Today is "Land Day," when Arabs in Israel and the territories protest - often violently - about alleged Israeli seizures of Arab-owned land.
According to Arab media, Amnesty International issued a petition that it sent to Israeli officials and the media where it warns that Israeli actions in the Negev are going to make hundreds of Bedouin homeless.
The petition centers around Umm al-Hiran, an illegal village that Israel had declared its intent to demolish since 2003.
You can see from its photo that the buildings are arranged haphazardly. Like other illegal Bedouin villages, people just start to build wherever they want and then declare that they owned the land for centuries.
I've seen the sprawl of hundreds of illegal Bedouin villages in the Negev and reported on them. And Israel has created towns that the illegal residents can move to, a fact that the NGOs don't want to talk about. It is a real problem that deserves a real solution and not the simplistic sloganeering that Amnesty (and HRW) is engaging in to preserve the "rights" of Arabs to build wherever and whenever they feel like.
The Amnesty petition, according to the articles, has 1,500 signatures.
I couldn't help but recall that I once sent a petition to Amnesty about its silence concerning Arab anti-semitism, specifically in regard to antisemitic Ramadan TV series in the Arab world meant to incite hatred against Jews. My petition received some 2,200 signatures and StandWithUs sent a similar petition with over 4,700 signatures, both of which were delivered to Amnesty's headquarters in London.
If Amnesty cares so much about petitions, why does it ignore petitions about how it is complicit in allowing incitement against Jews in the Arab world?
(See also this infographic issued by Israel that explains the truth around Bedouin villages in the Negev.)
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