They're Ruining Another Good Holiday
And Telling the PA to F*** Off
First the Israeli Government tried to ruin Hannukah, by starting the Gaza War during the holdiday and naming it "Cast Lead" after a line in popular Hannukah song.
Now they are trying to ruin Tu B'Shvat by using the "New Year of Trees" to plant trees in West Bank Settlements, while declaring that these settlements are:
... an indisputable part of Israel forever. This is an idea that is accepted by the majority of Israelis and is part of international agreements [sic!]
On Sunday, Prime Minister Netanyahu traveled to Gush Etzion and Ma'aleh Adumim to plant trees. In Ma'aleh Adumim, at a ceremony with city officials and the Jewish National Fund, Netanyahu once again reaffirmed Israel's ties with the settlement blocs and with Ma'aleh Adumim.
We will build here as part of greater Jerusalem. I came here from Gush Etzion, which is Jerusalem's southern gate. Now we're in Ma'aleh Adumim which is Jerusalem's eastern gate. Close to Tu Bishvat I will plant a tree in Ariel, just as we planted a college there which has turned into Ariel University.
It should be noted that none of these settlements are within or border the municipality of Jersusalem - not even the enlarged annexed municipality that includes East Jerusalem, itself carved off from the West Bank unilaterally by the Israelis.
Since the Palestinians have made it clear that they will not agree to a peace that leaves their future state carved into Bantstans by Maaleh Adumin and Ariel, both of which are deep within the West Bank, Netanyahu has effectively told both the peace process and the PA to take a hike.
It is also interesting to note, that in the construction Maaleh Adumim alone, it is estimated that 1000 olive trees belonging to Palestinian farmers were uprooted. And Netanyahu tries to build support for this by coopting a holiday whose symbolism is of restoring nature, and the environment, and of being good stewards of the Land.
Thus we see, yet again, how the occupation not only oppresses and dispossesses the Palestinians, it is ruining the Jewish religion and perverting our culture.