The Ram Pond: The Battle to Preserve Israel’s Vanishing Natural Beauty – Illegal Arab Building

by Avi Abelow

The Ram Pond in the Golan Heights is a natural gem. It is a natural sweet-water lake at the foot of Mount Hermon.  It was formed in Israel’s only volcano crater. Today, illegal Arab building encroaches on this gift of nature.

On the banks of the lake, Arabs are illegally building palatial villas and guesthouses.  No one is doing anything to stop it.

Regavim – Preserving Israel’s Lands

The ongoing saga of the Ram Pond is one small example of what Regavim does.   Regavim’s field staff identifies illegal construction and researches the land rights.  Then they document the illegal activity, and petition the relevant authorities.  Regavim turned to the Ma’aleh Hermon Municipality’s Planning and Construction Committee a year ago.  However, they ignored the inquiry.  The only time things changed is when the National Unit for Enforcement of Land Law in the North got involved.  The Committee informed Regavim that they had initiated a special project, named “Spring Flowers,” to enforce the law in the area.

Regavim monitored the site, as they do in all cases of illegal construction.  The findings were dire.  In practice, the structures are stand undisturbed, just like when Regavim first contacted the Planning Committee.  Worse than that, more new illegal structures are going up in the interim.


This led to the next stage in Regavim’s efforts. Regavim submitted a petition to the Nazareth District Court.  It is still pending. Unfortunately, the heavy machinery continues its work at the site unabated throughout the process.

This almost unimaginable neglect is what Regavim is battling all across the country, from the Negev to the Golan. In this case, the official State body empowered to put a stop to this madness is fully aware of the illegal Arab building at the Ram Pond.  But rather than taking action, they sit back and let this criminal destruction of Israel’s natural beauty continue unhindered.

Regavim stands at the front lines every day, using all legal means to compel the State to take action and exercise its sovereignty. Check out the Regavim website or Facebook page for more information.

Naomi Kahn, Director of Regavim’s International Division
Protecting Israel’s Resources, Restoring Israeli Sovereignty

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