Is it possible that the Israeli government has realized one of my secret dreams, to manufacture a giant cloak of invisibility, as touted in the Harry Potter saga?
Wishful silver-lining – they have just proved astoundingly adept at doing what governments the world over do best – concealing.
The Israeli defence ministry has concealed information about the extent of illegal settlement-building in the West Bank, a leading newspaper reports.
It suggests most construction took place without the right permits, and more than 30 settlements were built in part on land owned by Palestinians.
The defence ministry has not commented on the report, which appears to contradict Israel’s official position that it does not requisition private land for settlements.
The database – compiled over about two years – was leaked to Haaretz by the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din.
It focuses not only on some 100 unauthorised settler outposts, but also on about 120 settlements officially authorised since Israel captured the territory in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.
An analysis of the data shows a big majority – about 75% – of construction in settlements was carried out without the right permit or in contravention of permits issued, Haaretz reported.
In more than 30 settlements, buildings including schools, synagogues and police stations, had been built on private Palestinian land. [Continues…]
Inevitably, the world will tsk en masse and passively request that Israel cease the construction, before returning to more pressing matters.
Such as the banning of red ink on children’s report cards.