Inside the Middle East
September 26, 2010
Posted: 1148 GMT

Hanan Sufan welcomes us into her house with open arms. A resident of the West Bank village of Burin, she is accustomed to visitors. Over the years she has welcomed journalists, human rights groups, representatives from the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli military.

(Hanan Sufan)

All said they would help and all documented her plight. Yet ten years on, she still lives in daily fear of attacks from the nearby Israeli settlement of Yitzhar, a settlement considered radical by many mainstream Israelis.

Her home is nestled in the hills of the West Bank, away from the village. A spot which would have been envied before the settlement arrived. Now it makes her target number one for violent settlers who throw stones at her house and family and even set fire to the house in 2003.

Her daughter has captured many attacks on a video camera given to her by Israeli human rights group B’Tselem.

While sitting with the family, sipping the customary arabic coffee, it’s hard not to notice the iron gratings that cover every window – we’re told to prevent rocks and Molotov cocktails from flying inside the house. Barbed wire covers the top of the railings around the house to try and prevent people jumping over and there’s a bed on the roof. When I ask why, Sufan tells me it’s for her son who stays the night outside to listen out for an imminent attack.

(Hanan Sufan and her family)

Sufan tells me her husband died of a stroke in 2003 after seeing the house set on fire by settlers. Even now, she breaks down when she talks about him, saying she wishes she’d lost the house rather than her husband. She calls him the backbone of the family.

Without that backbone Sufan has taken over the role of head of the family and everyone looks to her for guidance. Her two year old grandson Wadee’ becomes distressed when she walks away, preferring to stay within a few meters.

We tried to speak to the settlement spokesman to ask what they are doing to try to stop this persistent violence against the family and the village as a whole, but he declined to comment, citing the Jewish holidays.

It’s no way for a family to live. Never leaving the house unattended for fear of settlers moving in. Never allowing the few sheep they have to roam the land for fear of them being poisoned – Sufan tells me 20 of her sheep were poisoned, now they are all kept in the backyard.

(Hanan Sufan showing her olive grove close to the border of the Yitzhar settlement)

Only walking up the hill towards the edge of the settlement to tend her olive trees when her son and many villagers are with her. She says she feels safe with us when we accompany her there as we have a camera and she thinks that will prevent any violence. Mourning 23 olive trees the settlers chopped down in January, she says she felt like she was losing a child as she had tended them so carefully for thirty or forty years.

And repeating her story time and time again to people who want to help but somehow fail to make a difference.

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Filed under: Israel •Palestinians

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Bush   September 26th, 2010 2:01 pm ET

Israels are protected by the international community. Laws do not apply to them that is why they are so confident when committing unlawful acts in openly.

Yosef   September 26th, 2010 2:03 pm ET

You might want to write about the Israeli families that are scared to travel on the roads leading to their homes. They are fearful after hundreds of men, women and children have been slaughtered by Palestinian gunmen (CNN word for terrorists). These "militants" choose a car full of Jews and proceed to empty their automatic weapons into that car and then they approach the car and make sure everyone is dead by shooting any survivors in the head.

dindy   September 26th, 2010 2:16 pm ET

Good Article by Paula Hancocks.

Tom Halpin   September 26th, 2010 2:22 pm ET

Thanks for posting this..American media is usually totally biased in favourite of the Israeli position

carlito   September 26th, 2010 2:23 pm ET

I aint jew or muslim but why is it that palestinians especially and muslims in general always act like the victims?? It takes an action to produce a reaction of the same force, they never mention the atrocities commited by them only those against them, a bit of transperancy would go a long way in helping their self image internationaly and locally.

Let's Be Fair   September 26th, 2010 2:30 pm ET

"We tried to speak to the settlement spokesman to ask what they are doing to try to stop this persistent violence against the family and the village as a whole, but he declined to comment, citing the Jewish holidays." So respect their holiday and wait to get the other side of the story. Every OBJECTIVE journalist knows this is essential . Did they absolutely have to publish it before geting the Israeli side? Another example of how CNN is a sieve for the Palestinian PR machine. BAD JOURNALISM!

d martin   September 26th, 2010 2:59 pm ET

There are no easy solutions. However, after much thought and much
research into "the problem", it appears to me that without a doubt the
Israelis are doing all they can to garner more land. It is land they are
after and not peace. What has occurred over the past 50 years can
only be described as one thing – ethnic cleansing. Little by little, the
rest of the world seems to be more awakened to the facts of what
has happened. The US needs to distance itself from this rogue
government and cease giving it support of any kind.

Perel Aydel Sanders   September 26th, 2010 3:05 pm ET

Dear Ms Hancocks,

CNN might not publish my comment as it will be highly critical of your essay, which is truly biased, but I hope they would forward you my opinion anyhow.

How, in all honesty, are you expecting to grow in your profession by writing absurdly biased pieces such as these? I cannot believe it comes from naivite or a profound lack of knowledge; I understand CNN has a fairly difficult selection process in which ( I imagine, silly me) , ill informed writers would have a hard time being chosen. But reading this piece of completely biased, misleading, soap opera-like commentary leaves me no choice but having to choose between you being an ill informed, idealistic, kumbaya college grad or an intelligent wiesel being paid by somebody to write such a thing. Since when are Jewish settlers as a community the 'dangerous ones' as opposed to palestinians? Who is threatening Israel 'to choose peace or land' in the ongoing negotiations? Where do the suicide bombers, sharia law, cutting-hands-stoning-women-hanging-homosexuals culture comes from? Israel? Israelis? Are you aware that one third of Israel population, considered Israeli citizens and having representatives in the Goverment are muslims? Are you aware that as per Abbas and all the palestinian sectors, one the west bank is considered a palestinian state JEWS WONT BE ALLOWED TO LIVE THERE? Why is your passion making you so blind?
In any case, I do not think my comments will make you change your hard opinion on this issue but I do hope it will make you reflect. It will be highly advantageous for your profession to be able to report both sides of the story without being carried away by emotions and not being able to be impartial, like any good journalist should be. I think your supervisors would notice as well.

hikari   September 26th, 2010 3:22 pm ET

that is sad.

miriam   September 26th, 2010 3:30 pm ET

It is no secret that Yitzhar is home to some of the most extreme in Israeli society, but is also no secret that the "camaramen/women" have been trained to film only part of the story and not the provocations that precede the violence, often instigated by activists belonging to the camara supplying group.

There are many Israelis, some in the West Bank and some not, who live in homes that are essentially barracaded fortresses. There are others who spend periods of days, weeks and months in underground shelters and sealed protected rooms. Nobody supplies them with camaras to document their predicament, since it's an experience that most Israelis have had to go through at some point in the past 62 years and longer.

That is also no way to have to live.
But such are the realities on BOTH sides of the conflict.

Zak   September 26th, 2010 4:58 pm ET

I'm sorry to hear your story. Itzhar's are mostly punks and the army uses tough measures to reign in violent people.

But what about some heartbreaking stories from the other side of the line, CNN?

Like the 45,000 Jews who live in Gilo and had to stand a constant barrage of sniper fire until israel built a cement wall to protect them.
That is SCARY man.

War has many casualities.

Ariely   September 26th, 2010 5:18 pm ET

Almost all Israelis villages are protected by fences.
Israeli villages started building protection fence in 1929 and are still buuilding fences because they have attacked, robbed and murdered by Arabs.

On the contrary Arab villages don’t need to build protection fences.
Guess why the Arab villages dodn’t need to build protection fences?

Josh Mark   September 26th, 2010 5:25 pm ET

At least Hanan Sufan can live. That is a lot more than can be said for thousands of Jews who have been murdered by Palestinian terrorism. Hanan Sufan can also move somewhere else. She has over a dozen pro-Muslim countries to call her own. The Jews on the other hand have only one place: the Land Of Israel.

Beaujam90   September 26th, 2010 5:29 pm ET

Racist israel must pay for all its crimes.

KB   September 26th, 2010 5:59 pm ET

@Josh Mark

Over 6,300 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis since 2000. Over 1,000 Israelis have been killed by Palestinians since 2000. Hanan Sufan has less of a chance of living than an Israeli does.

University Rector   September 26th, 2010 7:08 pm ET

I'm so sick of hearing pro Jewish settlers complain about the risk of attack from Palestinians. Get real, these settlers are building homes in someone else's land.

When Jewish settlers build their illegal towns in someone else's country, they break international law and the Geneva convention. In other words they commit war on Palestine! When you commit an aggressive act of war against another community, you must expect aggressive resistance.

Lets never forget the first terrorists in the middle east were Jewish i.e. Irgun and Sterngang. These are facts, which you can check on Google if you want to find the truth about who threw the first stone

Steven   September 26th, 2010 7:49 pm ET

Yes, I think she needs to move. Either to Gaza or Jordan. Or perhaps to be close to Obama in Chicago.

rena   September 26th, 2010 7:50 pm ET

This is absolutely ridiculous "reporting." I live here. I know.
You show your true colors: Hate.

Jason   September 26th, 2010 8:18 pm ET

although an editorial is given more flexibility in the way it can allow bias to be portrayed, I find this article's timing outrageous. What is CNN trying to do, insight international violence. This piece is one I would expect on Al Jazeera, not CNN.

I work with needy people. Each of them has their story and their stories are sad. Oddly enough, when you dig deep, you learn that the stories are often 10 or 20 years ago. They are well over their initial hardship and their motivation for telling the story is to get something from you. This seems to be the case of this article. What is Sufa's goal, to live in peace, to get money from people to reinforce her land, or to make the world angry at Israelis because of what a handful of misguided youth have allegedly done? Many of the initial comments have merit, for this is certainly a one sided article. Though this woman does live in fear, and it is a terrible situation that should not be diminished, but publishing the article, you are not helping her overcome her fear issues, you are feeding the fear and giving ear to a syndrome.

At some point, we need to leave the past behind us and try to build a future, which can never happen unless people let go of their fear.

Rob Davis   September 26th, 2010 8:36 pm ET

Incredible that CNN is so one-sided as to print this bit of advertorial for the Palestinians.
Yes, there are some realy radical settlers in Yitzhar. And they throw stones, cut down olive trees, and try their best to scare the Palestinians.
But they have never blown up a cafe full of civilians. Or a bus. Or a university cafeteria. Or a disco. Or a festive meal in a hotel.
They do not routinely launch rockets and mortars in the general direction of civilian homes.
And they do not teach their children to hate, to glorify death, to strive for martyrdom.
Has Paula Hancocks nothing to say about the other side?
Shame on you. Shame on her.

Martina Marie   September 26th, 2010 8:45 pm ET

Thank you for showing the plight of the Palestinians. Very impressive reporting from CNN. Palestinians are not violent, unreasonable people. They live under occupation. The United States' passive response to the Israeli government's increasingly aggressive behavior is largely to blame.

Jim W.   September 26th, 2010 9:20 pm ET

Quote: On the contrary Arab villages don’t need to build protection fences.
Guess why the Arab villages dodn’t need to build protection fences?

Um...I belive that is do to the fact that the Isrealies have F-16s and they don't have any trouble getting over fences...

Farid Mondragon   September 26th, 2010 9:27 pm ET

The UN considers the Jewish settlements in the occupied territories illegal but no mention of sanctions against Israel. Yet the US can attack Iraq or impose sanctions on Iran just on suspicion.

ihis   September 26th, 2010 9:42 pm ET

From ancient times that land that they are fighting for belongs to the Jews ( Israel) not Palestinians. They ought to re-read history and accept the thruth.

Unbelievable   September 26th, 2010 9:45 pm ET

Another jewish pregnant woman was shot today by palestinian terrorist and CNN is telling us crap about some violent settlers???

stingran   September 26th, 2010 10:13 pm ET

"Palaestina ex monumentis veteribus illustrata" – a detailed geographical survey of Palestine in 1696 written in Latin by Adriaan Reland published by Willem Broedelet, Utrecht, in 1714.

Residents of the REGION mainly concentrated in cities: Jerusalem, Acre, Safed, Jaffa, Tiberias and Gaza.

In most cities, the majority of residents are Christians, Jews and others, very few Muslims who generally are Bedouin, seasonal workers who came to serve as Seasonal workers in agriculture or building. v v
Nablus: 120 muslims, 70 Samaritans
Nazareth: 700 people – all Christians
Umm al-Fahm: 50 people-10 families, ALL Christian
Gaza: 550 people- 300 Jews,250 Christian(Jews engaged in agriculture ,Christians deal with the trading and transporting the products)
Tiberias:  300 residents, all Jews.
Safed: about 200 inhabitants, all Jews
Jerusalem :5000 people,most of them (3,500) Jews,the rest – Christian (1000) Muslim (500)

Ben   September 26th, 2010 10:18 pm ET

The Palestinians don't build fancy protection fences because they can't afford to.

Palestinians are trying to eke out a meager exstence. Their Jewish neighbors are trying to maintain and expand a vacation wonderland funded by the looting of the world's Goyim.


Roy   September 26th, 2010 10:23 pm ET

In a day an Israeli pregnant woman driving home was shot by Palestinian terrorists CNN choses, once again, to exhibit how biased its middle east coverage. Not even a title regarding the attack.


How responsible and fair is that? Why you ignore the pain of those who never targeted civilians?

daniel   September 26th, 2010 10:33 pm ET

Not a single word about the Jewish family that have been attacked today.
A pregnant woman and her husband been attacked today by terrorists (Palestinians) while driving a car.
Few weeks ago, another family was slaughtered the same way.

Don't the settlers what's like living in constant fear, you can't even compare the violence some stupid settlers cause to the violence of terrorists.

Martin   September 26th, 2010 10:57 pm ET

Hanan Sufan has only to fear the natural reactions to the atrocities commited by her radical brothers

Skweeki   September 26th, 2010 11:08 pm ET

How shocked am I to find out that Paula Hancocks actually hails from britain? I never would have known...

Manny   September 26th, 2010 11:27 pm ET

I'm sorry, I keep looking...but I just can't find the CNN article about the terror attack taking place yesterday (9.26) at S. mount Hebron, where Palestinans shot a pregnant woman in her 40s and her husband while they were driving in their car.

Are you guys for real CNN ?? What ever happened to unbiased media?

Eric Polly   September 26th, 2010 11:32 pm ET

62 years ago, the entire Arab world attacked Israel and squeezed 70% of her population into a narrow 9-mile wide strip along the Mediterranean coast. From there, the Jews managed to build a powerhouse economy that is the envy of the Middle East, with an annual GDP that is larger than all the Arab countries combined. Today, anyone who flies into Ben-Gurion airport sees that there is simply no more room for Jews to build housing in the center of the country. Now a Jew builds a house that is just a 20-minute drive from downtown Tel-Aviv and the world calls it a crime against humanity? It was the Arabs who created this problem in the first place, now they cry about it. No sympathy for them, they are a bunch of murderous, whining, backwards, tribal, cry babies. Wahhhhhh....

Carlos Marin   September 27th, 2010 2:08 am ET

Your story broke my heart. Fortunately, help is on the way! Hamas has promised to destroy Israel and it can be presumed that these evil settlers (who I cannot imagine why they haven't yet killed anybody, although you could make a case that they indirectly murdered Ms. Sufan's husband) will get what they deserve, and I don't refer to living en fear. In fact if Hamas has their way they won't live at all.

Zade   September 27th, 2010 2:56 am ET

Great to see reporting that takes the level off the Israeli side of the conflict and shows how both sides have victims as well as radicals.

Ariely   September 27th, 2010 7:42 am ET

1:1-Israel will hand over to Palestinian government land inhabited by Arabs from Israel and Jews from settlements governed by Israel
1:2-Both Arabs and Jew will remain in their current homes nobody will have to move physically.

1:3 Artificial boarders or imposed boarders are major conflict reasons.
Avoid future similar conflicts while defining boarders

Canada-French want state: Belgian Flames separations. Basques in Spain. Irish and Scotts independence from UK . Wars in Africa because tribes have been separated or united by Europe. Kashmir- Cyprus- Kurds in Turkey, Balkan wars. wars in Russia.

University Rector   September 27th, 2010 12:13 pm ET


Ehud Barak

In June 2007, the suspect imposed a siege on 1.5 million residents of Gaza. The siege, which is ongoing in 2010, is collective punishment according to International Law. The two year and a half long siege caused severe food and fuel shortages, intermittent drinking water and electricity supply, disruption to sewage treatment plants and shortages of medicine and essential medical equipment, affecting the lives of 1.5 million people – a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and Rome Statute.

On 27 December 2008, the suspect ordered the aerial bombardment of Gazan population centers. The attacks involved hundreds of fighter jet sorties, dropping hundreds of tons of bombs on Gazan neighborhoods. At least 1,300 people – men, women and children were killed and 5,300 were injured. Schools, hospitals and UN facilities were targeted, medical crews shot at and prevented from evacuating the wounded.

On 10 December 2008, a formal complaint was submitted by Lebanese lawyers to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, Netherlands, against Ehud Barak and four other Israelis:

Ehud Olmert,

Matan Vilnai,

Avi Dichter

and Gabi Ashkenazi on the suspicion that they had committed war crimes and crimes against humanity by ordering and maintaining a siege on Gaza.

Description of the suspect: a white man, about 65 years old, lower than average height, graying hair, brown eyes, with glasses.

Anyone who has information about the suspect when he is outside of the Israeli borders, please report immediately to a human rights lawyer. Relevant for countries with universal jurisdiction.

University Rector   September 27th, 2010 12:24 pm ET

International laws are making it increasingly difficult for Israeli diplomats, intelligence officers, generals and even former top military officers to travel the globe without being arrested on international warrants. Judging by the sheer number of outstanding warrants, any Israelis deemed to have committed crimes against Palestinian civilians are now at a higher risk than ever of being seized at airports and handed over to the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

The problem facing Israel has been highlighted by Interpol issuing arrest warrants for 27 Mossad agents directly involved in the recent planning and assassination of a Hamas leader in Dubai. That murder came on the heels of a UN report accusing Israel of war crimes during its siege and invasion of the Gaza Strip, making it even more likely that senior military and political figures involved in that operation could someday be arrested if they visit one of the many nations that are signatories to the international court.

Israel’s problem in respect to warrants is compounded by the fact that scores of retired military and intelligence figures earn a big money representing arms dealers and security companies. Others act in an advisory capacity to armies and militia groups worldwide. Those jobs involve considerable travel. Nowadays, with increased security at ports of entry in many nations, it is difficult for anyone to get on a plane, boat or train without leaving a trace of his or her identity.

That level of security poses a risk to all those deemed to have committed crimes against humanity. For wanted Israelis, those crimes include the following: the shelling of civilian areas of Gaza; the bulldozing of Palestinian homes; unlawful arrest, interrogation, detention and torture of suspects; the political and military authorizing of phosphorus munitions against civilian neighborhoods; the wanton use of cluster bombs to contaminate farmland as happened in Lebanon and the destruction of civilian infrastructure in order to punish the population by denying people water, electricity, food, proper medical care and sewerage facilities.

Rights groups and their lawyers say there is more than sufficient evidence to show that Israel has a case to answer for in all those criminal categories.

Hidden in lawyers’ desks throughout Europe are large numbers of warrants that have been drawn up at the request of human rights’ organizations. The warrants are targeted at a wide range of Israeli figures, including serving and former Cabinet ministers, intelligence chiefs, generals and military officers down to brigade level. The danger for all of those named is that, if it is learned they are visiting relatives or attending conferences outside Israel, the warrants will be dusted off.

Unfortunately, a country where no such warrant can be served is the United States because of political influence over “our” FBI. Nevertheless, Israel is well aware of the risks posed by international warrants. In the past warrants were issued in Colombia for three Israelis alleged to have trained paramilitaries who ran death squads. Colombia accused the three of having been at one time on the payroll of drug lord Pablo Escobar. Those warrants have not yet been served, just like the many warrants issued by the Russian authorities for Russian Jewish billionaires, who used their joint Israeli-Russian citizenship to find sanctuary in Israel after robbing Russia.

It is well known that Israel has an unstated policy of refusing to hand over any of its citizens. That has encouraged Jews from many countries to hide out in Israel when faced with arrest or imprisonment.

An indication of the risks facing Israel is that it almost lost one of its generals, Doron Almog, to a warrant on Sept. 10, 2005. He was on a flight to London’s Heathrow Airport when the Israeli embassy in London got a tip-off that lawyers were waiting at the airport to serve him with a warrant from the International Court, alleging he had committed war crimes by bulldozing over 50 homes in Gaza. The embassy was also told that Scotland Yard had officers standing by to arrest him. The moment Almog’s plane touched down in London, a diplomat from the embassy went on board and advised him not to leave, saying he had immunity because the plane was deemed to be Israeli territory.

Almog did as he was told and returned to Israel on the same plane less than 24 hours later. Reliable security sources accused the British authorities of tipping off the Israelis to avoid an international incident.

Rights groups and their lawyers angrily pointed out that the plane was not sovereign Israeli territory, and police officers should have taken the general from the plane by force. [No one tried a “planes are sovereign territory” argument when Australian historian Frederick Toeben was arrested at Heathrow en route to Dubai— Ed.] There was such an outcry over the issue that it is believed an arrest will be made should a similar case happen again in London.

In December 2009, an arrest warrant was issued in Britain for Tzipi Livni, who was the Israeli foreign secretary during the war in Lebanon and the invasion of Gaza. On hearing about the warrant, she canceled a planned trip to London.

Weeks earlier, one of the Israeli prime minister’s closest advisors also pulled out of a UK trip aimed at fundraising within the Jewish community.

The most worrying issue for Israel is that the UN report accusing it of war crimes in Gaza has been closely scrutinized by rights groups, who have meticulously drawn up warrants for a long list of Israeli figures.

John A   September 27th, 2010 2:18 pm ET

The violence started with the first middle east terror groups Irgun and the Sterngang. They were Jewish!

In 1947 war the Arabs deployed a small token gesture army against Israels much larger force, to save the Palestinians from Jewish terror groups Irgun and Sterngang. These gangs had the full backing of the new Israeli state and her American weapons, but they committed war crimes under the name of terror groups so Israel would not be blamed for the mass murder. The Arabs wanted to stop the Jewish atrocities when they sent a fraction of their armies to help the defenceless Palestinians.

The 1967 war by admission of Jewish leader David Ben-Gurion was started by Israel. Israel attacked Egypt and at the same time Israel sunk the USS liberty which was off shore and monitoring actions. Israel killed American service men in an attempt to prevent the world from knowing how the war started. But later even David Ben-Gurion claimed Egypt did not have enough soldiers on its boarder with Israel to pose any threat.

Some earlier blogs are an account of history which have been cooked up by Israel and American Jews. But your lies are coming to an end as the world now sees Israel as the true aggressor!! You cant be in a state of war for 60 years with supposed Arab enemies who have collectively a much smaller army and much higher casualties. The only winner from these problems has been Israel, as she expands in land and robs regional water supplies. The people who gain from war are the ones who wage war. For 60 years the west bought into Israeli propaganda because of a deep rooted sense of prejudice and because American news media is owned by Jews.

But the game is up and all who want to see can see (largely thanks to the internet in the last decade)
Israel has been the root cause of all the middle easts problems.

Rena B.   September 27th, 2010 7:32 pm ET

I have a small amount of pity for this woman who lost her husband, but I bet you she is crying over trees and grazing land over which she has no legal claim.

Palestinians think that if you plant trees or build a stone hut on uninhabited land, then you have established ownership. That's called squatting, at best, or, in a country with laws, it's called stealing.

Natalia   September 28th, 2010 12:49 am ET

I also live in constant fear.
Fear from people who don't like who I am, a woman. Fear from people who believe I have no right to be alive because I don't believe in their God.

Hope   September 28th, 2010 1:57 am ET

Rena B.

Your reference, implications that the Palestinians had been no more than squatters on someone else's property, like a mere herd of cattle grazing the land, a land which btw (belongs to them whether you like it or not) the sheer sounds of a desperate swelled egos displaying an overwhelming greed of a blood thirsty race that has lost it's conscious. On contrary, it is the immigrant Jew..who need to dissolve back into his original ancestral countries of Poland Russia Ukraine or wherever the hell they all came from, and leave Palestine to it rightful owners. You have made them suffer a great indignity for the past 60 years, torturing these defenseless people..and you -still- want more reprisal! Your comments make me sick.

miriam   September 29th, 2010 12:14 pm ET


The Subtantive Land Laws in the West Bank are based on the 1858 Ottoman Land Code. They were amended under the British Mandate and the Jordanian government and have remained essentially unchanged under Israeli rule. The laws regulate acquisition, utilisation, disposition and registration of all types of landholding.

Land registration was detailed and in 1967 there was a lengthy process to determine the legal status of uncultivated and abandoned non-urban land, which involved thorough investigation, notices in civilian centres, leniency and the chance to appeal and object.

Most Jewish communities were built on the "mewat" class of land, stony and broken land, not under cultivation or capable of it.

The WB had not belonged to an independent state since the destruction of the Jewish kingdoms of Judea and Samaria and certainly never part of a Palestinian state.

Whether you like it or not, under international law, the area of the WB was determined to be part of the Jewish state at the expiration of the British Mandate. That was the last legally binding resolution relevent to the territory and nevertheless, Israel has been repeatedly prepared to negotiate and compromise for the sake of peace and survival of the Jewish state.

Dishonest and racist rhetoric, based on denial and revision of Jewish history will not bring about a Palestinian state. Nor will it destroy the Jewish state however much you try.

Becket   September 29th, 2010 6:05 pm ET

The International Court of Justice ruled on July 9th 2004 on the Occupied Palestinian
Territory and its associated régime are contrary to international law; it states
the legal consequences arising from that illegality.
Legality of the construction by Israel of a wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
The Court determines the rules and principles of international law which are relevant to the question posed by the General Assembly. The Court begins by citing, with reference to Article 2, paragraph 4, of the United Nations Charter and to General Assembly resolution 2625 (XXV), the principles of the prohibition of the threat or use of force and the illegality of any territorial acquisition by such means, as reflected in customary international law. It further cites the principle of self determination of peoples, as enshrined in the Charter and reaffirmed by resolution 2625 (XXV). As regards international humanitarian law, the Court refers to the provisions of the Hague Regulation of 1907, which have become part of customary law, as well as the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 1949, applicable in those Palestinian territories which before the armed conflict of 1967 lay to the east of the 1949 Armistice demarcation line (or “Green Line”) and were occupied by Israel during that conflict. The Court further notes that certain human rights instruments (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) are applicable in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
The Court then considers the impact of the construction of the wall on the daily life of the inhabitants of the Occupied Palestinian Territory (destruction or requisition of private property, restrictions on freedom of movement, confiscation of agricultural land, cutting off of access to primary water sources, etc.). It finds that the construction of the wall and its associated régime are contrary to the relevant provisions of the Hague Regulations of 1907 and of the Fourth Geneva Convention; that they impede the liberty of movement of the inhabitants of the territory as guaranteed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; and that they also impede the exercise by the persons concerned of the right to work, to health, to education and to an adequate standard of living as proclaimed in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and in the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Lastly, the Court finds that this construction and its associated régime, coupled with the establishment of settlements, are tending to alter the demographic composition of the Occupied Palestinian Territory and thereby contravene the Fourth Geneva Convention and the relevant Security Council resolutions.

Who is dishonest and racist?

Smith in Oregon   October 2nd, 2010 6:39 am ET

Wow, Rick Sanchez was fired by CNN over a radio cast opinion by Rick Sanchez that Jew's run America's Media outlets.

I have repeatedly heard the same sentiments from a wide range of individuals who I wouldn't all place into the Zionists 'Jew bashers' bigoted phrase they often use to denote anyone that doesn't accept their pro-Israel Apartheid State of mind.

Rick Sanchez injected a great deal of energy, passion and enthusiasm into his newscasts and I'm certain he'll be missed by many CNN viewers.

Best wishes Rick on your next assignment.

miriam   October 2nd, 2010 7:22 pm ET


The answer to your question is fairly simple.

The UNGA, which is dominated by the non-democratic Arab League, OIC and non-alligned nations, who all vote consistently uniformly together against Israel, is dishonest and racist.

The same assembly created the ICC and passes biased resolutions referring Israel to various UN associated bodies for investigation based on one-sided, pre-judged mandates.

Politically motivated rhetoric, repeatedly using terms such as "illegal", "occupation", "international law" is abuse of real international law the likes of which most of the countries pushing for Israel's delegitimization violate consistently.

This is more than just dishonesty and racism.

It is hypocrisy.

miriam   October 3rd, 2010 12:08 pm ET


Perhaps you and your associates might begin to realize that it is not so politically correct to bash Jews and make distorted claims.

Similarly you might discover that being Jewish or a media owner does not automatically make you an Israel advocate.

What I have seen of Sanchez doesn't seem to correlate with your observations, particularly his "proof" of Israel's supposed evil actions just because the same accusations are made in other media outlets. Somehow that doesn't fit with the claims that Jewish media moguls are pro-Israel. It also shows irresponsible journalism since media often all report the same propaganda fed to them by the same dishonest sources.

Stories like that related above is an example of the one-sided propaganda distributed by the anti-Zionist activists which finds its way quickly into various main-stream media, some Jewish owned and some not, but bad journalism nevertheless.

Smith in Oregon   October 3rd, 2010 11:56 pm ET

Thanks entirely to the rabid refusal by the Zionist Israeli Government headed by Netanyahu to stop it's illegal settlement building on Palestinian lands, the ongoing peace meeting has stopped.

For years the Israeli Government has stated it cannot negotiate with criminals. Apparently when Israeli's are the criminals breaking International Laws and are loudly denounced by the European Union Consul as breaking International Laws by continuing the illegal settlement building, it's ok?

Israel's long history of breaking multiple serious International laws and not being dragged before the world's courts and held accountable, aside, what I find entirely unacceptable as an American:

Is for Netanyahu to attempt to EXTORT President Obama by linking the release of the evil Israeli Spy Pollard who is deservedly rotting in America's federal prison's OR Israel continues the murder and violence on it's Arabic neighbors and the illegal settlement building.

During the Cold War period between American and Russia, such extortion would almost be expected in a forced demand situation.

Israel is only pretending to be America's friend, demanding huge amounts of free American taxpayer dollars and free US military weapons while conducting itself as a common thug and gangster demanding a evil Israel Spy who greatly harmed America be released or it would continue it's evil, illegal ways?

miriam   October 5th, 2010 8:06 am ET


The "settlements" are not illegal under international law and the land in question is disputed, it never having been part of a Palestinian state.

Even European officials can be deceived by repeated Arab rhetoric and mantras about international law.

Claims of extortion are a distortion of fact, as is your obssession with US taxpayer dollars.

Negotiations took place for 17 years without any demand to freeze settlement activity even though Israel had voluntarily stopped building any new settlements and ceased any territorial expansion of existing settlements since 1993.

Israel introduced a moritorium for 10 months to bring the Palestinians back to negotiations and they still refused to talk for over 9 months, claiming that the moritorium was of insignificant importance. Suddenly, they want it continued for 2 months and then what?

It's time to stop blaming Israel for the collapse of talks.
If the land is disputed, both sides should be treated equally, both either building of freezing building, until an agreement is reached.

John A   October 10th, 2010 12:35 am ET

Miriam, The "settlements" are illegal under international law.

Miriam, do you take pride in being 100% wrong 100% of the time? Are you aiming to set a world record for misinformation?

Bye the way, you do know the world is not flat?

miriam   October 11th, 2010 12:40 pm ET

John A,

Which international LAW?

John A   October 14th, 2010 9:00 am ET


The laws you have been repeatedly told about, the laws you deny and the laws Israel breaks. i.e. the law recognized around the world and only disputed by Israel.

Debating with an Israeli is like hearing a criminal plead innocence to the judge on the ground no laws exist.

Time to lock up the Zionist criminals and throw away the key.

miriam   October 14th, 2010 4:46 pm ET

John A,

Which LAWS?

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