They Burned My Racist Billboard!
The guy standing and pointing is Asher Roz, he wants to be mayor of a town called Omer, in the Negev. Omer is an extremely affluent suburb of Beer Sheva located next to a Bedouin village called Terabin. In the past years, Omer grew and incorporated the village into its boundaries. Four years ago, roughly half of the village was pushed out and sent to live in a newly-built (recognized) town, also called Terabin (named after the tribe of the inhabitants). The other half remains, and irks the population of Omer with their presence. Asher Roz is running on a platform of destroying the rest of the village and kicking out its inhabitants. The yellow letters on the billboard read “I have a real solution for completing the evacuation of Terabin!”
I arrived there with Ye’ala Raanan of the Regional Council of Unrecognized Villages (the organization I’m working with) and Anwar Terabin, the elected head of the village of Terabin, to discuss with him just what exactly this real solution involves.
Throughout the entire impromptu meeting, I was surprised how cool Anwar remained, he projected a persona of total diplomacy, and kept the discussions jovial and friendly, even. The banality of ethnic cleansing. When Ye’ala asked Anwar in front of Asher, “Is this not racist?” he replied with a grin, “I don’t really want to get into semantics.”