A Palestinian mayor issues desperate appeal to the world to restore his village’s lifeline

on 22 Comments
Haj Sami Sadiq, at destroyed road last October

Yesterday the Israeli army again destroyed roads linking Al Aqaba in the Jordan Valley (Area C) to neighboring villages.  This is the letter Mayor Haj Sami Sadiq wrote yesterday. His update of conditions is near the end…. 

We, the 300 residents of the community of Al Aqaba, which has been in existence for generations, owners and inhabitants of the land even before the entrance of the IDF, are addressing you as a last resort. For decades Israeli soldiers used the village as, a training area a playground where live ammunition was used, which took the lives of 8 of our people and injured 38. Amongst them the head of our municipality Haj Sami Sadik, who as a result is now paralyzed from the waist down .

Despite those acts of aggression, we have never resorted to violence, no terrorism has come from our people, no stone was ever thrown and we continue to call for coexistence and peace. In 2003, after petitioning the Supreme Court, the training camp was evacuated from the village only to have the civil administration place demolition orders on most of our buildings in 2004. Included in these demolition orders were the mosque, kindergarten and local health clinic with the rationalization that these structures were built without permission. In area C, which comprises more than 60% of the west bank, including Al Aqaba, the civil administration has rejected 94% of building permits requested by Palestinians. Meanwhile, Israeli settlements have been expanding at an accelerated rate. In 2007 we brought a demand to the Supreme Court for the cancellation of demolition orders, as well as presenting a renewed zoning plan for the community. In response the civil administration offered to approve permits for the small central area where most of the public facilities are located, but more than half of the residential areas would continue to have demolition orders outstanding. This offer excludes the residential area where most of our population’s homes stand, as well as all of the cultivated land. Obviously this is in contrast to Israel’s obligation as an occupying force, which according to article 43 of the Hague International humanitarian law must “restore and ensure public order and safety” in the occupied territory.

Today April 18th 2012 at 11:00 am IDF soldiers accompanied by private contractors appeared without with out prior notification to demolish 2 access roads to the town, named “Road of Peace” and Road of Displacement”. The roads we build with our own hands in order to exercise our right to freedom of movement. These roads are part of our lifeline, as our sole source of income relies on our ability to move our agricultural goods to the market. This is the 3rd time that the “Road of Peace” has been demolished. On all of the previous occasions we did not take any action. This time the demolition came with a threat. An abusive officer in a jeep numbered 65539 advised our Mayor that he will return for larger scale demolitions in retribution for the observation of the road demolitions by internationals. These threats were made to a man who is in a wheel chair urging away the small group of less than 10 curious individuals. We are upset and disconcerted that our children witnessed this atrocity and fear for the psychological effects that it may have on them in the future.

We, the community of Al Aqaba, our international and Israeli guests, are calling for you to visit and see for yourself the harsh conditions we are forced to live through daily as a result of this harassment. Please help us circulate these words and help us live in peace. Citizens of Al Aqaba

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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22 Responses

  1. eljay
    April 19, 2012, 11:19 am

    So, it’s business as usual in (and outside of) the glorious Jewish state.

    • seafoid
      April 19, 2012, 3:27 pm

      Hevenu shalom aleichum

      and if you don’t agree you get a rifle butt in the face

      • Dan Crowther
        April 19, 2012, 4:43 pm

        fckin seafoid! haha.

        “we will never forgive them for making us smash them in the face with our rifles”


      • seafoid
        April 20, 2012, 5:45 am

        You antisemite !

        Our tradition, places the relentless pursuit of peace amongst the highest of our aspirations. The Talmud, in Tractate Derech Eretz Zuta, devotes an entire chapter to exalting peace as a Jewish value. Hillel the sage instructs us to be “like the students of Aharon, to love peace and chase after it” (Avot 1:12). And in the Midrash (Bamidbar Rabbah 21:1) Rabbi Shimon Ben Halufta says, “There is no vessel of greater blessing than peace,” and quotes, in that context, the famous verse from Psalms (29:11): “May God give His people strength, may God bless his people with peace.” The list of Jewish sources embracing peace is almost countless

      • Dan Crowther
        April 20, 2012, 9:03 am


      • seafoid
        April 20, 2012, 1:42 pm

        I think a Mondo trip to Israel would be magnificent. See the meltdown in the flesh.

      • Dan Crowther
        April 21, 2012, 6:02 pm


  2. pabelmont
    April 19, 2012, 11:24 am

    Why this? Has not the world established by its practice — if not always by its words — that Israel is the master, the legitimate master, of any territory anywhere on earth (or mars or moon) that it cares to occupy militarily? And that its acts, together and severally, are always and in all circumstances, correct and unobjectionable? Israel is not a bully in the playground to be punished, but is the director of the playground. And it learned the arts of “direction” from people who did not fool around, nosir.

    To whom, then, is this pitiful missive directed? A message in a bottle floated upon the sea.

  3. rensanceman
    April 19, 2012, 11:38 am

    One of the many ugly faces of Zionism being exhibited. No remorse, ruthless, pure evil—-all acts immunized by their quest for Manifest Destiny and blessed as pay back to the world for allowing the Holocaust to occur. The Palestinians are merely”rocks in the road ” sometimes confused with “beasts who walk on two legs”.

  4. Kathleen
    April 19, 2012, 12:20 pm

    Thanks Phil..spreading

  5. Kathleen
    April 19, 2012, 12:22 pm

    Anyone else want to ask Chris Hayes and team to mention this on his Sat or Sunday news program
    Now We Know (April 21)
    By Brett Brownell

    Wed Apr 18, 2012 12:33 PM CDT

    What local or national stories caught your eye this week?

    Submit your ideas to “Up” and we may feature your story suggestion during Saturday’s Now We Know.

    To submit your story ideas, email us at [email protected] with a subject line “Now We Know”, or post a comment below. Please include link(s) to the story so we can verify authenticity, and be sure to tell us how you’d like to be credited if we choose your Now We Know suggestion.

    • Emma
      April 19, 2012, 6:09 pm

      I did, though I don’t watch American television so I have no idea about that show.

      This is the horror of what the Zionists are doing in Palestine. Diabolical, patient, long-term crushing.

      Using the village as a “training ground” for decades, wantonly killing and shooting the residents.

      They are not just a dark menace to the Middle East, but to the world.

      Thank you, Phil.

  6. LanceThruster
    April 19, 2012, 1:33 pm

    On the 1 to 10 creepy scale, this rates an 11.

  7. justicewillprevail
    April 19, 2012, 2:56 pm

    Beyond disgusting. The cruelty and calculated sadism of Israel is a dark menace in the Middle East. How anyone can defend this kind of fascism is a mystery, though thousands will try, through the lens of their denial. What a legacy of shame they are leaving behind.

  8. ritzl
    April 19, 2012, 4:42 pm

    And hasbarists repeat incredibly, but apparently with a straight face, that the “different standards of living” is somehow an innocuous and/or natural condition.

    Disgusting. The practice and the propaganda. All of it. It won’t succeed.

  9. yourstruly
    April 19, 2012, 6:36 pm

    re: “the abusive office in jeep #65539 advised our mayor that he’ll return for larger scale demolitions in retribution for observation of the road demolitions by internationalists”

    speak up
    non people
    & for sure we’ll grind you down

    keep silent
    non people
    still we’ll grind you into the ground

    as for international observers just say no
    lest they bare witness to something we do that’s bad
    you know this drives us mad

    cause it’s best the world never finds out
    brutality towards the native
    what conquest’s all about

  10. Chu
    April 19, 2012, 10:06 pm

    Terrible story. This is what we support? I am disgusted.
    It’s sad to note that Israel is creating it’s own demise,
    even if people in Tel Aviv don’t wish to accept it, or Americans
    who have the right of return. It’s rotten…

    • Miss Costello
      April 20, 2012, 7:58 am

      Chu) “It’s sad to note that Israel is creating it’s own demise”,
      What’s ‘sad’ about it? Their choice. Nobody’s holding a gun to THEIR head: unlike the Palestinians, who’ve endured living under the isra-hel jackboot for over six decades. Now THAT’S sad.

  11. Miss Costello
    April 20, 2012, 7:37 am

    And where pray are those two defenders of the indefensible? Fred Bloggs and friend, Mayhem, with their ‘views’ on this? The silence is deafening…

    but give it time, no doubt.

    BTW. Thank you Mondoweiss, for this so sad, but excellent, informative article – and all that you do.

  12. piotr
    April 20, 2012, 9:23 am

    I always thought that Netanyahu will come with new conditions for Palestinians would they agree to recognize “the right of Israel to exists as a Jewish State”. A logical next step would be to recognize “the right of Israel to exists as a Creepy Jewish State”. Likewise, visitors to Israel should sign a declaration “I shall never object to any acts of the Jewish State of Israel, however creepy they may be”. They should also give a credit card number, to be charged 100,000 shekels for every act of objection.

    Creepy state needs a creepy ideology, and where to find more lucid explanations but in the comment sections in Arutz Sheva and Jerusalem Post!? I observed a story from Genesis 34 that was cited both by the defenders of the right of the Jewish State to be creepy and by the objectors. Dinah daugher of Jacob was raped or seduced by a son of a headman of a Canaan village Shechem, and the culprit offered to marry Dinah, and she did not object (so perhaps it was a seduction). Brothers of Dinah agreed on the condition that all men of Shechem get circumcision, and as they were disabled, Simeon and Levy killed all of them. Later Jacob berated them etc.

    The rare objectors to the actions of the State of Israel cite this as an example of what should not be done. But the bulk of comments is drawn to the opposite conclusion: this is how we should defend ourself. After all, Jacob did not berate Simeon and Levy for doing something inherently wrong, but:

    ‘You have brought trouble on me by making me odious to the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites; my numbers are few, and if they gather themselves against me and attack me, I shall be destroyed, both I and my household.’

    So the conclusion is that as long as our numbers and weapons are better, this is the moral model. THIS IS WHAT THEY WRITE!!! And given the amount of brain gray matter they exhibit, I guess that this interpretation comes from some rabbis and not some theological musing of soccer ultras.

    Insane as it may be, now Jews can bestride the same hills as described in the Torah and re-enact their favorite Biblical stories. Molding their destiny according to their 4000 years of history. It is really fascinating for an agnostic to read how religion can guide our actions. Firm foundation for moral values and all that crap.

    Torah is curiously enigmatic in places like Genesis 36. Was the deed of Simeon and Levy merely reckless, given the balance of forces at the time, or an abomination against Noahide laws? The advocates of the latter pointed that Simeon and Levy were a pair of thugs who threw their own brother to the bottom of a well. The reply was that one should praise them for the good deeds and criticize for the bad.

    Perhaps the writer of Torah assumed that if you cannot tell right from wrong in a story like that there is no hope for you. Or he was genuinely creepy. Who is the orthodox ( = on the true path) and who is the heretic (who should go to the bottom of a well)?

  13. aiman
    April 20, 2012, 10:09 am

    These are Indigenous people. Can no world leader hear their story? Human beings, particularly those professing humane values, are a backward lot. This is a historic chance to act against injustice, the injustice that wracked Australia with the Intervention. This also indicates the impotence and schizophrenia of modern day liberalism that expresses compassion and cruelty simultaneously. Gillard talks about “peace” for Indigenous people we slaughtered and oppress and Gillard talks about Israel making the desert bloom: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/fiscal-discipline-the-right-call-julia-gillard/story-fn59niix-1226259572737

    “Decades after the desert was first made to bloom, Israel is a place where ideas still bloom.”

  14. gamal
    April 20, 2012, 12:06 pm

    well the mukhtar of aqaba must have blood on his hands or at the very least somewhere below the bullet hole the IOF put in him, zionism the say anything ideology.

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