The Great Olive Tree Hoax

UPDATE 10 am Israel time Wednesday:

Multiple rockets were fired at southern Israel last evening at the Chof Ashkelon region and at the Eshkol region. At least two Israelis were hospitalized with emotional trauma.


Some of the Palestinians' beloved olive trees that were ruthlessly cut down on Sunday by . . . the Palestinians.

Even though your humble servant is in Eilat today and had planned to write about the beautiful waters of Chof Al-Mog, he just could not resist the unbelievable story emanating from Judea and Samaria in the last two days about olive tree destruction.

In short, it’s olive harvest time again, a time for the Palestinians to play the “olive” card with every international media organization and every self-proclaimed “human rights” group from Israel to Timbuktu. 

Two days ago we witnessed a coordinated public relations blitz with PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi leading the way followed by Robert Serry the “U.N. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process”, and four Israeli so-called “rights” organizations: Rabbis for Human Rights, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, Yesh Din, and B’Tselim.

Claiming (with no evidence whatsoever) that 450 Palestinian olive trees have recently been “vandalized”, Ashrawi once again descended to the depths of mendacity: “We urge every country with a diplomatic mission to Palestine to dispatch observer teams to Palestinian olive groves to discourage “attacks by settlers” and to document any abuse that occurs.”

Serry, ever the Palestinian lapdog, somberly chimed in: “I am alarmed at recent reports that “Israeli settlers in the West Bank” have repeatedly attacked Palestinian farmers and destroyed hundreds of their olive trees at the height of the harvest season. These acts are reprehensible . . .”

For their part, these “settlers” in the “West Bank”–in reality Jewish community members in Judea and Samaria–have been trying to tell the world for years that it is the Palestinians themselves who have been destroying their own olive trees–with the help of the so-called “human rights” organizations.

But nobody has been listening. After all, how bizarre would it be to have the Palestinians destroying their iconic symbol, the olive tree? It just seems too ridiculous to believe–too preposterous to even contemplate.

Except that it is true.

In an extraordinary turn of events, Jewish farmers in Samaria went out with their own video cameras on Sunday and filmed Palestinians and one of their “human rights” cohorts cutting down Palestinian olive trees beside the Jewish community of Elon Moreh.

And why you may ask would Palestinians and “human rights” organizations cut down the trees? Aside from the obvious public relations value of blaming the vandalism on Jewish community members,  the Israeli Civil Authority has actually been paying Palestinians for trees “allegedly” cut down by Jewish community members with Israeli taxpayer money

By the way, the precise trees that were filmed being chopped down by Palestinians–were claimed on the same day by B’Tselim as having been destroyed by “settlers”.

When the Jewish community members showed the video, the “human rights” group changed its story yesterday and said that those were not the “right” olive trees after all. More than this, the Palestinians said that the tree butchery was merely Palestinian farmers “tending their trees.” 


So the next time you hear about those “evil settlers” chopping down Palestinian olive trees, remember that you cannot believe all that you hear.

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