The settlement of Qadumim east of Qalqilia and directly adjacent to the villages of Kafer Qaddoum and Jet has become an enclave for extremist settlers who practice and preach the biblical maxim, “The Promised Land”.
On one edge of the settlement a Jewish yeshiva college has been built, graduating generations of radical Jews who believe in Zionism to the core.
Since the settlement was constructed in 1976 by a group of the outlawed Kahana movement, confiscation of land and water resources has spread rampantly in addition to the daily attacks and harassment from the settlers against the Palestinians and their properties.
Consecutive Israeli governments have allocated millions of dollars to annex land, build housing units and open bypass roads, which has severed the geographical unity for the lands of Kafer Qaddoum.
The settlers purposely took over the Mohammed Mountain, west of the village and established neighborhoods there with complete disregard to the decisions of the Israel High Court. In addition, residents have been made to endure the uprooting of their olive, fig and almond trees by the settlers.
Residents of the villages say the settlers use a variety of provocations against them including spraying poisonous chemicals on their trees and crops, which cause them tremendous losses. Still, they say they will not be intimidated and will not leave their orchards no matter how much the settlers want to push them out.
Over the years, the Kafer Qadoum has seen a number of confrontations between its residents and Israeli settlers and soldiers. Sometimes, anti-settlement Israelis come and join the protests, considering all settlements in occupied territories to be illegal.
Residents say the settlers have tried several times to break into the village but have been confronted by the villagers, who manage to ward them off.
Settlers have even cut off the main road leading to the village, which has been surrounded by settlement activity. The entire area, say the residents, now has a “settlement” look to it with red tile roofs lining the road. Farmers can no longer reach their land in that area or pick olives from their tree during the olive-picking season.
Still, there is yet another battle taking place, represented by flag-raising. On every possible occasion, residents raise the Palestinian flag, also raising the wrath of the settlers whose aim is to turn the area into a Jewish and Israeli district.
After the outbreak of the Intifada, things only got worse. Now residents of Kafer Qaddoum cannot go to Nablus or Qalqilia except through mountainous dirt roads where Israeli forces and settlers are often on the lookout.
Today, Qadumim has also been turned into the so-called civil administration for the Qalqilia area and houses a detention center where field interrogations of Palestinian detainees are carried out.