The Foundation for Middle East Peace and B’Tselem invite you to
Forcible Transfer is a War Crime: West Bank Pogroms are Working
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
featuring Kareem Jubran (B’Tselem) & Sarit Michaeli (B’Tselem) with Dr. Yara Asi (FMEP)
Forcible transfer of Palestinians in the West Bank is a reality. The Israeli government, its security forces, and Israeli settlers are actively targeting Palestinian communities through a growing matrix of tools geared towards making their lives so economically untenable, functionally unbearable, and fundamentally unsafe that they are compelled to abandon their homes and lands, disperse their communities, and give up their means of earning their livelihoods.
Israel’s long-used methods include forbidding Palestinians from legally building homes and other structures, preventing access to infrastructure, including electricity, water, and roads, and ongoing demolitions in 60% of the West Bank. Targeted violence carried out by settlers, and tolerated if not actively supported by Israeli security forces — – including harassment, threats, destruction of property, and outright terrorism in the formed of armed, lethal attacks — has been used to suppress and threaten Palestinian life in the West Bank – and it has been accelerating in frequency and brazenness under the new Israeli government. Together, these factors have already led to the displacement of multiple Palestinian shepherding communities in the West Bank. Today, more communities are in danger, as Israel seeks to remove Palestinians in key areas across the West Bank in order to take over their land.
In this briefing, we describe these communities and discuss the official and unofficial tools Israel used to displace them and how this oppression amounts to the war crime of forcible transfer.
See below for speaker bios.
Follow our speakers:
- B’Tselem: https://www.btselem.org/
- Sarit Michaeli on Twitter: https://twitter.com/saritm0
- Yara Asi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Yara_M_Asi
Resources from B’Tselem:
- The Pogroms are Working – The Transfer is Already Happening, September 2023: https://www.btselem.org/publications/202309_the_pogroms_are_working_the_transfer_is_already_happening
- Killings, pogroms, expulsion: Israel dispossesses Palestinians of their lands using settler violence. (August 2023) → https://www.btselem.org/press_release/20230810_killings_pogroms_expulsion_israel_dispossesses_palestinians_of_their_lands_using_settler_violence
- 3 Bedouin communities were displaced: Ein Samiya in May 2023, Ras a-Tin transferred in July 2022, and Al-Qabun, transferred in August 2023 –>
On the Israeli settler herding outposts: “The Wild West: Grazing, Seizing, and Looting by Israeli Settlers in the West Bank” – a joint report by Haqel and Kerem Navot → https://www.keremnavot.org/thewildwest
Reporting on the forced transfer of these communities:
- +972: ‘It’s like 1948’: Israel cleanses vast West Bank region of nearly all Palestinians → https://www.972mag.com/area-c-ethnic-cleansing-settler-violence/
- Jewish Currents: “The End of Widady” → https://jewishcurrents.org/the-end-of-widady
- Ha’aretz: “Opinion | Don’t Be Fooled: Israel’s Far-right Government Plots Its West Bank Moves With a Calculated Frenzy” → https://www.haaretz.com/opinion/2023-09-05/ty-article-opinion/.premium/dont-be-fooled-israels-government-plots-its-west-bank-moves-with-a-calculated-frenzy/0000018a-668e-db76-afaf-ffcf242a0000
- Ha’aretz: “Settlers Have a Very Effective System for Forcing Palestinians Out of Their Homes” → https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/2023-09-01/ty-article-magazine/.highlight/settlers-have-a-very-effective-system-for-forcing-palestinians-out-of-their-homes/0000018a-4c1a-d775-a79a-5d9b526c0000
- AP: “3 small Palestinian villages emptied out this summer. Residents blame Israeli settler attacks” → https://apnews.com/article/israel-settlers-bedouin-palestinians-displacement-shepherds-9207aa17efcaf9fda58793a847f7e560?fbclid=IwAR2YGtxACjxJGPVFHrfmIFG1OxmOK8hbMgy2qTg7mg74WZxgC8IwCU3nu48
On the demolition of the school in Ein Samiya:
- Diplomats Condemn Settler Violence and Ein Samiya School Demolition during a visit to Burqa and Ras at-Tin → https://www.eeas.europa.eu/delegations/palestine-occupied-palestinian-territory-west-bank-and-gaza-strip/diplomats-condemn-settler-violence-and-ein-samiya-school-demolition-during-visit-burqa-and-ras-tin_en?s=206&fbclid=IwAR3VxjUpdAarsmlboBjBJfoG6HhiA7e6WAPf7gvnleBoNo9HUdW3Hf-_e4k
Activists accompanying shepherds on the ground//”Protective Presence” –> see these Facebook posts from activist Rabbi Arik Ascherman:
FMEP has been paying attention to the threats to these communities, in particular in Masafer Yatta in the South Hebron Hills. See this page for more conversations on this topic.
Kareem Jubran is B’Tselem’s Field Research Director. He joined B’Tselem as a field researcher in 2004 and became director of the department in 2009. Prior to joining the organization, Jubran followed a career in education as a lecturer in sociology in an academic college in Ramallah. He holds a BA and an MA in sociology from Sofia University, Bulgaria. Jubran serves as a board member of the Palestinian Counseling Center, an NGO devoted to developing and improving mental health concepts and services in Palestine. He is also on the board of directors of Palestinian human rights NGO Ensan.
Sarit Michaeli is International Advocacy Officer at B’Tselem. She joined B’Tselem in 2004, as its media spokesperson and director of public outreach. In addition, Sarit documents demonstrations in the West Bank, with a focus on Israeli security forces’ misuse of crowd control weapons and is active in Israel’s anti-occupation movement, specifically, as part of “אקלים אחד مناخ واحد One Climate” an activist group campaigning for climate justice between the river and the sea. Sarit has an MA (Distinction) in Gender Studies from Birkbeck College, University of London, and a BA in graphic design from Camberwell College of Art, the London Institute.
Dr. Yara Asi, Non-resident Fellow at FMEP, is an Assistant Professor at the University of Central Florida in the School of Global Health Management and Informatics and a Visiting Scholar at the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University in her capacity as Co-Director of the Palestine Program for Health and Human Rights. She is also a Non-resident Fellow at the Arab Center Washington DC, a 2020-2021 Fulbright US Scholar to the West Bank, and the co-chair of the Palestine Health Justice Working Group in the American Public Health Association. She has also written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Nation, +972 Magazine, The New Arab, and The Conversation, and has been featured on Al Jazeera, The World, and other outlets. Her forthcoming book with Johns Hopkins University Press will examine war as a public health crisis.