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Israel orders new demolitions for Bedouin community located in strategic Jerusalem corridor

on 10 Comments

On August 3, 2015, a group of Israeli army vehicles and several Israeli Civil Administration representatives distributed seven demolition orders to the Bedouin community of Jabal al-Baba, north of al-Ezariya (Bethany) in the Eastern Jerusalem governorate of the West Bank.

Jabal al-Baba’s position between East Jerusalem and the expansive Ma’ale Adumim settlement puts it at the heart of Israeli authorities’ E1 settlement plan. The plan aims to link settlements around Jerusalem, at once consolidating Israel’s illegal annexation of East Jerusalem and separating the north of the West Bank from the south. Home demolitions and forced displacement of Bedouins in the area are the plan’s expected next steps.

Homes and other structures in Israeli-controlled Area C of the West Bank are often demolished under the pretense of being built without permits. However, permits are almost never issued to Palestinians, leaving them no choice but to build with the risk of imminent demolition. In contrast, illegal Israeli settlements in the area are constructed and expanded with impunity.

Many residents of this community are already refugees—expelled from the Negev during the Nakba of 1948. Now approximately 40 families with over 300 people face yet another displacement, along with the destruction of their traditional lifestyle.

Demolition orders for EU-funded housing

The Israeli authorities began at approximately 8:15 a.m. with the home of Ahmed Tarabeen, ordering his family to demolish their home by Thursday, August 6th, or else the army would come to complete the task.

The demolition order

The demolition order.

They delivered the same message to the house of Hani Uweidat before making their way to another household of 14 residents now under the threat of losing their home. A total of seven demolition orders were distributed.

Three of the housing shelters that received demolition orders were originally donated by the European Union, and have already been demolished and then rebuilt with international support.

Members of the Jabal al-Baba community predict that the three EU-funded housing shelters will be demolished soon, based on witnessing Israeli forces’ thorough photography of the structures—usually a sign that the demolition orders are more than simply a threat.

Atallah Masara, Jabal al-Baba’s community representative, expressed his grave concern over the matter.  The demolition orders came as a surprise, he said, after nearly a year without any issued. “Now the future is dark,” he stated. He emphasized the dire need for international support and solidarity during this time, requesting careful documentation of upcoming events.

Atallah, however, remained resilient. When asked what the Bedouin community would do if these homes were demolished, he responded without hesitation, “We will rebuild again.”

About Cait Arnold

Cait Arnold is from Atlanta, GA and currently interns at the Al Quds Human Rights Clinic in Palestine.

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10 Responses

  1. amigo
    August 4, 2015, 11:37 am

    We act in God,s name. You will not defy God,s wishes.We do not care where you go.Jordan is that way .Try there.We will be back in 2 hours —be gone.This is Israel and is for Jews only.Palestinians have no business living amongst God,s chosen people.

    This an interesting move by Israel when the world is already getting it,s full of zionist wailing and whining and screaming about pogroms and antisemitism and existential threats and security..Do these people really believe they are invincible against most of the rest of the world.

    Mass delusion on a grand scale.Unprecedented I would say.

    Does anyone else get the impression that Israel knows the gig is up and is “running to the hills and taking what they can, so to speak , before the curtain comes down on the so called Greater Israel ” project.

    • John O
      John O
      August 4, 2015, 1:10 pm

      Israeli settlement policy – the longest suicide note in history.

  2. August 4, 2015, 12:44 pm

    This only makes us sad and makes us loathe, even more, Israel and those who support this illegal strategy of Israeli to demolish and occupy. We will never forget. Israel and her supporters are corrupt, smug and arrogant, but we have stamina and justice is always on our side. Israel is a pariah and a rogue State. In the end Israel will lose this battle.

    Iran has now been partially freed from the US/Israeli yoke – Iran will be our ally, speaking out about the illegal behavior of Israel towards the Palestinians. This is the real reason why Israel is still desperately trying to undermine the Obama deal with Iran. But it is too late. The UN and the EU have already approved the deal and set it in motion. Israel has lost the first major battle and the defeat is being amplified by Israeli madness and displayed for the sane world to savor.

    • Marnie
      August 5, 2015, 1:22 am


    • Rodneywatts
      August 5, 2015, 3:49 am

      @ amigo @ unverified

      Both your comments A*! In addition to sadness etc, ‘unverified’, I have for the first time in a longtime felt utterly nauseous over the torchings and deaths. I cannot see that we in the UK and EU are going to be persuaded by Israel’s nutcase arguments and accept their heinous actions without consequences. I just pray that the majority of Americans and particulary lawmakers come to their senses soon, before the US suffers consequential economic and political loss in the world.

      Thank you Cait Arnold for all you do.

  3. JLewisDickerson
    August 4, 2015, 8:07 pm

    RE: “Homes and other structures in Israeli-controlled Area C of the West Bank are often demolished under the pretense of being built without permits. However, permits are almost never issued to Palestinians, leaving them no choice but to build with the risk of imminent demolition. In contrast, illegal Israeli settlements in the area are constructed and expanded with impunity.” ~ Cait Arnold

    SEE: “Fighting Settlers’ Impunity and Immunity”, by Pierre Klochendler, Inter Press Service, 12/16/11

    [EXCERPT] . . . The Israeli occupation, particularly the future of wildcat settlements built by settlers without formal government approval has been a simmering issue ever since their creation during the 1990s.
    In 2005, former head of the State Prosecution Criminal Department Talia Sasson published a landmark report on the question. Commissioned by then prime minister Ariel Sharon, the report found the Israeli government guilty of “institutional lawbreaking”*
    and of the theft of private Palestinian land to covertly establish over a hundred “illegal outposts”. The damning irony is that the “outposts” were a 1997 initiative by none but Sharon himself, then foreign Minister under Netanyahu, who’d urged settlers to seize hilltops in order to prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state.
    The report recommended criminal investigation against those allegedly involved in the scheme, but it was shelved. Repeated injunctions have since pressed successive governments to address the issue. . .



    “In a government of law, the existence of the government will be imperiled if it fails to observe the law scrupulously. Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or for ill, it teaches the whole people by example. Crime is contagious. If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for the law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.” ~ Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis in his dissenting opinion to Olmstead v. United States (1928)

    SOURCE –

  4. RayJosephCormier
    August 5, 2015, 8:28 am

    The Israelis are retroactively legalizing illegally built without a permit Israeli settler housing and outposts.

  5. Vera Gottlieb
    Vera Gottlieb
    August 5, 2015, 9:25 am

    And I hated the Nazis too.

  6. just
    August 5, 2015, 9:29 am

    +1, amigo, unverified__5ilf90kd, and Rodneywatts.

    John O~ I liked your comment, too! Short and true.

    Too bad that the 60 newly- elected Congress people won’t get a tour of the real Israel. Too bad they won’t find demolition orders plastered on their own front doors when they return from their 5 star stay in the Occupation/Apartheid state, courtesy of AIPAC.

    Thank you, Cait.

  7. Qualtrough
    August 7, 2015, 3:25 am

    These decisions are fungible, JSIL may cancel one demolition or settlement plan in the face of pressure only to undertake more demolitions or settlements elsewhere. There is no net change, only a steady increase.

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