Hebron, Sansana, South Hebron Hills, Tue 13.7.10, Morning
Translator: Charles K.
- Invisible villages in the southern Hebron hills
- Summer camp for the hilltop youth: Enthusiastically building Mitzpeh Avichai
- Hebron’s water problems
By 7 AM all the laborers have already crossed to the Israeli side. Three buses with relatives of prisoners are waiting. Families are waiting under the canopy, many women and children.
Southern Hebron hills
This morning we decided to drive to Hebron via Route 317 and from there on Route 356, rather than on Route 60, as usual. We see the settlements of Beit Yatir, Sussia, Ma’on and Carmel, and know they exist. How?! There are large signs on the road. At Carmel there’s even a new neighborhood that’s visible, and a new approach road has been paved leading to it.
But all along that road there are also many Palestinian villages. They’re very visible, but no sign exists indicating their presence. As if they were invisible.
True, some of them can be found only on the maps of OCHA - the Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs: Khirbet a-Nabi, A-Raqaz, A-Tawaneh, Umm al-Hir, A-Da’irat, Yar Rafatiyya, Yatta, Bir al Arous, Zif. Everything is dry during these summer days, but the entire area is inhabited, and many farmers are working in the fields. But, as we said, they’re invisible.
The new neighborhood of Nofei Mamreh juts out to the left of the entrance to Kiryat Arba. On the hill to the right new buildings have been added to Mitzpeh Avichai. Yediot Aharonot solved the mystery for me: A large article, with photographs: “The hilltop youth present: Summer camp for the illegal outposts.”
The program: Mixing concrete and running away from the police. “Our age peers are sitting around being bored while we’re learning to build and be built.” That’s what it says in the article. End of quote.
The city of Hebron is quiet and “boring.” The soldiers man the usual checkpoints but don’t detain anyone.
In conversations with local friends, they again talk about the city’s serious water problems. There’s water in the taps only a few hours a day, at specified times. Otherwise, one water tanker a month comes to each neighborhood, and everyone fills their rooftop tanks. Someone who needs more water than they received has to go to the municipality to fill out a request form, and….
It’s true, say the locals, that the problems began when the Palestinian Authority took over the municipal administration, but it isn’t possible to ignore the fact that the city is under occupation and divided, and in the “bi-national” portion (H2) there’s a Jewish enclave, and there the water supply is continuous. How can that be?