Tuesday, September 24, 2019

  • Tuesday, September 24, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Gideon Levy in Haaretz writes about how cruel Israelis are destroying Palestinian olive trees, seemingly for no other reason but to persecute their owners:

Two days after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared, on Tuesday last week, his intention to annex the Jordan Valley after the election, forces of the Civil Administration carried out yet another brutal operation of destruction. The target this time was particularly remote: a rocky hillside adjacent to the village of Tamoun in the northern valley. The goal was singularly vicious: the uprooting of hundreds of olive trees that were about to yield their first fruit...

Four days later, on Monday, the groves’ owners stood next to their felled trees and their ruined cisterns, sadly rolling bits of olives from the felled trees between their fingers. The first crop of these seven-year-old trees was set to be harvested in another few days, but the Civil Administration’s terminators got here just before – as if to rub salt in the wound. The butchered trees are withering on the ground; their fruit is dying on the slashed branches. 
Here is the photo of the uprooted trees from the story:


There's only one slight problem. These aren't olive trees. 

To be certain, I asked people on Twitter who know trees better than me, and it was unanimous - not one person identified these as olive trees. The color and shape of the leaves, the thickness of the trunk - all show that these are not olive trees and Levy's claim that they were cut down right before they were ready to produce fruit is simply not true.

But if they are not olive trees, what are they, and why is Israel uprooting them?

According to the Regavim NGO - who have a much better track record than Haaretz for telling the truth - these trees are acacia saligna trees, known as coojong (and other names.) They are the tree equivalent of weeds - invasive, non-indigenous, fast growing trees that disrupt the ecosystem and destroy the water table.

Regavim says that the PA plants these trees, considered pests throughout the world, because they grow like wildfire and give the appearance of "old" agricultural work at the site. This way they can  take advantage of a loophole in Ottoman Land Law that gives squatters rights if they have been using the land for several years without any objections having been registered against them. Young, fast growing coojongs look like much older trees for their age, so they are ideal as a means for a land grab.

Israel is destroying the trees not only because the land they are planted on is state land, but also because the trees themselves are a threat to the ecosystem. The Palestinians, who claim to love their land so much, prefer to plant invasive, non-indigenous trees that are close to unkillable (their seeds can survive fire) and that destroys other plants.







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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون



This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

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