Lost Makams Visit to Bet Zakariya

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Shuli Bar, Hannah, Nurit and Irit (report and photos), translatio Tal H.

Bet Zakariya

Two buses of the Jewish Agency unloaded about 100 youths about 16-17 years old, who lay down around the ancient oak tree – that survived thanks to the sanctity attributed to it by the Palestinians as Balut Nabi Zakariya – The Prophet Zakariya’s Oak Tree.

According to Abu Ibrahim it sits on 2 dunams of Waqf land (waqf – the Muslim religious sites and lands authority). All this is totally ignored by the Jews. This tree, for them, is the beating heart of the Etzyon settler-colony bloc, and the name they give it – The Lone Tree – symbolizes and reminds them of the Jews’ exile from this area for 19 years, since the shameful military defeat of 1948 until their return there in 1967.

Now they are here, and in a big way, say the two guides with their maps and flailing arms, ambassadors of the Etzyon Bloc for the Jewish people in the Diaspora. At a certain point we were asked not to take pictures.  Are they ashamed of something?

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development shares the ‘project of development of the Lone Tree area”, as its website claims. Erasure of the Palestinian cultural and historical heritage outside the Jewish settler-colonies is systematic and practiced by all the Israeli authorities and the local Jewish heritage perpetuation institutions.