what the Occupation is like. Here is a disgusting tale of soldiers shooting up a West Bank town at 1:45 in the morning with random firings, to show off to a girl, or because they're drunk.
And here, from the same American Jewish narrator, is a literary, you-are-there, beautifully sick-making description of a 5-hour trip with 1-1/2 Palestinian companions, from Jayyous to Nablus and back, which used to take 50 minutes. Excerpts:
military encampment on the roof, along with Israeli flags, shadows the top
of the hill, at the village of Sara. The house belongs to the family of a
friend of Mahmoud, and the upper floors were built by a friend in Nablus
expectation of getting married. Instead, two months later, it was occupied
by the Israeli army….
[In a taxi] It is
difficult to see out the front window, because an Israeli soldier
attempted to smash it, leaving a radiating crack like a spider web….
As we pass the occupied house that Mahmoud's friend's family lives in, a
soldier on the roof calls us into the courtyard. He lowers a can tied on a
string, directs me to put my passport in, and pulls it up for inspection.
It is difficult to see the soldier's face, as the midday suns beats down
from behind him.
Yahir lives on the ground floor of the building
with his wife, Hanna Ahmad Kaid, 52. The second story of their house, and
their roof, have been occupied for six months by 30 soldiers who are
shifted every two days. Saleh, Mahmoud's university friend who built the
upper floor in anticipation of being married, refuses to come back to the
house, and has gone to the United States, as has another brother. Three
brothers are renting an apartment in Nablus. Nearly every night, the
couple says, the soldiers fire on anything that moves, so as to inhibit
[At Jeet] They refuse to let us
through, saying it is forbidden, that we must go back to Nablus and go
through the dreaded Huwwara checkpoint instead. We protest that we were
let through that morning, and my white-skin Jewish privilege was invoked.
This draws the epithet "mother fucking asshole" from one of the soldiers.
Another says he doesn't care what Americans think of them. Gradually they
relent, but Sami is sent back to Nablus. "He's a troublemaker," says one
soldier. "He comes every day and makes trouble." Mahmoud protests that
that's impossible, as Sami has never even been to Nablus before in his
life. But there is no persuading the soldiers.