“Catch us the foxes, The little foxes That ruin the vineyards— For our vineyard is in blossom.” (Song of Songs 2:15)
More than 1,100 vines were vandalized overnight between Friday and Saturday in two vineyards in Shiloh Valley in the Binyamin Regional Council, Israel Police reported on Sunday morning.
Traces of five suspects were found in the direction of Qusra, a Palestinian village near Nablus.
Israeli security forces and the IDF are investigating the case.
This is not the first time massive damage was caused to the vineyards of the region. In July, ten dunams of vines were vandalized in one of the vineyards targeted over the weekend.
After the incident in July, a caravan for security personnel was posted in the area to prevent vandalism but was later destroyed by the Israeli Civil Administration.
Zviki Struck, the owner of one of the vineyards vandalized over the weekend, told Tazpit Press Service (TPS) that he had suffered hundreds of thousands of shekels worth of damage.
“ I arrived at my vineyard as usual at six in the morning to work, and I saw a huge quantity of vines that had been cut down,” Struck said,
“It takes three years for each grapevine to grow and produce its fruit,” he said.
Aaron Zof, who grows vines in the region said that for years the entire Shiloh Valley region has suffered from agricultural terrorism.
“The media has only recently began to talk about the plague of agricultural terrorism, after it hit the south and north of the country,” Zof told TPS.
Last week hundreds of grapevines were vandalized in a Palestinian vineyard north of Hebron, and a similar incident occurred the week before in Hebron. Both attacks were believed to have been hate crimes carried out by Jewish settlers from the region.