By Amin Abu Warda, Palestine News Network
Happiness and sadness, mixed feelings appeared on the face of resident Mohammad Amin Daoud, from Hares village, near Nablus, as he was preparing for the wedding of his son Amin, and the sadness which the military bulldozers left after leveling his barracks.
Daoud said that soldiers leveled his barracks which are filled with construction tools, and equipment, without any prior notice and without allowing him to empty them.
“My losses are estimated by a million shekels”, Daoud said, “For 26 years, I have been subjected to similar attacks by soldiers and settlers, because I refused to leave my land for them and their settlements”.
Daoud is annoyed by the lack of attention by the media and official institutions in spite of the continuous attacks he suffers, and the repeated attempts to annex his land.
The Israeli army attempted to bargain with him in order to give them some parts of his land to be used in constructing a new road for the settlers, but he rejected to give away any part of the land he inherited from his father, and ancestors.
The Israeli security even attempted to bargain with him in order to collaborate with them, in exchange of improving his financial situation, but he refused to betray his country and people for any price they offer.
Daoud said that an Israeli security officer once offered him 3.5 million dollars in exchange for his land, but he rejected the offer knowing that his land would be used for Israeli settlements which occupy the land and abuse the people, “I refuse to sell my land, I won’t sell it to settlers who occupy our land and country”, he said.
“They even leveled my home, and claimed that it was illegally constructed”, he added, “There are 50 family members living in the residential building, including my ten sons, my brothers and their families”.
The barracks, which he uses for storage, were leveled the first time in 1996, then once again in 1997, causing considerable losses.
“I wonder why does our leadership rush to condemn attacks carried by Palestinians who retaliate to the Israeli violations, and remain silent when Israel levels our homes, and constructions”, Daoud said, “This is terrorism, isn’t it!!”
The most painful feeling he suffers is seeing his 70-year-old mother walking among the destructed constructions, trying to find anything which is still intact.
In spite of all of these violations, he continues to plant his land, and continues his trade and work, challenging the attacks and organized violations carried out by both the settlers and the Israeli soldiers.
“Land is the real fortune Israeli soldiers and settlers are trying to take away from us”, he stated, “We should protect it, and save it, it is our dignity we are protecting”.