Democratic lobby group defends Israel’s demolition of Palestinian hamlet

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Abdul-Ghani and Fadwa Awawdeh are seen among the debris of an Israeli demolition in the Palestinian community of Humsa al-Fuqa, in the occupied West Bank, November 4, 2020. (photo: Ahmad al-Bazz / Activestills)
Blaming Palestinians for their own displacement, Democratic Majority for Israel is pushing back against its party’s criticism of the largest West Bank demolition in a decade, memo reveals.

By Alex Kane |  +972 Magazine  | Dec 16, 2020

‘It’s completely unjustifiable to be rationalizing kicking people out of their homes in the middle of a global pandemic,’
— Emily Mayer, political director of the anti-occupation Jewish group IfNotNow

When Israeli bulldozers stormed the West Bank community of Humsa al-Fuqa (Khirbet Humsa) and demolished its structures on Nov. 3, leaving 11 Palestinian families homeless, some Democrats in Washington, D.C. took notice.

Two weeks after the Israeli demolition, which took place under the cover of U.S. election day, Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wisc.) and 39 of his Congressional colleagues sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo criticizing Israel’s actions as “a serious violation of international law” and an example of “creeping annexation.” Pocan’s letter also demanded that Pompeo examine whether Israel had utilized U.S.-made equipment during the demolition operation.

The demolition of Humsa al-Fuqa has attracted widespread attention in recent weeks. Israel’s army routinely demolishes Palestinian structures in the occupied West Bank that are built without Israeli-issued permits, which are nearly impossible to obtain. But this particular demolition, which was approved by the Israeli Supreme Court, led to the destruction of 76 structures — the largest amount demolished in a single operation over the past decade.

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