It seems that the insanity continues. If it weren’t so true, it might even be laughable. But it is true. And as a result, people – real human people with names and families and lives and loved ones – people who share our humanity – people who share our common basic human needs – are suffering. Unnecessarily suffering. It is unconscionable.
On Friday of last week, the day after internationals, Israeli’s and local villagers worked together to clean up the rubble resulting from the home demolitions at Um al Kher, the Palestinian Authority arrived with 3 toilets and 3 tents. The toilets were necessary to replace those lost. The tents are larger and more substantial than the ones the ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross) brought. The displaced villagers intended to live in these tents until more permanent housing could be secured. One tent was erected immediately over the foundation of one of the destroyed houses and another was placed in close proximity to the house it was sent to replace. A third tent was not put up.
We visited on Saturday night. As we sat in one of the newly erected tents, we were told that the Israeli Civil Administration had been there that day, had measured the tents and the toilets, and had informed the villagers that they would be arriving soon to demolish these structures.
On Monday, the villagers took down the two tents and hid the toilets.
On Wednesday, the army arrived with their bulldozers. Unable to find the PA tents or the toilets, they took away the two small ICRC tents.
Since then, they have also taken away the three larger PA tents.
Villagers have now put the toilets back up.
At this point, it is unclear what the next steps will be. Anxieties run high.
It is unknown if, when, and how either temporary or permanent replacement housing will be built.
Winter is closing in. Storms bringing rain and cold temperatures are forecast for tomorrow.
The need is obvious.
Peace, Salaam, Shalom,