Jews Return To “East” Jerusalem Neighborhood – This Time To Stay

by David Mark

Court battles, daring investors, and brave pioneers have all had a hand in what can only be described as one of the most amazing revivals in modern Jewish history.

The Yemenite Village was built in the early 1880s upon a barren hillside across from the City of David and stood there until consecutive Arab pogroms chased the Jews out. By 1948 the whole neighborhood was taken over by Arabs that had moved from outside of Jerusalem as well as Jordanian forces.  This village was renamed Silwan – a bastardization of the original village name Shiloach.

Redemption Arrives

Since 2004, Ateret Cohanim has led the return into this important Jewish neighborhood, that like so many others were destroyed by marauding Arab gangs.

Today, as one walks from the City of David into the Shiloach Village, they see a small but growing Jewish neighborhood that now boasts 22 families living in 6 buildings.

While it is true life is dangerous there (molotov cocktails, rocks, etc.) the idea that Jews who once made up the entire village are under pressure to give in and pull out, is essentially reverse racism.

Now with the Yemenite synagogue back in Jewish hands, Arab squatters are resorting to violence. Yet, there is one weapon that can change the tide – more Jews. The Jews that move to these areas of Jerusalem, strengthen the Jewish presence and by doing so scare the Arabs acting out.

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