Palestinian women harvest olive trees near the occupied West Bank village of Deir Samet near the town of Hebron. Hazem Bader/AFP/Getty Images
Across the West Bank, olive harvesting season is drawing to a close once again. But this year, the usually joyous occasion has become grimly purposeful because the Palestinian economy, according to some economists, is being held hostage to politics, and is on the verge of collapse.
In the West Bank village of Deir Ibzie, Amal Karajeh and her husband, Basem, comb through the leaves and branches of an olive tree in their front yard.
The plump green olives rain down on the ground, where they’re collected in plastic sheets and buckets. Both of the Karajehs have taken time off from their jobs to harvest the olives. She’s employed by the Palestinian Authority’s statistics bureau; he works for a local telecommunications company.
DECEMBER 5TH 2012
Palestinian Olive Harvest Turns Bitter As Economy Sputters