Al-Bweireh

Our internet is up again, thanks to a new wireless router that probably would have been a lot lot cheaper in the U.S.

Our school patrol continues.  Today at the mosque checkpoint the Border police didn't open any bags, but it could be entirely different tomorrow.

 

Yesterday we went out to the neighborhood of Al-Bweireh which is in a pleasant valley once called the "vegetable basket" of Hebron.  And then the settlement of Givat Ha Harsina moved next door, and blocked off the main road, causing a situation where the people of al-Bweireh have to walk quite a long distance to access transportation.  More to the point of our presence there, the children of Al-Bweireh need to walk that route, and settlers from Harsina and an outpost settlement (unauthorized by the Israeli government) the next hill over often stone the children as they walk home from school.

 

Along with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), we've been trying to get out every school day and on Saturdays to meet the families there.  Yesterday, we visited a family who told us that last month, settlers from the outpost came with soldiers into their house  and demanded that they return a dog they had purportedly stolen. 

One learns fairly early on here that conservative Muslims consider dogs unclean, so of course the charge was ridiculous, but they told the family that they would demolish their home if they did not return the dog within one week, which caused one little boy in the family to huddle, shaking in a corner of the house all night.  Settlers have also ambushed children riding bikes, pushing them off their bikes and then stealing them.

 

There had been a fence along the road to Al-Bweireh, but the army moved it about three years ago; it almost seemed to the families there that it was inviting settlers to attack them.

 

Things are calm enough in Hebron now, that it is not a hardship to send at least one CPTer and one EAPPI (I call them Eepies) volunteer out in the afternoon, but in February, the team will have only 3 people, and the EAPPI crew willl be new and may choose not to become involved with Al-Bweireh.

 

Team life:  Paulette and Drew just came back from Al-Bweireh with pictures of a 6-year-old  with scabs on his face from getting pushed down by settlers in their twenties last Wednesday.  Gotta deal with that, so good-bye for now.