From: Rabbi Alissa Wise <[email protected]>
Date: April 26, 2016 8:13:11 AM PDT (CA)
To: Piotr Bein
Subject: Urgent: help stop home demolitions
Our voices can help stave off the threat of eviction and dispossession for the people of Atir and Um al-Hiran. And what better way to celebrate Pesach than that?
This photo, from a mobile home for settlers, is proof that the JNF is enabling these expulsions. Email their CEO, Russell Robinson, and tell him that the demolitions must stop.
TO: Russell RobinsonJNFEmail:[email protected]
I am writing to urge you to stop the demolition of the Bedouin villages of Atir and Um al-Hiran, and the displacement of the people who live there.
As Jews around the world celebrate the festival of Pesach, and recommit ourselves to justice and liberation, it’s appalling that the JNF supporting the expulsion of families and communities from their land and their homes.
Displacement and expulsion are not my values.
In February, we wrote to you about the imminent demolition of two Arab Bedouin villages in Southern Israel, Umm al-Hiran and Atir. (It’s okay if you don’t remember — I’ve attached the email below to jog your memory.)
Our allies, Jewish Coalition for the Bedouin of Umm al-Hiran and Atir, asked us to raise the alarm about the demolitions, and show the Israeli government that the world was watching. That’s exactly what we did — over 10,000 of us emailed Benjamin Netanyahu, and urged him to step in and prevent the demolition.
But now the villages are under threat again, and we need to act fast.
The Jewish National Fund (JNF) is working hand in hand with the Israeli government to move forward the demolition of the villages, establish a new Jewish town, and plant a forest on the land where Arab Bedouin people have built homes, farms, and mosques. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised: the JNF has a long and sordid history of funding displacement in Israel/Palestine. But they’ve been getting away with it for too long, and we can’t stand for it any longer.
These Arab Bedouin communities were displaced from their ancestral land in 1948. They were displaced again in 1952 and again in 1956, and forced to move to Atir and Umm al-Hiran. And now they’re being displaced once more, so that the JNF can demolish their homes to plant a forest and make way for Jewish settlers.
It’s a pattern being repeated across Israel/Palestine, but this time we have a chance to stop it. The JNF is able to continue expelling non-Jews from their homes because they think that none of us are watching. They think that none of us care.
Let’s send a message to the JNF that they can’t ignore: Jews and allies are watching. Do not demolish the Arab Bedouin villages of Umm al-Hiran and Atir.
On Friday and Saturday night, Jews around the world gathered at seder tables to celebrate Pesach, and the exodus from Egypt. We recommitted ourselves to the idea that in every generation, every single person must feel as though they themselves were liberated. How do we put that into action? This is one of the ways.
Our voices can help stave off the threat of eviction and dispossession for the people of Atir and Umm al-Hiran. And what better way to celebrate Pesach than that?
Email JNF CEO Russell Robinson, and demand that he use his power to stop the demolition of Atir and Umm al-Hiran.
Rabbi Alissa Wise