Tuesday, March 17, 2015

  • Tuesday, March 17, 2015
  • Elder of Ziyon


From NPR:
Palestinian investor Bashar Masri is building an entirely new city in the West Bank. It's a huge investment, with 5,000 new homes for tens of thousands of families. And, in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it's also a political statement.

As we approached this new city of Rawabi, north of Ramallah, we saw a row of high-rise apartment buildings topped by construction cranes. Scaffolding surrounds the minaret of an incomplete mosque. Nobody has moved in yet.

Masri has had to battle for years, but says he finally has permission to hook up the water system, which is controlled by Israel. The military occupation of the West Bank often complicates Palestinian efforts to build, and this distinctive project was no exception.
Israel's opposition to hooking up the water was in response to Palestinian Arab refusal to work with Israel on crucial water issues all over Judea and Samaria.

But if you bother to read way further down the article, you can see that the PA also put up roadblocks to Rawabi. Instead of paragraph 3, we can find it in paragraph 20:
The Palestinians do have their own government, the Palestinian Authority, but Masri was equally frustrated with those officials. He says the group didn't keep a promise to build schools and roads for Rawabi.

"They signed the agreement and I think they should have delivered," he says. "Whenever I talk to them they say, 'Oh, Bashar, we need schools in other areas, we need roads in other areas.' Well, I think we should have gotten at least our fair share, proportional to the expected community in the next five years."
No roads and schools? Aren't they pretty important too?

Finally, NPR focuses on Israelis who want to become settlers. Of course, they won't call them that:
When we met some of the buyers, we learned that several are not from the West Bank, but rather live inside Israel, and are Israeli citizens.

Sofian and Fahimeh Mowassi are Arab citizens of the Jewish state. About 20 percent of Israel's population are Arab Israelis — or, as many call themselves, Palestinian citizens of Israel.

Fahimeh say they are buying a second home because Jewish Israelis are not comfortable living with Arabs. "We don't feel they accept us," she says, adding, "it's nice to come here, among our people."
They want to maintain their Israeli citizenship (this is only a second home) but they want to buy a house in the West Bank. Doesn't that make them settlers?

Oh, sorry, Moving to the east of the Green Line is only "illegal" if you are Jewish.

What would happen if Jews tried to buy houses in Rawabi? Would Mr. El Masry (-"The Egyptian") allow it? Would their neighbors?

These are questions that NPR doesn't want to ask, because the answer shows that the heroes of their story are bigots and antisemites. And that's not news.

(h/t Irene)



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