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Posts tagged ‘Bethlehem’

From martyrs to elections

Returning to Bethlehem after an absence of around nine months, one of the first things I noticed were the new posters. Even by the summer of 2004, the pictures of the shahid were fading, and recent additions were few and far between. A year on, and the faces of martyrs have been replaced by aspiring politicians, a reminder of the local elections that took place in the Bethlehem district not so long ago. Perhaps this is an example of the kind of ‘reform’ urged on the Palestinians by the U.S. and her allies. Read more

The debate over Israel’s separation wall part 1

This summer I have been able to see for myself the effects of the illegal Separation Wall being built around Bethlehem. I spent two months in Palestine, teaching English in Jerusalem and volunteering at Bethlehem Bible College. My daily walks to the College offered me an opportunity to see the relentless expansion of the prison walls.

For every metre of the Wall there is a story of dispossession and loss. The librarian at the Bible College, Hala, and her husband Daoud, have experienced the consequences of the ‘security fence’ at first hand. Shortly before the start of the intifada they used their life savings to purchase some land in Beit Jala as an inheritance for their children. Read more

Letter from Bethlehem

Since the start of the intifada most Palestinians have greeted the various peace efforts with weary scepticism or downright pessimism. However, some refuse to let the vicissitudes of political manoeuvring affect their vision for the future. Daoud Nassar’s story is one of both hope and despair, where injustice meets inspiration.

Daoud lives with his wife and children in Bethlehem, and his family owns a piece of land southwest of the city. One Friday morning, in the summer sun, I stood with Daoud looking out across his fields and beyond, up the hill towards the Neve Daniel settlement. Read more