Moral Low Ground

US Government

Palestinian Family Ordered to Share East Jerusalem Home with Israelis

March 11, 2011 by Brett Wilkins in American Government with 0 Comments

The Hamdallahs: ground zero of Israeli ethnic cleansing. (Photo: Michal Fattal)

This is what Israel’s campaign of slow-motion ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people looks like at ground level:

Israeli authorities are expected to force a Palestinian family out of the home they’ve lived in for nearly 60 years following a court’s decision in favor of a wealthy American Jew and settler patron in a property dispute, Haaretz reports. Right-wing Israelis are now expected to move into a room in the East Jerusalem home of the Hamdallah family, bringing armed guards with them and disturbing the Palestinians’ daily lives.

Irving Moskowitz, an American millionaire, has been fighting an 11-year court battle with the Hamdallahs over the home, which is adjacent to the Ma’aleh Zeitim Jewish enclave in occupied East Jerusalem. Moskowitz bought all of Ma’aleh Zeitim in 1990, and part of the Hamdallah property was part of the purchase. Through representatives in Israel, Moskowitz has been trying to evict the Hamdallahs for years.

In 2005, the Jerusalem District Court ruled that the Hamdallahs must evacuate portions of the home built after 1989, but could keep older parts of the home because of the statute of limitations on Moskowitz’s claim. The American now “legally” owns one bedroom and the front yard of the home that the Hamdallahs have lived in since 1952. Sixteen members of the family inhabit the house, with a couple and a child living in the bedroom the court ordered vacated.


“Three people live in this room,” Khaled Hamdallah told Haaretz. “We don’t know what to do. I don’t even care anymore. I feel like dying. They want to throw us out completely. The police is with them, the judges are with them. So what’s the point?”

Shlomo Lecker, the Hamdallah’s attorney, said the court “will evacuate the room and bring in a family and two armed guards. I think [the settlers] want to make their (the Hamdallahs) lives hell until they finally are forced to leave.”

And in doing so, the Zionists will have created the latest victims of a concerted campaign of slow-motion ethnic cleansing that dates back to even before the founding of the Jewish state in 1948. Ironic, isn’t it, that a people who created Israel largely as a refuge from any future incidences of genocide like the Holocaust they just endured would themselves be the perpetrators of a tragic 62-year-long ethnic cleansing of their new state’s original inhabitants.

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