Tuesday, November 22, 2011

(Video) A Rainy confrontation in Netzer

Photo: Abigail Browning
Women in Green
21 November '11

Under pouring rain, twenty AFSI members, headed by their leader Helen Freedman, arrived in Netzer on Friday for a tour and plantings, before continuing to Hebron for Shabbat Chaye Sara.

When the AFSI and Women in Green activists arrived at the scene of the planting , the skies opened and blessed rain started pouring down.

All of a sudden, a group of Arabs showed up and started a confrontation , with the Arabs trying to prevent the Jews from planting – by pushing and shoving the Jews and even uprooting the trees that had just been planted. After a few minutes, the Arabs brought reinforcement with some 12 Arabs working on a nearby field .

One has to mention that the activists did not fear nor shy away from the conflict; at the contrary- they acted bravely, planted anyway, replanted the few saplings the Arabs had uprooted and defended the planted trees with their bodies till the IDF arrived.

To the soldiers, the activists explained that on this piece of land there had already been a conflict months ago and the Civil Administration clearly stated then that these are State Lands and thus, the Arabs have no right to approach that area. And indeed, the soldiers did what they were supposed to and took out the Arabs from that plot of land.

Luckily the police seemed to have had no manpower on that rainy Friday. One lonely policeman arrived at the scene and thus, this time, no situation arose in which Jews are detained and accused of attacking, like what happened a week and a half ago in another area in Netzer.

The pouring rain and the determination of the Jews to stand firm in front of the Arabs, created an atmosphere of happiness, joy and spiritual elevation. The AFSI activists experienced a live report of the daily struggle for the land of Israel, dunam after dunam.

It was moving to see the AFSI activists waving the Israeli flag and singing "Am Yisrael Chai" after having succeeded in planting tens of olive trees.

Based on their experience of many years, it is clear to the activists that they might need to plant and replant the trees on this piece of land , till it will safely stay in Jewish hands. On the eve of Shabbat Chaye Sara, that is really the message we learn from Avraham Avinu. Even though the Land of Israel was promised to us by G-d, it will be redeemed and in our hands only after a lot of hard work, determination, tenacity and steadfastness.

Yehudit Katsover/Nadia Matar

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