Is settler violence not news?

Another week and more settler violence against Palestinian farmers in the West Bank. The Western media is typically absent from the scene. Activst blogger and journalist Joseph Dana continues his weekly eyewitnesses reports from the ground:

1 August 2009 South West Bank

Ta’ayush joined the Christian Peacemaker Team to help accompany children to school near the southern West Bank village of Tuwani. Children from nearby villages such as Tuba attend school in Tuwani which means that they have to walk close to the illegal settlement of Havat Maon. In recent years, the settlers have taken over the main Palestinian road that connects the villages, forcing the children to hike up and down grueling gorges. If that is not enough, the settlers have routinely attacked the children leading the IDF at the bequest of the Israeli High Court to provide physical protection to the school children. What could be more surreal! The IDF has to protect Palestinian school children from Jewish settlers.

Often the IDF does not show up to protect the children because of ”˜prior engagements’. Members of the Christian Peacemaker Team often take their place, sometimes at the price of extreme physical violence from the settlers of Havat Maon.

On Saturday, Ta’ayush joined the CPT on the convoy. As is the case when the IDF is not present, the settlers approached the children. The adults did not come close, choosing to take a backseat and let their children take up the stone throwing and curses. Children literally not yet old enough to read and write have already been taught that violence is not only OK, but encouraged. But this does not make it into mainstream Western media.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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