In 'Shockingly Cruel' Move, Israel to Auction Off Classrooms It Dismantled in West Bank

Israel is auctioning off classrooms it seized from the occupied West Bank last year, a move that one Palestinian advocate called “truly appalling.”

The Guardian reported Friday on the auction, expected to be held in the next two weeks.

“This is so shockingly cruel and brazenly defiant in the face of international law,” said James Zogby, founder of the Arab American Institute. “Profiting off of the theft of classrooms and denying Palestinian children a roof over their heads.”

The Israeli Civil Administration, the governmental body in charge of policy in the occupied territories, dismantled the schools in October. The classrooms were set to be used to educate 49 schoolchildren in the West Bank and were a donation from the European Union Representative to the Palestinian Territories. 

“The E.U. missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah call on the Israeli authorities to rebuild the school structures in the same place without delay,” the representative said in a statement at the time. 

Critics saw that call to action as relatively toothless and indicative of the mission’s broader empty morality, a point stressed by Electronic Intifada founder Ali Abunimah in February.

“Here’s how it works,” tweeted Abunimah. “@EUinIsrael and other #EuroHypocrites governments pay for the schools. Israel demolishes them. EU rewards Israel for its crimes. Repeat as nauseum.”