Saving a Palestinian Village Israel Want Demolished for Exclusive Jewish Use?
by Stephen Lendman
Khan al-Ahmar is home to about 180 Palestinian Bedouin residents, their village located between two illegal Israeli settlements near Jerusalem.
Residents have been viciously harassed by Israeli authorities – denied access to electricity, water and other essential services.
On July 4, Israeli Civil Administration officials entered the village with demolition equipment, protected by police.
Portions of the guardrail, separating community homes from a roadway were destroyed. Nonviolent demonstrators were brutalized and arrested for blocking a bulldozer.
Village residents were uprooted in the 1950s, later to make way for the illegal Ma’ale Adumim settlement. Israel again wants them displaced from their current homes, disdainful of their rights.
On the same day, a similar scene played out in Abu a-Nuwar village in the same area. Nine homes and three farm structures were destroyed, dozens of residents left homeless.
Last winter, the village school built by EU funds was demolished. Forcible transfer of Occupied Palestinians from their homes and land constitutes a war crime under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, Fourth Geneva, the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal, and 1907 Hague Regulations.
There’s no ambiguity about it. Yet the world community turns a blind eye to egregious Israeli high crimes of war, against humanity and genocide – along with horrific daily persecution of an entire population, defenseless against its ruthlessness.
Mondoweiss explained that Khan al-Ahmar and Abu Nuwar villages are home to around 2,000 Bedouin residents.
Displacing them for exclusive Jewish development “would effectively cut the West Bank into two,” isolating one Palestinian part from the other – driving a final stake through the heart of a hoped for two-state solution.
According to Jahalin Solidarity head Angela Godfrey-Goldstein, displacing Bedouins from both villages targeted for demolition moves things closer to “full-fledged (Israeli) apartheid (control) with no sustainable future” for Palestinians throughout the Territories.
On July 5, Israel’s High Court surprisingly suspended Khan al-Ahmar’s demolition. The Netanyahu regime was given until July 11 to respond to justifiable Bedouin claims that they were unfairly denied building permits, according to attorney Alaa Mahajna representing them.
Construction by Palestinians on their own land requires near impossible to get Israeli permit permission.
Israel wants Khan al-Ahmar and Abu a-Nuwar residents forcibly moved about seven miles from their villages – intending to relocate them adjacent to a landfill, the area unsafe for human habitation.
The High Court reprieve granted Khan al-Ahmar residents may be short-lived, Israel likely to proceed with its demolition plans regardless of a judicial ruling against it.
In May, Israel’s Supreme Court approved the demolition before suspending it days earlier.
When it comes to Palestinian rights, whatever Israel wants, it eventually gets.
A Final Comment
Despite Israel’s High Court suspension and international community opposition to demolishing Khan al-Ahmar, Israel is preparing to destroy the village anyway.
The only language Israel understands is force, not admonitions, judicial actions, or international community opposition.
PLO executive committee official Hanan Ashwari blasted Israel, saying “warning (its regime isn’t) enough.”
“If there is no serious intervention from the international community” against its lawless actions, other villages will be next, and more Palestinian men, women and children will be displaced for another 70 years to come” until virtually all of historic Palestine is stolen.
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