Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How settlements in the West Bank are creating a new reality, brick by brick

Continuing our series of exclusive reports, we look at how Israel’s growing infrastructure in the region threatens not just the form but the very possibility of a future Palestinian state

Rory McCarthy in Jerusalem

Guradian.co.uk, August 24, 2009

There is a hilltop east of Jerusalem with striking views down into Jericho, across the dry slopes of the West Bank and on to the Dead Sea. From the red ochre of the rock came the name Ma’ale Adumim, Hebrew for the Red Ascent.

Today it is a city of more than 30,000 people, with red-roofed apartment blocks, shopping malls, a public swimming pool and ancient olive trees sitting on neat roundabouts. A major highway runs down the hill, across the valley up into the centre of Jerusalem and beyond, connecting conveniently to Tel Aviv and the Mediterranean coast.

The rise of Ma’ale Adumim captures the success of Israel’s vast settlement project and the extent of the challenge posed to any future Palestinian state by the settlements and the often overlooked infrastructure of Israel’s occupation.

Continues >>

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