Israeli Terrorism Cripples Palestinian Farmers

Mel Frykberg/IPS

Olive harvest season is under way across the occupied Palestinian territories…Traditionally a festive season, this year’s harvest is once again overshadowed by tight Israeli restrictions, settler attacks and a weaker yield due to harsh climatic conditions.

A study published in 2012 by The Applied Research Institute Jerusalem estimated that since 1967, Israeli authorities have uprooted 800,000 Palestinian olive trees in the West Bank.

In the past year alone, more than 9,300 trees were destroyed in the West Bank, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross…

Besides the physical destruction of these olive trees, many Palestinian farmers in the West Bank require Israeli permits to access their land in restricted areas near illegal Israeli settlements.

Israeli settlements are Jewish communities built illegally on Palestinian land. Today, between 600,000 and 750,000 Israeli settlers live in at least 250 illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Both sides of my family come from a farming history…from Scotland and Canada on my father’s side…from Italy and SudTirol on my mother’s side; but, my youth and adult life is urban and industrial. Till retirement, that is. Here I am in semi-rural northern New Mexico. Still, no farming in my life. But, I understand the needs and pride that accompanies farming life. And fightback against illegal colonial settlers doesn’t require a stretch to get my support.

Retired Black firefighter sues city after mural depicts her in white-face


City attorneys and commissioners will meet next week to discuss a lawsuit filed by Boynton Beach’s first Black female firefighter after her image was represented as white on a public mural.

Latosha Clemons, who rose through the ranks to become Boynton’s first Black deputy fire chief, is seeking more than $100,000 in damages, according to the lawsuit…

A photograph of three women — Clemons and two white female firefighters — served as the template for the mural, which when completed, however, portrayed all three women as white. The 2019 project by the city’s art commission to honor the fire department also included a depiction of Glenn Joseph, the city’s former fire chief, who is also Black, and whose image also was represented as that of a white man.

I often have a conflict deciding whether acts like this originate in stupid or ignorance. In this instance, the only differentiation lies between stupid and bigoted.