Ehud Krinis http://www.bgu.ac.il/kreitman_foundation/fellows/humanities.htm
----- Original Message -----
From: אהוד קריניס
To: Ehud Krinis
Sent: Wednesday, July 23, 2008 10:35 AM
Subject: Latest Events in Susya
Testimony taken from Abu Jaber, eye-witness:
On Tuesday, July 15th, attorney Kamar of Rabbis or Human Rights came to Susya, accompanied by representatives of the Civil Administration. They spoke with several of the residents of the Palestinian village Susya, among them Abu Jaber, and announced that they are allowed access and use of the grazing areas recognized as land belonging to the Halis family of Yatta, included in the expanded security area of the Susya colony (i.e. settlement) [see: http://www.taayush.org/topics/susia-update-13012007.html ].
On Thursday July 17th, several of the Susya villagers, accompanied by some international volunteers, entered the Halis family land with their herds. This area is located on the south side of the hill to the west of the improvised colonist outpost created about two years ago that includes, among other things, a dwelling shack. Shortly after their arrival, some colonists suddenly emerged, among them a young man by the name of Shlomi on horseback, Michael – the Susya colony security guard (photo 1976), Dalia Har-Sinai and her daughter, a shepherd from Dalia's ranch (located to the south-west of the colony) and two other colonists, one of them driving a Subaru station-wagon no. 35-076-03. This latter colonist now told the Palestinians he had taken part in the severe assault against Khalil and Tamam Nuaj'ah's family earlier last month (on this incident see http://villagesgroup.wordpress.com/2008/06/16/palestinian-family-from-susya-assaulted-by-settlers/
This band began to throw stones at the herd, while Shlomi on his horse rode through it, trying to scatter and chase it away. When soldiers arrived at the scene, they collected the Palestinians' IDs and declared the area a 'closed military zone'. In answer to the question why the colonists are not turned away from an area declared as such, one of the soldiers said in English, "They are our commanders". When, after a while, some policemen arrived, colonist Shlomi complained of having been attacked by Mahmoud Nwaj'ah. Mahmoud was arrested and taken to the Hebron police station for interrogation (he was released that evening).
On the next day, Friday July 18th, a civil administration officer by the name of Timor came to Palestinian Susya and announced that following the difficulties of entering the Halis family lands, they are allowed to reach the Nwaj'ah family lands on the other, northern, side of the "shack" outpost. On the morrow, Saturday July 19th, accompanied by international volunteers, the villagers came there to graze their herd.
The first colonist to arrive on the scene this time was Dalia's shepherd, who took his shirt off and used it to mask his face as has become the habit in colonist attacks lately. This colonist alerted Michael, the security guard, who arrived with another ten colonists, including two who participated in the previous assault. Among them was the one had driven the Subaru and was now threatening the Palestinians: "We'll do to you what we did to Tamam". Another bearded colonist explained to the landowners of the Nwaj'ah family that all of this land belongs to the Jews, and the only way for the family to repossess it is to become Jews themselves.
The other colonists resorted to the familiar language of stoning the shepherds and their flocks. After a while the regional brigade commander arrived at the spot, a colonel, and declared the place 'closed military zone'. When Abu Jaber's complained that once more this edict was being forced on Palestinians alone and not on their colonist assailants, the commander instructed his soldiers to arrest him. They also arrested Nasser Nwaj'ah who was filming the incident on behalf of 'B'tselem' organization.
In addition, the four international volunteers were detained. None of the attacking colonists were detained, however. The commander's claims that the violence was initiated by the Palestinian residents who refused to obey the soldiers' demands have been refuted by the filmed footage.
Later, when the detainees arrived at the Hebron police station, one of the interrogating policemen told them: "The key mistake here was made by Moshe Dayan, who did not expel all of you to Jordan immediately following the 1967 Occupation."
Once again, the detainees were released that very evening.
Notes: Ehud Krinis