Saturday, December 18 2010 Plowing on the lands of Eid Mor and in Sha’ab el-Butom

Our first stop today was at the lands of Eid Mor, east of Susiya. Upon arrival an officer informed us that “there is a closed military zone order on the whole place”. We ignored him and began clearing the field of stones, preparing it for plowing. Several minutes and five jeeps later, the promised order indeed arrived. It included a vast area, from which the settlements had been painstakingly omitted.  The drama was, however, nipped in the bud by rumors of an attack in Sha’ab el-Butom. We hurried to arrive, and discovered thankfully that it had been a false alarm. Nevertheless, already there, we decided to remain and to assist the residents in preparations for plowing. Settlers from Mitzpe Yair circled the area constantly, but the soldiers and border policemen present were mostly apathetic. They refused the request of one Palestinian to remain and protect him until he had finished plowing, and instead hurried to leave the area. The plowing continued for several hours and stretched over a wide area, but was finally interrupted by an officer of the Civil administration.