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Wasteland in al Walajeh: Israeli military destruction of farmland

7 September 2011 | International Solidarity Movement, West Bank

On Tuesday September  6th local Palestinians from the village of Al Walajeh gathered with international activists to protest the building of the illegal separation barrier as well as the destruction of ancient olive trees. The demonstrators succeeded in halting the razing of Palestinian land for approximately one hour before soldiers violently broke up the protest arresting one Palestinian and one Israeli activist.

On September 5th bulldozers protected by dozens of soldiers arrived at 4 AM and uprooted 50 olive trees that date back at least 100 years. The bulldozers also destroyed 18 almond trees, 27 pine trees, and 8 fruit trees. The destruction took place in an area of over 1 square mile and was declared a closed military zone, prohibiting media coverage of the devastating operation.

Mohammed Al-Atrash (Abu Wajih), the elderly farmer who owned the trees, will receive no compensation for his loss.

In the aftermath residents of Al Walajeh called for a presence of media and activists to highlight this illegal destruction carried out by the Israeli government. At approximately 10am on Tuesday several residents from the village, joined by ISM and other activists, walked down to the site of the olive grove, which is now a wasteland. Upon arriving they stood in front of the construction machines and forced them to halt their work.

Soldiers declared the area a closed military zone and disbanded the protest by force within an hour. Yousif Shakawi, a local resident in his 50’s was arrested along with one Israeli activist. The remaining protesters were held at distance so that the work could resume.

The trees were destroyed in preparation for the building of the illegal Israeli apartheid wall which is planned to run several hundred metres inside the 1967 green line, effectively seizing hundreds of dunnums of land from around Al Walajeh. If the Israeli government succeeds in completing the wall along the planned route the village will be surrounded on three sides with the army controlling entrance and exit to the village.

Sheerin Alaraj, who has lived in Al Walajeh all her life, explained to us that construction of the wall was continuing in spite of an on going appeal process in the Israeli high court with a ruling expected September 27th .  However Sheerin has little confidence in the process as she explained to us “the court is just an extension of the military arm of Israel.”

In 2004 the International Court of Justice declared that the apartheid wall is illegal and Israel should tear it down immediately and compensate the victims. In spite of this ruling Israel has continued construction of the wall which annexes 8.5% of the entire West Bank territory. Since 2000 Israel has destroyed approximately 330,000 olive trees in the West Bank and Gaza. There is currently a campaign to boycott Caterpillar Inc. for its role in supplying the Israeli government with equipment used to enforce the occupation.

As the time for harvesting olives nears and Israeli military and settlers continue to destroy the main agricultural pillar of Palestinian culture and livelihood, International Solidarity Movement will be actively working throughout the harvesting season to safeguard Palestinians and assist in harvesting despite this and other events that have threatened security and access to Palestinian farmland. For more information on ISMs Olive Harvest Campaign, visit our website.

September 7, 2011 - Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Solidarity and Activism

2 Comments »

  1. Israels harvest is coming soon. You must google: FearInc. this is a group of racist anti muslims funded by the Koch Brothers with billions to lie and deceive the american people. Frank Gaffney, Emerson, Dershowitz and other right wing hate speechers are using this money to inflame americans against ALL muslims in the US. This vile group of right wing Israelie firsters have distorted views so much that states like Oklahoma legislated against Sharia Law. These racists are inflaming the right wing legislators all over the country, into thinking we the american people must be fearful of every muslim. The race baiting has been exposed by the Center for American Progress and Think Progress. I urge you all to google this group and see their hatefilled, racist views. Israel is obviously terrrifed as more of the american people (with internet access) are not reading the corporate owned zionist media supporters of Israel. Today, even the Washington Post readership are on to the antics of the editors at WAPO. Whenever an article pro Israel comes up, the citizens subscribed are commenting factually about Israel. It can only mean that zionists are more terrified of the truth than ever before.

    Further, I received an email yesterday from a group identifying themselves as Radical Islam When I opened it I discovered it was from zionists, urging Jews, Christian Evangelicals and others to go to the UN in NY to oppose the Durban Conference on Racism. Turns out that conference is about Israelie racism. The zionists will use any and all ways to persuade the american people that Israel is the only democracy in the middle east and the american people must support our “ally”. Even today there are more and more Generals and high officials who have a different opinion. Robert Gates made a statement about Israel being “ungrateful”! Pakalert a online group (zionist run) claim that Obama, Clinton are receiving money from Hamas? These zionists will stoop lower than the bottom of the ocean to put fear into our people. But, the world is catching on…Israel’s harvest is coming very soon.

    Comment by spktruth200 | September 7, 2011 | Reply

  2. [...] Wasteland in al Walajeh: Israeli military destruction of farmland aletho | September 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Categories: Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Solidarity and Activism | URL: http://wp.me/pIUmC-81s [...]

    Pingback by Wasteland in al Walajeh: Israeli military destruction of farmland « MasterAdrian's Weblog | September 7, 2011 | Reply


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