The grassroots Samaria Residents' Council has called on local residents to prepare for the olive harvest season by having their cameras ready to record Arab and leftist provocations that are bound to come.
"Last year, we caught Arabs and left wing activists red handed as they cut down olive trees,” said Council Director Sagi Keisler. “In the last few years, the olive harvest season has become the season of incitement.”
"A machine of false propaganda developed around the olive harvest in Samaria,” he explained. “Radical leftist groups flooded the media with false reports that Jews were damaging olive trees and hurting Arabs.”
"Lat year, we decided to put an end to the phenomoenon, which was meant to harm the settlement enterprise by making the residents look bad. We equipped the Council activists with high quality cameras with which provocations can be recorded even at a large distance. This year we will continue the activity, in order to prevent the enemies of the settlement enterprise from inciting against it.”
Council activists succeeded last year in documenting Arabs and leftists as they cut down olive trees near Elon Moreh.
"We call upon the settlers to document every suspicious activity by leftists and Arabs, and to relay it to the Council offices,” said Keisler. “We will hand over the materials to the relevant elements in the media and in the law enforcement system.”
The Jewish residents have taken to calling the olive harvest season “onat hamesit” – “the season of incitement,” a Hebrew play on words on the original term, “onat hamesik.”
"We will not allow a bunch of lawbreakers to place a dark cloud on the settlement enterprise and hurt the image of the communities and the settlers,” added Council Head Benny Katzover. “Last year, we succeeded in defeating the phenomenon and we hope that this year, too, we will be able to pass 'onat hamesit' without damage to the settlement enterprise.”
"It is important to note that despite dozens of complaints that were filed against residents, to this day, not one charge sheet has been filed against a settler for uprooting olive trees,” the activists said. “This is proof that 'onat hamesit' is a well-oiled machine designed to hurt the settlement enterprise with no factual basis.”