Wednesday, 15 June 2011
“If I was a Palestinian would I be able to buy or lease land in Israel?” - J. Bollan
I sent this to BOLLAN
The answer, Mr Bollan, is yes, and here’s the proof: These photos were taken by me in the Arab village of Kaukab Abu El-Hija in the Galilee. It has a double barrelled name and one of the names is Arabic for star Kaukab. Kaukab Abu El-Hija
Ask your Arab friends to look for it on a map. I’m sure they’ll be able to find out. Better still, go there yourself, visit it and speak to the owners. Incidentally, the olive oil industry in the Galilee is dominated by Arabs who are very prosperous.
In 1938, village of Kaukab was destroyed and its threshing floors burnt by British troops during a revenge mission. Today it has grown and populated by prosperous Arab-owned villas. Do you live in such a house, Mr. Bollan? I certainly don’t.
The village of Kaukab Abu el-Hija is located on the rolling hills of the Segev area of Lower Galilee, 425 metres above sea level. The village, with its population of some 2,500 Sunni Moslems, has a panoramic view westwards towards the Mediterranean Sea, south towards Nazareth, east to the Sea of Galilee and north to the mountains of Upper Galilee.
The idea of establishing a sculpture garden in Kaukab dedicated to the concept of peace and coexistence, was initiated after the signing of the Oslo agreements in 1993, implementing the ongoing peace process in the Middle East. It was taken at the initiative of the Kaukab local council together with Beit Hagefen, the Arab-Jewish Centre in Haifa, and with the help and backing of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Education and the Haifa Municipality.
The sculpture garden extends over two hill tops with other pieces scattered around the village and its entrance. At present there are some 30 works in situ with others planned. The sculptures have been donated by their Israeli (Arab and Jewish) and Palestinian artists.