Tree planting event in Kibbutz Nahal Oz on the Gaza Border.
(photo credit: KKL-JNF PHOTO ARCHIVE)
In the shadow of the ‘kite terror’ that has caused such serious damage to the farmland, forests and ecology of southern Israel, KKL-JNF has joined a Gaza periphery residents’ initiative entitled ‘they burn, we plant’, and will supply local communities with saplings for planting events during the coming week.
The continuing kite terrorism has so far caused around 250 fires in which 282 hectares of forest and woodland have been burned. Extensive areas of farmland belonging to Gaza border communities have also gone up in smoke, causing serious financial damage and great distress to farmers, who have watched all their labor come to nothing.
For two months now KKL-JNF staff in the organization’s Southern Region have pitched in to help with the vital task of minimizing the incendiary kites’ damage to the Gaza periphery’s residents, forests and fields. These KKL-JNF teams use the Beeri Forest
firewatchers’ tower, which was built with donations from KKL-JNF’s Friends in the Scandinavian countries, to identify and locate sites where blazes have broken out.
In the shadow of kite terrorism, the residents of the Gaza perimeter decided to do something that would symbolize life and hope for growth and prosperity. In a place where others burn and destroy, they set out to plant new trees throughout the local communities, under the banner ‘they burn, we plant’.
On Thursday, June 7th, 2018, the initial planting event took place at Kibbutz Or HaNer, which is situated in the area under the jurisdiction of Shaar HaNegev Regional Council. KKL-JNF’s Gilat Nursery
supplied local residents with fifty carob, fig, pomegranate, black mulberry and flame-tree (Delonix regia
) saplings. Soldiers from the northern brigade of the IDF’s Gaza division, Brigade Commander Colonel Avi Rosenfeld and KKL-JNF Board of Directors member Ofir Libstein, who lives nearby on Kibbutz Kfar Aza, were among those who took part in the Or HaNer planting.