Archive - Aug 21, 2008

HEBRON REFLECTION: Ten years since demolition of Jaber home

Ten years ago this week, the Israeli military demolished ‘Atta and Rodeina Jaber's home for the first time.  "The rubble is still in my face, on the ground," ‘Atta told Christian Peacemaker Team members as he and his family harvested tomatoes in the hot, late-morning sun. "If I forget, the rubble reminds me. Every day."

On 19 August 1998, 140 Israeli soldiers and two large bulldozers arrived to destroy the home that ‘Atta and Rodeina Jaber had built six years before on land where Atta's family has lived for more than 100 years.

Their land in the Beqa'a Valley is in Area C, which is under full Israeli control. Palestinians are routinely denied building permits in Area C.

Neighbors, family members, Israelis and internationals immediately came together to rebuild a two-room house with donated and supplies. But on 16 September, the army demolished this house as well. When ‘Atta tried to hand his infant son to a soldier to take to safety, he was beaten and then arrested. He spent four days in jail and was unable to work for eight months due to his injuries.