On 29 June 2003, the Israeli Ministry of Finance amended the Hok HaHasderim, a bill passed in 1985 in order to combat existing hyperinflation and aid in the creation and development of an austerity program. The late June amendment enormously decreased single mothers’ welfare allowances. Single mothers across the nation, who were already struggling to make ends meet, were both hurt and angered by the amendment. On 2 July 2003, one such woman, a 43-year-old single mother named Vicky Knafo, marched two-hundred and fifty kilometers from her home in Mitzpe Ramon to Jerusalem.
The history of Israel-Palestine relations since 1987 can be marked by a series of Palestinian uprisings against Israeli occupation (for more information see the BBC’s timeline of the First Intifada and its causes- http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/events/israel_at_50/history/82302.stm). In 2002, the Israeli government began construction of a wall to separate Israel from the West Bank territories. The government justified the barrier as a necessary security measure to shield communities from terrorist threats.
The Druze are a religious and ethnic sect on the Eastern edge of the Mediterranean. They live in mountainous regions in modern Lebanon, Israel and Syria (the Golan Heights). During the Arab-Israeli war in 1967 nearly all of the 110,000 Druze in the Golan Heights fled, though around 13,000 remained near the foot of Mount Harmon. They generally farmed olives and fruit. That same land was strategically important to both Israel and Syria, and Israel occupied it after the 1967 war.