Thursday, April 19, 2007

Fighting Anti-Judaism in Hebron Part 2

Today is still Day 14,250 of the Maintenance of the Immoral (and Illegal) West Bank Settlements and almost the 40th anniversary of the start of the immoral (and illegal) occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.

Micah.6:8 “He has told you, O man, Only to do justice and to love goodness, and to walk humbly with your God"

Within the borders of Hebron, one of the biggest Arab cities in the West Bank, are 120,000 Palestinians. In the old city of Hebron there are 650 Jewish Israeli squatters and 30,000 Palestinians.

Just when you thought things could not get worse or more violent in Hebron, a new generation of Jewish Israeli Squatter thugs appeared. Here is an account of a day in Hebron in the Summer of 2001 from “A Report from the Mean Streets of Hebron” by Kathleen Kern - Nov/Dec 2001 Tikkun Magazine

“I have worked with Christian Peacemaker Teams in Hebron since 1995. (in the) summer 2001 … Teenage settler girls without fail assaulted Palestinian vendors in the vegetable market on the infrequent occasions when the Israeli military lifted the curfew there. The military would then reimpose curfew. (The rules of the game in Hebron: If Israelis are attacked by Palestinians, Palestinians are punished. If Palestinians are attacked by Israelis, Palestinians are punished.)

Our British friend, a Ploughshares activist, had witnessed a girl heave a rock at a seventy-five-year-old man and then laugh as his white headscarf became soaked with blood. My friend pled with an adult male settler to stop the girls from throwing rocks. He proceeded to cover her Women in Black solidarity outfit with white globs of saliva, call her a Nazi, punch her in the head, and smash her camera.

Hebron settler boys between the ages of five and twelve wandered the streets in packs stoning Palestinian passersby, their homes, and their shops, while soldiers looked on. A group of these boys assaulted Sister Anne Montgomery (age seventy-four) and I when soldiers called us over to a checkpoint and asked to see our passports. The soldiers stood there as the group of about ten boys proceeded to stone us, hit us with sticks, and throw water at us from the soldiers' water bottle. Despite our requests that the soldiers call the police, they just stood there, sometimes smiling at the boys' behavior. Using our cellphone (which the boys tried to snatch from my hands), we finally called an Israeli friend who called the police. As the blue flashing light drew near, the two oldest boys, ringleaders in the attack, ran into the settlement of Avraham Avinu. The first thing the Israeli police said to us as they got out of the van was, "We can't arrest them; they're under ten." Anne and I then watched from the safety of the police van as the boys began to push the policemen and try to grab the video camera of the officer taping their antics. It almost frightened me more than getting attacked to see that the little boys, shouting "Naziim, Naziim," knew that they could push around police officers with complete impunity. I have not seen this level of street violence since the months before the Rabin assassination in 1995. Then, we didn't take the innumerable threats to kill Rabin and Peres seriously, any more than we took offense at getting called Nazis. Now, we do.”

Again I want to point out that what Rabbi Levinger and the Jewish people who follow him are doing is despicable. It is ironic that some would label as anti-Semitic those who condemn the Jewish Hebron squatters, these living symbols of anti-Judaism, whose actions are so contrary to the core values of Judaism.

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