The Rabbis’ Letter – Return To Sender? By Rabbi Moshe Silver
As 2021 drew to a close, 237 American rabbis sent a letter to Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, urging a halt to demolitions in the Palestinian village of al-Walaja, now part of the Jerusalem municipality. Approximately 1,000 people in the village live under threat of demolition. As the new year dawns, the fate of these families lies in the hands of Lapid and his government. This is in part because Israel’s High Court, which was to rule on 26 December on the demolition of 38 homes, postponed the hearings. But a decision of the highest court is only as strong as the government’s will to carry it out. For the moment, with the hearings postponed, those particular homes will not be touched. But any of al-
Walaja’s other homes might be, and with little to no warning. Four other homes have been demolished in the past few months alone.