Burin farmers are coping with the burning of whole olive groves
The farmers from Burin are coping now with the results of the burning of whole olive groves in the past few weeks. Most of the fires were at the foot of Har Bracha and the outpost next to it, Giv'at Ronen. The permits for olive-picking near the settlements have not yet been issued, but the residents can already see the settlers getting to the trees that are left and harvesting them.
Habla 1393, 13:50
The vehicles going out are carefully inspected and extremely slowly, even though most of them belong to the owners of the nurseries. We didn't observe any special delays. They go out loaded down with empty vessels, but without saplings. Those must go out through the Eliyahu passage.
The station over the road is manned, but the road is open.
We climbed up to the house of Doha to hear about how the residents are coping with the fires. We found her in a good mood, as usual, with her beautiful daughter, Mona, at her side, a students of English and Hebrew language at A-Najah University. Within minutes, the table was covered with cool water, a pile of pomegranates, which Doha took apart and put into our plates, as well as fragrant coffee. She generously added packages of pomegrantes to each one of us for the New Year.
Doha tells us that the outpost, Giv'at Ronen, abuts the olive groves of Burin. A majority of the tree were burnt, and now they are waiting to harvest what is left. But this is where the dog is buried (??)
The problems of the olive harvest
As during every year, the ability of harvesting near the settlements requires permits. They never know when they will receive the permits. The usual procedure of the DCO is that one day before they announce to the residents by loud speaker that there is permission to harvest, usually only for 3 days. But the settlers of Giv'at Ronen don't wait. The owners of the houses nearest to the grove see the settlers entering the area where there are some trees left which are not burnt and start harvesting. When we ask why do they not photograph them, the answer is that they are totally discouraged and fed up. Years of presenting photos and other evidence has not initiated any acts of punishment or prevention.
So, their only struggle to stick to their land and not give up is to try to take care of and rejuvenate the land. They have already begun to trim the remainder of the tree trunks, to allow them to produce new branches. A stury which takes years, but the trees will grow again, they say.