Israel’s government has left most of the country's Bedouin population unprotected against rocket and missile attacks from Gaza. Most Bedouin communities have no missile warning sirens or bomb shelters and are not protected by the Iron Dome missile defense system.
Israel’s Bedouin Population Left Without Missile Shelters, Warning Sirens And Iron Dome Protection
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Israel’s government has left most of the country's Bedouin population unprotected against rocket and missile attacks from Gaza, Ha’aretz reported.
Most Bedouin towns and villages in the south of Israel lack any protection from Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system. And those Bedouin settlements also lack bomb shelters and missile warning sirens.
Two Bedouin children, 11-year-old Maram Alwakili and her 13-year-old sister Atil were both wounded by shrapnel from a Hamas rocket Monday.
Maram is still hospitalized in intensive care fighting to live. Her sister is also still hospitalized, but is reportedly listed in good condition.
Many Bedouin males serve in the IDF.
Approximately 200,000 Bedouin live in the Negev region of Israel, almost all in their own villages.
The IDF classifies the area of the Negev where the two wounded girls live as an “open area” – meaning the Iron Dome will not shoot down a missile or rocket aimed at it. The IDf essentially claims that the Bedouin population of the Negev is spread out thinly and therefore isn’t assigned Iron Dome protection.
Gadi Algazi of the Tarabut-Hitchabrut Arab-Jewish movement for social and political change doesn’t buy that argument.
“We are not talking about one or two people in those areas. There are 200,000 Bedouin in the Negev, 70,000 or 80,000 of whom live in what are described as unrecognized villages. These aren’t isolated farms with two families. [The average size of these unrecognized villages] is three times that of the average Jewish settlement in the Beer Sheva area,” an angered Algazi told Ha’aretz, adding that “Israel tramples on its citizens – and that’s not only true of the Bedouin."
A survey conducted last week by the nonprofit Abraham Initiative reportedly found that most of the Bedouin communities lack even the most basic protection and emergency assistance.
“In most of the [Bedouin] regional councils, there are no shelters, not even public ones,” the Abraham Initiative wrote in a letter to the ministries of defense and internal affairs.
Neither appear to have tried to do anything to alleviate that dangerous situation – a situation that exists because the government refuses to recognize the Bedouin communities as legal towns and villages, Professor Oren Yiftachel, a geographer from Ben-Gurion University, claims.
“The situation highlights the damage caused by the failure to recognize the Bedouin communities. These communities are being punished twice: Once when they’re deprived of basic facilities, such as electricity, running water and schools, and the second time when they are not provided with security due to their being unrecognized,” Yiftachel told Ha’aretz.