(Burning trees, illustrative. Photo: Wikipedia Commons)

The agricultural terrorism by Arabs against Jews in Israel continues unabated. Unidentified vandals set fire to an Israeli cherry orchard in the groves on Givat Ha’Mukhtar, located between Kfar Etzion and the Arab town of Beit Ummar, and set fire to a number of cherry orchards. The pre-dawn attack, using burning tires, came less than two weeks before the annual Gush Etzion Regional Council’s cherry-picking festival.

(Photo: Josh Hasten / Gush Etzion Foundation)

The blaze burned for a number of hours before firefighters managed to bring it under control, and left significant damage in its wake. Local residents reported heavy damage, and estimated tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of destroyed fruit, trees, and agricultural equipment.

A statement issued by the regional council described the event as the most recent development in a larger wave of attempted arsons against its orchards over the past weeks and months. In April, Kfar Etzion farmers reported tons of cherries stolen overnight, and 150 grape vines were destroyed overnight in Tomer, close to the Jordan river.

Further South, communities near to Gaza,  have repeatedly been targeted by Hamas’s kite-bombs, leading to fields and forests burning down.

Police swiftly arrived at the scene of the arson attack and commenced an investigation, but have so far stayed silent on possible suspects. Local residents believe that those responsible are Arabs from the nearby village of Beit Ummar.


UPDATE AGRICULTURAL TERRORISM – last night terrorists hurled 3 burning tires into Kibbutz Kfar Etzion causing tens of thousands of NIS in damage. Please watch the video to see how you can help.

Posted by The Gush Etzion Foundation on Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Gush Etzion Regional Council Head Shlomo Ne’eman was at pains to clearly identify the culprits, “We are witness to repeated, organized attacks by Arab rioters on Jewish agriculture. This is not about bored teenagers. It seriously harms the nation of Israel and Israeli sovereignty.”

Ne’eman continued, “It is inconceivable that Jewish farmers should be unable to work their land. These rioters continue their traditional attempts to banish Gush Etzion’s Jews from their land, and our unashamed response is that they will continue to see us here, standing up for our values and living on our land forever.”

(Photo: Josh Hasten / Gush Etzion Foundation)