The Breaking of Tel Rumeida

The Breaking of Tel Rumeida
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“You need to shave his skin off and throw him into the Dead Sea.” Israelis escalate hate violence in occupied Hebron where a seriously injured Palestinian suspected in an attack against an Israeli soldier was summarily executed as he was lying on the ground helpless by another Israeli soldier. Now, Israeli soldiers, and settler terrorists are screaming for the blood of the Palestinian whose videotape of the killing prevented the government from burying it under the rug, along with thousands of other acts of violence against Palestinians

By Dezeray Lyn

Cries for violence against a Palestinian father in Hebron’s Tel Rumeida neighborhood came like a deluge through social media.  Stoning, burning, killing and strangulation.  Another said, Bring us his address, we’ll make a film about him too.  And wanted posters.  Incitements of violence against Imad Abu Shamsiya were settler-disseminated throughout the besieged Hebron neighborhood which, since early October of last year, has become an unmitigated killing field.


Comments on social media calling for violence against Abu Shamsiya.

The film prompting incitement is that of the Israeli forces army medic execution of a 21 year old Palestinian Abd al-Fattah al-Sharif (Abed Fatah al-Sharif) who’d been, moments earlier incapacitated by Israeli forces bullets for an alleged attack on the occupying army.  The grizzly footage was captured by Palestinian videographer Abu Shamsiya who brought it to Israeli officials and has since been firebombed, threatened with the burning deaths of him and his family as well as having his home raided by Israeli forces.


Abu Shamsiya pictured here in al-Khalil (Hebron) last year. Photo Credit: International Solidarity Movement

The soldier, congratulated by ideological extremist settler, Baruch Marzel, formerly of the ultra-right Jewish National Front seconds after the execution, has since been released to a five day open detention.

There are problems with this.

While Israeli law may have designated this killing as a manslaughter, the soldier, whose identity is being guarded while Abu Shamsiya’s identity is being smeared across Tel Rumeida under words calling for his death, is in fact, a murderer.

Sharif’s killer will also, during his remanding to extendable open detention, have rights to family visitation.  During these visits, the agony of Sharif’s family, who will never see their son again, will grind on unabatedly in the corridors of the Tel Rumeida neighborhood.  During these visits, the besieged Shamsiya family will continue vigils for their safety against the storm created, fueled and exacerbated by the policing force in the region, Israeli forces.

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Tel Rumeida is breaking.  Blood has been running through the streets in the form of Palestinian youth after Palestinian youth gunned down by Israeli settlers and soldiers in the Israeli military controlled area which was declared a closed military zone on November 1st of last year, successfully evacuating the area of human rights monitoring bodies who were reporting on the ongoing and escalating violence.  I know this intimately, as I was one of them.

I know the fear of having violence being incited against you because the same thing was done to me as I worked with the International Solidarity Movement in Tel Rumeida in September and October of last year, watching human rights monitors, including myself, being spit on, punched, chased, hit and attacked by Israeli settlers while monitoring abuses against occupied Palestinians.  And then came the wanted posters.

Neta Golan, one of the founders of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) has continued the struggle against the vaccumization of Tel Rumeida where violence and bloodletting levied against the occupied Palestinian population has continued sans the eye of internationals.  The ISM has documented over a decade’s worth of what has been seven decades of crimes committed against Palestinians in the West Bank of Palestine and in the besieged Gaza strip.

“Tel Rumeida has been a closed military zone since the first of November since several Palestinians have been executed and many others wounded and arrested. All the residents are harassed and humiliated daily.”  Israeli forces also stormed Hebron radio stations and issued military stop broadcast orders citing incitement against Israel, grand criminals of the region and supporters of worldwide terror.

The video, Willful Killing, containing graphic and infuriating content, furthers the egregious nature by which Israeli military and political officials incite violence and promise legal fortification for those Israelis who carry it out.  The fact that these statements made by upper-echelon players in the Israeli state have been a precursor to Israeli soldier and settler killing after killing after killing of Palestinian should make the world take notice.  As should the fact that an unrelated family to an Israeli soldier and army medic murdering a Palestinian man is under threat of death.

Neta’s contention is supported by every image spilling from the open gashes of Tel Rumeida, as well as all over embattled Palestine.  “The Palestinian Nakba is ongoing from Tel Rumeida to Duma to Gaza Palestinians need to choose between the safety of their children and staying on their land. This is what ethnic cleansing looks like.”

Ethnic cleansing is a crime.  And one that world nations have chosen not to react to.

Why do bodies like the UN exist when denouncement of acts of depravity go unfollowed by action against and for the prevention of future depravity?

Through the detritus and gun smoke, Tel Rumeida is home to Palestinian families, children, grandparents, sisters, brothers, lovers, artists, poets, students and friends.  The brazen acts of daily terrorism of Israeli settlers and Israeli forces in the area continue to be digested by the world without so much as a whimper.


Map of al-Khalil (Hebron). Tel Rumeida is on the lower left just south of Bab al Zawiya.

In 1954, when the catastrophe was 6 years ongoing, William Golding wrote the Lord of the Flies about a group of young boys stranded on a deserted island whose chaotic rule entrenched in fear and hatred eventually spiraled into madness.  The book has been the subject of endless existential dialogue.  Its themes screamed through my brain every day I spent in the occupied territory.

Extremist settlers, stomping confidently through Tel Rumeida’s closed military zone, machine gun and entitlement armed, remind me so much of those kids on the island, fearing Beast, an intimation of their own wretchedness.  “Life… is scientific.  I know there isn’t no beast… but I know there isn’t no fear either.  Unless we get frightened of people.”  But the shadow Israel is shrieking from, is of itself.  Woe to the masses if introspection ever finds them.

“Maybe there is a beast.  Maybe it’s only us.”

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Managing Writer

Managing Writer at The Arab Daily News online
The Arab Daily News is the newspaper of record for the Arab American Community, and publishes and writes original articles on news, features, commentary, business, politics, sports, entertainment and more. Managing Writer of the Arab Daily News, reviews and posts articles for the journalists and bloggers who submit their writings for this popular online newspaper newspaper.
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