AL-BASSA – ACRE DISTRICT
33°4′41″N / 35°8′36″E
1948: Population 3,422; Houses 700
Occupation date: May 14, 1948
Occupying forces: Carmeli Brigade
Occupying operation: Operation Ben-Ami
Post 1948: Following the occupation of the village in 1948, the Carmeli Headquarters reported that al-Bassa had been “blown up completely.”4 Yet most of the village houses remained standing after the Arab–Israeli War and were only demolished during 1970–71.5 In 1949 Moshav Betzet was established on village land in order to accommodate new Romanian and Yugoslavian immigrants; Kibbutz Rosh HaNikra and Moshav Liman were founded by groups of demobilized soldiers on village land. In 1950 the Shlomi “development town” (one of many areas created by the state in the 1950s to accommodate Jewish immigrants from Arab countries) was established near the village land, later expanding within its boundaries. Several of the houses of Kibbutz Matzuva, established in 1940, were later built upon the former land of al-Bassa.
Today: In the northern portion of Shlomi is an expanse of land, densely covered in brambles, fig trees, and cacti, in which lies a crumbling Maqām (Muslim shrine), its domed prayer room still intact, set beneath two palm trees. Several of the original houses are occupied by Israelis, and piles of rubble from those that were demolished are littered about the site. The former village church is near the Maqām; one wall is crumbling and a tree protrudes through another.
Official Israeli name: None. Al-Bassa does not appear on contemporary maps of Israel.