus; Sela al-Thaher village, south of Jenin; Kafer Thuluth village, east of Qalqiliyah; Sa’ir, al-Hadab villages and al-Fawar refugee camp in Hebron.


Tuesday, 22 August 2017


  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into the southern area in Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Khalid Ibrahim Abu Turki (45) and then arrested him.


  • At approximately 05:45, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. They also fired flare bombs and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported.


Note: During the aforementioned day, Israeli forces conducted (4) incursions in the following areas and no arrests were reported: Qalqiliyah and ‘Azoun village, east of the city, and al-Thaheriyah and al-Majd villages in Hebron.


Wednesday, 23 August 2017


  • At approximately 05:15, Israeli gunboats stationed offshore, northwest of Beit Lahia village in the northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. They also fired flare bombs and chased them. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives, but neither casualties nor material damage were reported. The Israeli forces opened fire again at approximately 07:50 on the same day morning.



Demonstrations in protest against the annexation wall and settlement activities


West Bank:


  • Following the Friday prayer on 18 August 2017, dozens of Palestinian civilians and Israeli and international human rights defenders organized protests in Bil’in and Ni’lin villages, west of Ramallah; al-Nabi Saleh village, northwest of the city, and Kafer Qadoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah. Israeli forces forcibly dispersed the protesters, firing live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs. They also chased protesters into olive fields and between the houses. As a result, some of the protesters suffered tear gas inhalation while others sustained bruises as Israeli soldiers beat them up.


  • At approximately 16:30 on the same Friday, Palestinian civilians organized a protest in the center of Qalqiliyah. They made their way to “Eyal” checkpoint established on the green line between Qalqiliya and Israel, northeast of the city. The protesters threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed there. The soldiers fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them and chased them. They arrested 2 civilians, including a child, namely Laith yusuf (16) and Ahmed ‘Adel al-Haj Hasan (22).


Gaza Strip:


  • At approximately 16:00 on the same Friday, 18 August 2017, dozens of Palestinian civilians gathered near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, in response to calls for protests in the border area against the Israeli measures in occupied Jerusalem. A number of the young men set fire to tires and threw stones at the Israeli forces stationed along the abovementioned border fence. The soldiers fired live bullets, tear gas canisters and rubber-coated metal bullets at them. The clashes continued until approximately 20:00 on the same day. As a result, a 20-year-old civilian, from al-Tuffah neighborhood, sustained a live bullet wound to the left shoulder; a 24-year-old civilian from Sheikh Redwan neighborhood in Gaza was hit with a tear gas canister to the back; and a 16-year-old civilian, from Jabalia, was hit with a tear gas canister to the chest.

(PCHR keeps the name of the wounded civilians)


Collective Punishment:


  • As part of the collective punishment policy adopted by the Israeli forces against the Palestinian civilians accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli soldiers or/and settlers, on Thursday dawn, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces demolished a house belonging to ‘Adel Hasan Ahmed ‘Ankoush in Deir Abu Mesh’al village, northwest of Ramallah. ‘Ankoush was killed by the Israeli forces on 16 June 2017.


According to PCHR’s investigation and eyewitnesses’ accounts, at approximately 02:00 on Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces backed by several military jeeps and an engineering unit moved into Deir Abu Mesh’al village, northwest of Ramallah. They then surrounded a 2-storey house belonging to the family of ‘Adel Hasan Ahmed ‘Ankoush. The house was built on an area of 150 square meters, sheltering 6 members, including 4 children. Many soldiers raided the second floor in the house while the engineering unit planted explosives inside and blew it up. As a result, the ground floor sustained serious damage in addition to a nearby house belonging to Mustafa Sobhi Far as the bedroom wall collapsed.


It should be noted that on 16 June 2017, the Israeli forces killed ‘Adel and two of his friends namely Bara’a Ibrahim Saleh ‘Ata and Osama Ahmed Dahdouh ‘Ata from Deir Abu Mesh’al  village, after they carried out a stab and shooting attack against al-Sultan Suleiman Street at the northern entrance to Bab al-Amoud (Damascus Gate) in East Jerusalem. The attack caused the death of an Israeli female soldier. Moreover, the Israeli forces raided the houses of the 3 killed civilians on 17 June 2017 and orally informed them of the demolition decision of their houses after they took thir measurements.


  1. Continued closure of the oPt


Israel continued to impose a tight closure on the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.


Gaza Strip


Israeli forces continuously tighten the closure of the Gaza Strip and close all commercial crossings, making the Karm Abu Salem crossing the sole commercial crossing of the Gaza Strip, although it is not suitable for commercial purposes in terms of its operational capacity and distance from markets.

Israeli forces have continued to apply the policy, which is aimed to tighten the closure on all commercial crossings, by imposing total control over the flow of imports and exports.


Israeli forces have continued to impose a total ban on the delivery of raw materials to the Gaza Strip, except for very limited items and quantities. The limited quantities of raw materials allowed into Gaza do not meet the minimal needs of the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.


Israeli forces also continued to impose an almost total ban on the Gaza Strip exports, including agricultural and industrial products, except for light-weighted products such as flowers, strawberries, and spices. However, they lately allowed the exportation of some vegetables such as cucumber and tomatoes, furniture and fish.


Israel has continued to close the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing for the majority of Palestinian citizens from the Gaza Strip. Israel only allows the movement of a limited number of groups, with many hours of waiting in the majority of cases. Israel has continued to adopt a policy aimed at reducing the number of Palestinian patients allowed to move via the Beit Hanoun crossing to receive medical treatment in hospitals in Israel or in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Israel also continued applying the policy of making certain civilian traveling via the crossing interviewed by the Israeli intelligence service to be questioned, blackmailed or arrested.


Movement at Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, southeast of Rafah, is designated for the movement of goods


Movement at Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, southeast of Rafah, is designated for the movement of goods

Date Imports
Category Amount
Tons Number Liters
07 August Various goods 3526
Humanitarian aid 16034
Cooking gas 292,410
Benzene 190,039
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 189,97938,000
Construction aggregates 11320
Cement 2680
Construction steel 228
08 August



Various goods 3484
Humanitarian aid 15800
Cooking gas 296,210
Benzene 114,023
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 151,93276,000
Construction aggregates 11760
Cement 2960
Construction steel 413
09 August Various goods 3155
Humanitarian aid 1516
Cooking gas 298,630
Benzene 75,986
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 189,95838.474
Construction aggregates 11120
Cement 3080
Construction steel 530
Various goods 4397
Humanitarian aid 13101
Cooking gas 292,820
Benzene 38,002
Diesel for UNRWA 74,650
10 August Construction aggregates 8760
Cement 3040
Construction steel 712
Various goods 3712
Humanitarian aid 15681
Cooking gas 294,590
Benzene 151,990
DieselDiesel for UNRWA


13 August Construction aggregates 12360
Cement 2360
Construction steel 487
Various goods 4638
Humanitarian aid 15497
14 August Cooking gas 297,400
Benzene 192,072
Diesel 1,165,927
Construction aggregates 10600
Cement 2780
Construction steel 555
Various goods 3589
Humanitarian aid 14200
Cooking gas 293,030
Benzene 78,018
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 903,21575,991


15 August Construction aggregates 9800
Cement 3240
Construction steel 582

16 August

Various goods 3918
Humanitarian aid 14730
Cooking gas 289,718
BenzeneBenzene for UNRWA 152,06338,000
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 851,99538,000
Construction aggregates 11280
Cement 1800
Construction steel 816
Various goods 4519
17August Humanitarian aid 14813
Cooking gas 295,664
Benzene 302,123
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 859,96375,992
Construction aggregates 10920
Cement 2960
Construction steel 863
Various goods 3901
20 August Humanitarian aid 16306
Cooking gas 297,740
Benzene 152,010
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 674,84738,000
Construction aggregates 13240
Cement 2040
Construction steel 580
Various goods 3944
21 August Humanitarian aid 17625
Cooking gas 288,580
Benzene 156,026
DieselDiesel for UNRWA 1,022,76376,015
Construction aggregates 13040
Cement 3160
Construction steel 712




On Monday, 07 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of a truckload of vegetable.

On Wednesday, 09 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 2 truckloads of vegetables, 2 truckloads of fish and a truckload of clothes.

On Thursday, 10 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of a truckload of vegetables.

On Sunday, 13 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 0.64 tons cucumbers; 0.6 tons of fish; 14 tons of eggplants; 13.3 tons of sweet potatoes; and 0.8 tons of sweet peppers.

On Monday, 14 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 4.48 tons of tomatoes; 3.6 tons of eggplants; and 0.75 tons of fish.

On Wednesday, 16 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 10.2 tons of tomatoes; 0.6 tons of fish; 14.5 tons of sweet potatoes; 1.4 tons of peppers; and 0.8 tons of eggplants.

On Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 6 tons of tomatoes; 13 tons of furniture and 6 tons of clothes.

On Sunday, 20 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 4 truckloads of vegetables and a truckload of animals’ skin.

On Monday, 21 August 2017, Israeli forces allowed the exportation of 3 truckloads of vegetables; 3 truckloads of Aluminum scrap and a truckload of tomatoes.



Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing, in the north of the Gaza Strip, is designated for the movement of individuals, and links the Gaza Strip with the West Bank.


Movement at Beit Hanoun (“Erez”) crossing

(15-21 August 2017)

Category 15 August 16 August 17 August 18 August 19 August  20August  21August
Patients 44 37 37 1 71 52
Companions 37 36 33 1 62 49
Personal needs 32 50 37 5 143 45
Familiesof prisoners 31
Arabs fromIsrael 5 7 8 8 8 1
International journalists
International workers 35 39 32 8 1 12
Travelersabroad 65 6
Business people 121 127 106 3 199 126
Business meetings
Security interviews 4 4 5 6
VIPs 1 2
Ambulances to Israel 5 5 2 1 4 2
Patients’ Companions 4 5 2 1 4 2


Israeli Forces Arrest Palestinian Worker at Beit Hanoun “ Erez” Crossing


  • At approximately 10:00 on Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Israeli forces stationed at Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing, northwest of Beit Hanoun, north of the Gaza Strip, arrested Ayman Rafiq Abdul Razek Hamad (43), from Beit Hanoun. Ayman has been working at the crossing for more than 20 years and is married with ten children. Ayman’s son, Isma’il, said that the Palestinian Liaison Office of the General Authority for Civil Affairs officially informed them at approximately 16:30 on the same day that his father is under arrest, without identifying the reasons. It should be noted that Ayman’s job at Erez Crossing is to carry travelers’ luggage from the Palestinian side to the Israeli’s.


Israel has imposed a tightened closure on the West Bank. During the reporting period, Israeli forces imposed additional restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians:


  • Hebron: Israeli forces established (19) checkpoints all over the city.

On Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the entrances to Sa’ir, Bait Ummer and Sureef villages.

On Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the entrances to Ethna village, Kharsa road and at the entrance to al-Fawar refugee camp.

On Saturday, 19 August 2017, 3 similar checkpoints were established on Beit ‘Awaa- Wad Risha road; at the entrance to Tarama village and on al-Nabi Yunis road, east of Halhoul village.

On Sunday, 20 August 2017, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the northern entrance to Yatta village and at the entrance to Sa’ir village.

On Monday, 21 August 2017,  4 similar checkpoints were established at the entrance to al-Fahs road, at the entrance to Beit Kahel, at the western entrance to Hebron and on Khelit al-Maiyyah road, east of Yatta.

On Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to Beit Ummer, Ethna, Beit ‘Awaa and al-Moreq villages.



Qalqiliyia: Israeli forces established (12) checkpoints all over the city.

At approximately 12:15 on Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint between ‘Azoun and ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb villages, east of Qalqilayia.

At approximately 17:00, a similar checkpoint was established at the entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of the city.

At approximately 08:00 on Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint under the bridge of ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqilyia.

On Saturday, 19 August 2017, Israeli forces established 5 checkpoints at the entrance to Kafur Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyia (established twice); at the entrance to ‘Azoun village ( was established twice) and at the entrance to ‘Izbit al-Tabeeb village, east of the city.

On Monday, 21 August 2017, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the eastern entrance to Qalqilyia (established twice), at the entrance to Hiblah village, and at the entrance to Jeet village, northeast of the city.


Salfit: Israeli forces established (6) checkpoints all over the city.


At approximately 14:00 on Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint under the bridge of Askaka village, east of Salfit.

At approximately 20:50 on Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint between Kaful Hares and Hares village, north of Salfit.

At approximately 22:30, a similar checkpoint was established under the bridge of Askaka village, east of the city.

At approximately 11:30 on Saturday, 19 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint under the bridge of Askaka village, east of Salfit.

At approximately 19:40, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Salfit.

At approximately 21:00 on Monday, 21 August 2017, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the entrances to Deir Balout and al-Zawiyia villages, west of Salfit.




On Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints throughout the city. The first checkpoint was established near al-Hadad village, east of Jenin; the second one was established on Jenin-Nablus street; the third one was established in the vicinity of Ya’boud and ‘Orabah villages, southwest of the city.


Arrests at Military Checkpoints:


  • At approximately 18:00 on Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces stationed at a military checkpoint in Hebron, arrested Anas Ibrahim Mohamed Qat (21), from Madamah village, south of Nablus. Anas was on a trip with his family to Hebron. In the meantime, the Israeli forces stopped the family, checked their IDs and then arrested Anas.
  • At approximately 07:30 on Monday, 21 August 2017, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the intersection of al-Nabi Salah village, northwest of Ramallah. They stopped Palestinian vehicles and checked civilians’ IDs. In the meantime, they arrested Mohamed Faied ‘Arqoub (18), from Kafur ‘Ain village, northwest of the city.
  • On Wednesday, 24 August 2017, Israeli forces, who were patrolling in the vicinity of Daniel settlement, south of al-Khadir village, south of Bethlehem, arrested 3 Palestinian civilians while they were at the southern entrance to the village. The arrested persons were identified as Reziq Shehadah Salah (44), Ashraf Mahmoud Salah (39), and Museed Suliman Salah (37).



Efforts to Create Jewish majority


Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it:


  • Arrests and Incursions:


  • At 01:00 on Thursday, 17 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Mohamed ‘Arafat Abu al-Hamam (19), ‘Odai Samer Abu Tayieh (19), and Abed al-Raheem al-‘Abasi (33).


  • At approximately 02:00 on Friday, 18 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohamed Mansour al-‘Abasi (17) and arrested him.



  • At approximately 10:00 on Saturday, 19 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Silwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohamed Hisham al-Qaq (22) and handed him a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in al-Nabi Ya’qoub police station, north of the city.


  • At approximately 01:00 on Sunday, 20 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Issawiyia village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Mohamed Monther ‘Atiyiah (15), Mohamed Thaier Mahmoud (16) and Mahmoud Adeib Abu al-Humus (14).


  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Hizmah village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Mohamed Fawzi al-Khatib (20), Abdullah Abed Rabu al-Khatib (21), ‘Ahed Salem ‘Askar (19), Ahmed Waheed al-Khatib(21), and Abdullah Ahmed al-Khatib(20).


  • At approximately 13:00 on Sunday, Israeli forces handed al-Sheikh Nour al-Deen Ishaq al-Rajbi (54) a summons to refer to the Israeli Intelligence Service in al-Maskobiyia police center in West Jerusalem, in order to question him. At approximately 08:00 on Monday, 21 August 2017, the Israeli forces arrested al-Rajabi when he attended al-Mascoubiyia center and questioned him. At approximately 22:00 on the same day, Nour al-Deen was released, but he was forcibly deported from al-‘Aqsa Mosque for one week. This summons handed to al-Sheikh al-Rajabi is the 3rd summons within one month. It should be noted that the Israeli forces previously arrested al Rajabi and beat him up in the vicinity of al-Asbat (Lion Gate).


  • At approximately 00:00 on Monday, 21 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood, east of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdullah Jamal Ma’arjah (17) and arrested him.


  • At approximately 01:00 on Monday, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Izariyia village, east of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Hasan Ashraf Abu al-Reesh (17) and arrested him.


  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli forces moved into al-‘Issawiyia village, northeast of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested 4 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children. The arrested persons were identified as Mahmoud Adib Abu Humus (14), Mohamed Monther ‘Atiyiah (15), Mohamed Thaier Suliman (16) and Ali Hasan Muhasin (19).


  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli forces moved into Badow village, northwest of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Adham Mohamed Saleh Badwan and Saleh Kassab ‘Ayyash.


  • At approximately 16:00 on Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Israeli forces raided and searched a house belonging to Mohamed Fahmi Faroukh in ‘Ain al-Louza neighborhood in Silwan village, south of occupied Jerusalem. They also arrested Mohamed’s daughter, Heba (15), and took her to an unknown destination. Fahmi Faroukh, Mohamed’s father, said that the Israeli forces accompanied with Israeli Intelligence officers and sniffer dogs raided his son’s house and prevented anyone from entering it. In the meantime, they beat up all the house residents. As a result, Mohamed’s wife sustained a toe fracture and was then taken to receive medical treatment. Moreover, the Israeli forces attacked Fahim’s grandchild, Yazan (14). Fahmi added that the Israeli forces damaged all the house contents and arrested his son, Mohamed, his grandchild, Heba, without showing either the search or arrest warrant.


  • At approximately 01:30 on Wednesday, 23 August 2017, Israeli forces moved into Badow village, northwest of occupied Jerusalem. They raided and searched houses from which they arrested Yousef Khalid Dar al-Shaiekh, Ahmed Husain al-Shaiekh, Mohamed Falah al-Shaiekh and Abdullah Kamal al-Shaiekh.


  • House Demolitions:


  • On Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Israeli Municipality bulldozers demolished a house belonging to ‘Abed al-Kareem Abu Sneinah in al-Bostan neighborhood in Silwan village, south of occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, for the 2nd time within one week. Silwan village’s residents said that the Israeli forces accompanied with Israeli vehicles and Israeli Municipality crews moved into al-Bostan neighborhood, surrounded the under-construction house of Abu Sneinah family, and demolished it.

It should be noted that, on Tuesday, 15 August 2017, the Israeli bulldozers demolished 2 houses belonging to Abu Sneinah family. During one week, Abu Sinanh family along with activists removed the rubble and re-built the house, but the Israeli forces demolished the house again. The Israeli authorities planned to demolish all houses in al-Bostan neighborhood in favor of establishing “King Park” as since 2005, the Israeli authorities have distributed notices to residents. Over the past period, the residents were able to delay and abolish demolition orders through popular campaigns and legal proceedings. All the decisions are in effect now after the Israeli the municipality rejected all the plans submitted by the residents.


  • Israeli settlers’ attacks against Palestinian civilians and property


  • At approximately 19:00 on Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Israeli forces accompanied with around 30 military vehicles and mounted-crane trucks moved into Kherbit Jub al-Deeb, east of Bethelehm, which is located in Beit Ta’mour residential complex. The Israeli forces surrounded Jub al-Deeb Primary School, which was built of tin plates few days ago by GVC and funded the EU. The Israeli forces dismantled the tin plates and carried them to the truck. The Israeli forces stationed in the area until 00:00, during which, the village residents attempted to prevent the Israeli forces from stationing in the area. As a result, the Israeli forces fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters at the residents and then detained them in a far place until the military vehicles withdrew.

It should be noted that the Abovementioned School was built after Zawahra family donated a five-and-a-half-dunum plot of land in the centre of the Beit Ta’mour complex. The school administration was informed by the Israeli authorities to stop construction work in the school under the pretext of non-licensing. However, the project was completed, and six out of eight caravans were placed one day before the beginning of the new school year. Khirbet Jub al-Deeb is located in an area under the full Israeli control, so its residents should obtain permits from the Israeli Civil Administration to enable them to build and use the land for any purpose. This is considered impossible because of the impossible conditions imposed by the Israeli authorities in this regard, not to mention the Israeli Civil Administration’s policy of deliberately neglecting planning and developing the Palestinian villages located within the ‘C’ areas such as Jub al-Deeb to force its residents to leave voluntarily and move from their lands and villages to other areas. In the past years, the Israeli authorities have tightened their grip on the village residents to force them to leave, targeting three houses belonging to the residents under the pretext of non-licensing. Moreover, five other families left the village because they were deprived of their rights in the village and forced them to live in other areas. The rest of the village’s houses are still under threat because of non- licensing.


Recommendations to the International Community


PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 10 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.


  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC in 2017 to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area
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