The pine tree isindigenous to Israel – it is not a Western implant – and has been there for millennia
MK Ayman Odeh repeats a popular lie when he writes in Haaretz:
The pine tree was the main symbol of the new [Jewish National Fund]; it grows quickly and doesn’t need much depth to strike roots. Like the British before it, the JNF chose the pine tree instead of expanding the natural Mediterranean woodland that grew in the Judean Hills. The pine looks nice, but it’s a foreign implant in the local environment and endangers it because it’s especially flammable in our dry, hot climate.
The Survey of Western Palestine, Special Papers on Topography, Archaeology, Manners and Customs, Etc · Volume 4, By Palestine Exploration Fund · 1881, quotes a 7th century observer of large pine forests in the center of the land of Israel:
From Underground Jerusalem: An Account of Some of the Principal Difficulties Encountered in Its Exploration and the Results Obtained. With a Narrative of an Expedition Through the Jordan Valley and a Visit to the Samaritans, by Sir Charles Warren, 1876: