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Palestinian-American teen denied access to Israel’s airport

Israel/Palestine
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Photo of Dina Shehadeh at her family home in al-Bireh near Ramallah by Allison Deger

Dina Shehadeh, 17, was about to begin her senior year of high school in Ohio where she was born and raised. But two weeks ago, after spending the summer with her extended family in the West Bank, she was separated from her mother and detained inside of Ben Gurion airport near Tel Aviv. Israeli security then told Dina that she was not allowed to leave the country—at least not through the airport.

While detained on the night of August 13, 2014 when she was scheduled to fly on El Al flight 1,  Dina learned to her surprise that Israeli security no longer considered her an American citizen with American travel privileges. The Palestinian identification card her family filed for her the year before, a registry requirement for children of West Bank Palestinian ID holders, erases her rights as a U.S. citizen.

“We put aside the American passport for this matter and they are only Palestinian,” said the Israeli Ministry of Interior office at Ben Gurion Airport to Mondoweiss. As of her 16th birthday, Dina now needs a special permit from the army to enter the airport. “Otherwise he can leave through Gaza for Egypt, and Jordan from Allenby [a West Bank land crossing].”

Israel’s policy of limiting travel through Ben-Gurion for Palestinian-Americans has recently come under fire when last April Israel made a bid for a U.S. visa waiver program. To be eligible, the U.S. State Department said Israel needed to reduce the number of deportations and travel bans imposed on Palestinian-Americans. In April spokesperson Jen Psaki said at a press briefing Israel needed to ease up, “The Department of Homeland Security and State remain concerned with the unequal treatment that Palestinian-Americans and other Americans of Middle Eastern origin experience at Israel’s border and checkpoints, and reciprocity is the most basic condition.” However, no changes have been announced.

“When I was first detained they told me to sit on some chairs outside and all I heard them ask my mom was who is her dad, what is his name?” said Dina recounting how she was held in an airport employee office for five hours without her passport. Then Dina said the Israeli authorities yelled at her mother, Nedha Shehadeh and so she walked away to avoid the confrontation. “When my mom said this is the last time we’ll come back if this is how we are treated the lady told her I don’t care.” Airport security then said to Nedha she should board the flight to JFK in New York that the pair had booked, indicating that Dina would to join her on the plane before take off.

However Dina was not allowed to board and instead was kept in an employee room inside of Ben Gurion airport until the next day. Her mother was on the plane and flew to New York, unable to de-board by the time she realized that something had happened to her daughter.

Security officials asked Dina a few questions about her family tree, her father’s name, his father’s name, etc., and then she was left alone for hours. “It was an office where all of the people work there clock in and out,” she said. When her passport was finally returned to her, Dina was told she was allowed to leave the airport to return to the West Bank.

But Dina didn’t know how to get to the West Bank from Tel Aviv and found herself in the precarious position of being without a phone, in foreign country, in an airport that she’s legally not allowed to be in. And so she cried.

“I was just sitting there the whole time for like two hours by myself,” said Dina, explaining her father had planned to travel back to the U.S. via Jordan a few days later, but she didn’t know how to reach him. Also, airport security had taken all of her mothers checked luggage off of the plane and dropped them off with her, too big and too heavy to carry. She sat on the hallway floor outside of the room where she had been detained, “until this man that works there took me to a office and I used his phone to call my father,” she said.

In 2008 after spending two decades abroad Dina’s father had a comparable situation while flying into Ben Gurion airport in order to travel on to the West Bank. He too was detained. Airport authorities then put him on a flight to Jordan and told him he needed to renew his Palestinian ID and could no longer use the Israeli airport. But before 2000, Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza had a legal right to access the Tel Aviv airport and technically they still do today. However during the second Intifada the army instituted a temporary security provision requiring Palestinians to obtain an “airport permit,” which Dina and her family were not aware of. And even though the Intifada has long since ended, the security requirements for Palestinians using Ben Gurion have only increased.

Still when Dina flew into Ben Gurion at the beginning of the summer, she breezed through passport control without hassle.

“They have two different kinds of U.S. citizens.” Said Abdulsalam Shehadeh, Dina’s father pointing to his daughter’s green Palestinian ID card, continuing, “even though we didn’t want these, but they gave them to us.”

There is no process in place for Dina to renounce or rid herself of her Palestinian ID card and become American in the eyes of Israel again. Her ID card is more of a hindrance than a benefit. It does not grant her additional rights. It does not make her a citizen, as Palestine is not an independent country. Rather by having the Palestinian ID, Dina is troubled by no longer being allowed to visit Jerusalem or the beaches of Tel Aviv—like other Americans. At a checkpoint, Dina has to stand in the line for Palestinians not foreigners, which is often longer, and she can only drive a car with Green license plates, a special marker for West Bank Palestinians.

Being viewed by Israel as a Palestinian also means Dina is subject to harsh military codes. If she were to get a minor traffic violation such as speeding, she would be prosecuted under military law and could face three-months in jail. By contrast any other American citizen would be issued a ticket and a nominal fine.

Within two days of Dina’s detention at Ben Gurion airport Abdulsalam had already contacted his congressional representative, the American Embassy in Tel Aviv and the Israeli Civil Administration in the West Bank. The latter issued Dina a special “airport permit” that puts in writing that she is not a security threat, and allowed her to board a flight from Ben Gurion.

“They should have told her when she was coming to their country ‘hey we don’t want you go back’ they do that to a lot of people,” he said, continuing, “Why would you let her in, when she’s leaving with her mother, a minor underage, and separate her from her mother. This is the whole issue.”

Allison Deger
About Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Mondoweiss.net. Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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55 Responses

  1. just
    just
    August 25, 2014, 9:19 am

    And what does the American embassy or ambassador do? Nothing.

    No visa waiver program for the Israelis. NONE, NEVER.

  2. Kay24
    Kay24
    August 25, 2014, 9:27 am

    It is unfortunate that once again Israeli officials are acting with arrogance towards us. The State department warned all US citizens about the harassment by the Israeli officials at the airport, and the consistent discrimination of Arab Americans at that horrible airport, yet we have Israel firsters like Barbara Boxer pushing to give Israelis easy entry into our country. It just does not make sense. But then any kind of privilege bestowed on one of our most brutal “allies”, is part of our entire political system, and we should get used to it by now, hard though it is.

    “In order for the US to permit citizens of a foreign country to enter the US without a visa, that country must agree to certain conditions. Chief among them is reciprocity: that country must allow Americans to enter without a visa as well. There are 37 countries which have been permitted entrance into America’s “visa waiver” program, and all of them – all 37 – reciprocate by allowing American citizens to enter their country without a visa.

    The American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (Aipac) is now pushing legislation that would allow Israel to enter this program, so that Israelis can enter the US without a visa. But as JTA’s Ron Kampeas reports, there is one serious impediment: Israel has a practice of routinely refusing to allow Americans of Arab ethnicity or Muslim backgrounds to enter their country or the occupied territories it controls; it also bars those who are critical of Israeli actions or supportive of Palestinian rights. Israel refuses to relinquish this discriminatory practice of exclusion toward Americans, even as it seeks to enter the US’s visa-free program for the benefit of Israeli citizens.”
    Glen Greenwald article (read update below article)
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/apr/13/barbara-boxer-aipac-israel-discrimination

  3. Mary T
    Mary T
    August 25, 2014, 9:43 am

    I believe if the mass of Americans understood the arrogance and contempt with which American citizens are treated by Israel, they would not support Israel to the extent they do, let alone approve of their tax dollars supporting Israeli actions against Palestinians.

    • Kay24
      Kay24
      August 25, 2014, 9:55 am

      The problem is the media never covers any of these disgusting incidents.
      Israel is always portrayed as the victims, boo hoo.

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      August 25, 2014, 10:01 am

      But who’s going to tell the mass of Americans? To my knowledge the mainstream media news has never mentioned the on-going battle in congress to make a sole exemption to visa-waiver reciprocity in behalf Israel. And what congress person is telling his or her constituency about this bill the Boxer ilk is trying to push through into law?

      So Palestinian Americans don’t get to have dual citizenship recognized by Israel like Jewish Americans are so recognized?

      • Gene Shae
        Gene Shae
        August 25, 2014, 4:56 pm

        Sorry but it is not interesting to most people. That is why the news will not carry this item.

      • just
        just
        August 25, 2014, 5:54 pm

        We are going to make it “very interesting to most people”.

        Americans will not like that their passport is not respected by Israel. Racial profiling is a huge problem right now in the US. Israel will lose this one.

      • Gene Shae
        Gene Shae
        August 26, 2014, 2:33 pm

        @Just,
        Americans will understand the nuance here and then lose all interest.
        As fare as your claim ‘We are going to make it “very interesting to most people”’. I wonder how? Can you come up with another example when this happened?

      • talknic
        talknic
        August 25, 2014, 6:55 pm

        @ Gene Shae The fact is pal, the news IS carrying it

        https://www.google.com.au/search?q=Dina%20Shehadeh%20Israel

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      August 25, 2014, 1:02 pm

      The only thing israelis want in terms of america is their money. So many israelis, from Netanyahu down, treat the US with contempt, like their bitch. There’s no love there, its a very sick relationship and americans, particularly american christians since they send a lot of money this way, are reviled. Quit sending your money to israel. America needs to take care of americans first. There are videos all over youtube showing exactly how some israelis feel about america and the american president and its disgusting considering the handout the state of israel has been getting for a very long time.

  4. American
    American
    August 25, 2014, 9:44 am

    ” that Israeli security no longer considered her an American citizen with American travel privileges”

    Unsurprising. Israel thinks it can make up laws for everyone, zionism has made up its own language, its own definitions, its own morality, its own history, its own interpretation of international law, ——its an alien cult that will never fit in with the majority world.
    It needs to be de-commissioned as a zionist nation so maybe One State, even it takes a while to end Jewish rule, is the way to go.

  5. pineywoodslim
    pineywoodslim
    August 25, 2014, 11:48 am

    No need to add to the thoughtful comments, just saying that the new site looks great.

  6. just
    just
    August 25, 2014, 12:05 pm

    “”Welcome to Sarajevo: one director’s journey from Gaza to the film festival
    When Ashraf Mashharawi, a documentarian from Gaza, learned he was a joint winner of the Katrin Cartlidge award, he was determined to travel to the Sarajevo film festival to collect it in person. Now, renewed bombing means he doesn’t know when he will see his family again. Simon McBurney reports on a moving meeting with the film-maker

    “He was holding his twins,” says Ashraf Mashharawi, leaning forward. “All his family around him. They had been able to shelter in their basement. But it was a direct hit and their house collapsed. It took two days to reach them. When we did, I helped to move the rubble from above them. He was sitting in the corner, holding his girls, one under each arm. They were all only slightly injured, so they must have died slowly.”

    Mashharawi looks at me again, with concern. “Excuse me for such harshness,” he says. “But this is our everyday life”.


    The award is a $10,000 (£6,027) bursary from the Katrin Cartlidge Foundation, set up after the actor died suddenly and unexpectedly in 2002. She was my best friend. I know she would have supported the choice of winner, and she would have been delighted that the audience rose as one to applaud Mashharawi as he took to the stage and accepted the award, identifying himself as “the voice of so many, the voice of those who can no longer speak”.

    After deafening applause, he turned to me, as a trustee of the foundation, to read Shehadeh’s letter. Here is a part of it.

    Greetings from here. Here in Gaza, we welcome you from our vast and abundant sea; a sea of stories, tales, migrations, travels. We are grateful for your dedication and solidarity and to the flow of human conscience, and to an inevitable justice that is surely coming … We welcome you from our vineyards, where the sun sings lullabies of its beginnings, full of colour, casting bronze shimmers as it sets over our eternal, passionate sea. We welcome you from our ancient and ever-renewing olive trees. We welcome you from the Mentar Hills in the south all the way to the highest point, in our Galilee. Our library, our consciousness, our heritage, and our memory is embroidered in all colours … in light, joy and good omens.

    They are shelling our homes, every house a Hiroshima; souls leave us, dreams depart and so do memories. In a moment we become racing numbers on a television screen; a moment before was a moment of life. So I tell the thickheaded fools that know nothing of life this: we are coming, we are ever-present.

    Because it is Gaza’s patience that has painted the light of hope, the stories of young women and night lanterns. It will not be much longer for this night, they will not shatter its morning, they will not extinguish its heart. [It is] Gaza the voice that has defeated cannons and battered their tyranny with an all-encompassing hope. We love you, people of the Balkans; our partners in pain and pride. Sarajevo and Gaza are witnesses to the injustice of history, relentless in the conscience of history.

    Mashharawi sits in the sunny square the next day. His friend is, he says, a very poetic man. He gestures around. “That is all we want. To share with others what it is like here. People constantly think everyone wants to get out of Gaza, leave it forever. But we shall never leave. It is a beautiful place.””

    http://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/aug/25/ashraf-mashharawi-sarajevo-film-festival-gaza-simon-mcburney?commentpage=1

    AND

    @ the same festival:

    “Loach has called for a boycott of all cultural and sporting events supported by the Israeli state, and condemned the support offered to Israel by the US and UK. ”

    http://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/aug/25/ken-loach-calls-for-cultural-boycott-of-israel?commentpage=1

  7. pjdude
    pjdude
    August 25, 2014, 12:56 pm

    so Israel has taken it upon its self to tell us who is a citizen of our country. this terrorist state needs to go bye bye sooner rather than later

  8. justicewillprevail
    justicewillprevail
    August 25, 2014, 2:11 pm

    How can anyone say that Israel doesn’t operate an apartheid system? Here is a demonstration of how it works. Classification by a rigid bureaucratic system of people not according to their nationality, but according to their family origins, a system predicated on ethnicity and race. And once that is established, treating them differently, with one group disadvantaged, presumed to be criminals and having no rights, subject to arbitrary arrest and imprisonment, restriction of liberty and freedom of movement. All because they have the wrong parents. Disgusting, and completely antithetical to the supposed values and principles of the US, which allows its citizens to be treated like black people in the South fifty years ago. A complete disgrace to the human race, which is the only race. Neanderthals.

  9. amigo
    amigo
    August 25, 2014, 2:43 pm

    ” that Israeli security no longer considered her an American citizen with American travel privileges”

    Well that,s it then.

    Israeli security also says that a Jewish dual citizenship holder should be allowed to travel “Without hindrance” .

    From anywhere to Israel and from Israel to anywhere.

    The rest are just flotsam and jetsam

  10. Mikhael
    Mikhael
    August 25, 2014, 2:44 pm

    Her family requested that she get a Palestinian identity card with the PA, thus making her a citizen of the Palestinian Authority. Citizens of the Palestinian Authority must have special permission to travel into Israel and they may leave Israel via Ben Gurion Airport, but they must get the necessary travel permits and exit visas. Those are the rules. It doesn’t matter that she also has US citizenship, and it shouldn’t. Likewise, I am a dual US-Israeli citizen, and as an Israeli citizen, I am required to get an exit visa before I leave Israel. It doesn’t matter that I also have a US passport. If for any reason Israel doesn’t grant me my exit visa (for example, shirking reserve duty or not paying taxes) I have no right to complain to the US embassy that my rights as an Israeli citizen to leave Israel are being violated. And I should not have that right. She is subject to the same restrictions that Israel places on any citizen of the PA (and it is Israel’s right to put travel restriction on any PA citizen that it wishes, because they are foreign citizens of an entity that is in many respects in a de facto state of belligerency with Israel, what do they expect?) and her parents put her in that position. Tough.

    • annie
      annie
      August 25, 2014, 5:57 pm

      She is subject to the same restrictions that Israel places on any citizen of the PA (and it is Israel’s right to put travel restriction on any PA citizen that it wishes, because they are foreign citizens of an entity that is in many respects in a de facto state of belligerency with Israel, what do they expect?)

      israel shouldn’t have the right to decide whether palestine has their own airport.

      israel shouldn’t have the right to decide who gets to go in and out of palestine.

      israel shouldn’t have the right to decide what guests palestinians can invite into their country.

      israel shouldn’t have the right to enforce a permanent occupation on 1/2 the people it controls.

      israel shouldn’t have the right to place restrictions on palestinians, or citizen of the PA as you call it, any different than any other person the is israeli government rules over. and after that month long pogrom in the West Bank last month, don’t pretend for one minute the PA has the final say in the west bank.

      your little apartheid state is not fooling anyone.

      • just
        just
        August 25, 2014, 6:02 pm

        Yeah! What Annie said.

      • chocopie
        chocopie
        August 25, 2014, 9:41 pm

        And Israel definitely doesn’t have the right to separate a mother from her minor child and send the mother out of the country, forcing her to leave her child behind. I can only imagine the horror the mother felt as she flew out of there, leaving her daughter alone and defenseless and in the custody of those Zionists who are well known for their mistreatment of Palestinian children. What a nightmare.

      • ckg
        ckg
        August 25, 2014, 11:03 pm

        Annie, your comment is epic. I have nothing to add.

    • pjdude
      pjdude
      August 25, 2014, 7:15 pm

      they requested it because they had no choice. under Israels illegal ocupation being the child of west bank palestinian requires one to have a palestinian id card. so you comparing the consequences of a choice to Israel punishing her for something they forced on her doesn’t compare. and Israel has no right to put any travel retrictions on the palestinians. the palestinians should have the right to be able to leave their country and come back. so as usual of zionists your lying and making false statements.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 27, 2014, 6:06 pm

        pjude
        August 25, 2014, 7:15 pm

        they requested it because they had no choice. under Israels illegal ocupation being the child of west bank palestinian requires one to have a palestinian id card.

        No, of course they had a choice. She is American-born and could have solely used her US travel documents and never asked for Palestinian residency; just as American Jews are not forced to make aliyah when they visit Israel, but only do it if they so please. Her parents wanted her to be regarded as Palestinian and have the benefits of Palestinian residency, congratulations, now she is regarded as Palestinian under the laws of the PA and is treated as such by Israel.

    • Light
      Light
      August 25, 2014, 7:50 pm

      That’s right Mikhael. There are rules. One set for Israeli Jews and another for Palestinians. Separate and not equal, apartheid.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 27, 2014, 10:43 pm

        Light August 25, 2014, 7:50 pm

        One set for Israeli Jews and another for Palestinians. Separate and not equal, apartheid

        Nooo…there is one set of rules for Israeli >citizens (who may be Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, secular, atheist, agnostic, white, black, brown, gay, straight, etc.) and there is another set of rules for non-Israeli citizens, just as every country has different exit and entry requirements for alien non-citizens depending on where they are from.

        The USA has different exit and entry requirements for North Koreans than it does for South Koreans, it does practice apartheid against North Koreans.

      • annie
        annie
        August 27, 2014, 10:51 pm

        “Nooo…there is one set of rules for Israeli >citizens (who may be Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, secular, atheist, agnostic, white, black, brown, gay, straight, etc.) and there is another set of rules for non-Israeli citizens – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2014/08/palestinian-american-israels.html/comment-page-1#comment-706039

        hmm, not quite. there’s one set of rules for israeli citizens and then a whole bunch of privileges for jewish israelis not afforded to any other citizens.

        and please excuse the link to the comment above. it’s too much effort on my part to erase it every time i copy something.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 28, 2014, 12:27 am

        Annie Robbins August 27, 2014, 10:51 pm
        a whole bunch of privileges for jewish israelis not afforded to any other citizens

        Nope, this is just patently false. You constantly assert this falsehood, but under Israeli law, all citizens of Israel have exactly the same rights, regardless of religion, race, nationality, sexual orientation, or ancestral background. As an Israeli Jew, I do not have more rights than the Israeli-Arab policeman (and of course, I am used to the Mondofools asserting that “Israeli-Arab” includes Mizrahi Jews–let me be clear that it does not–it never does–and I am referring to what the term actually means– non-Jewish Israeli citizens who come from an Arabic-speaking background) who summonsed me a few months ago for jaywalking (and who was uninterested in my explanation that this is common behavior in NYC, where I live much of the year), and when I protested too much and called him an unflattering name, threatened to arrest me for disorderly conduct. The Arab-Christian judge who sentenced former President Moshe Katzav some years back did not have less rights than the Jewish president he sentenced. It might be true that some non-Jewish citizens of Israel do not share the same duties as Jewish citizens, e.g., mandatory conscription, but they have the same rights under the law.

    • talknic
      talknic
      August 25, 2014, 8:26 pm

      @ Mikhael “Her family requested that she get a Palestinian identity card with the PA, thus making her a citizen of the Palestinian Authority.”

      ONLY the US can deny here US citizenship.

      Citizens of the Palestinian Authority must have special permission to travel into Israel “

      She was already in Israel, already in the airport you stupid person

      “they may leave Israel via Ben Gurion Airport, but they must get the necessary travel permits and exit visas”

      Her mother was allowed. (sans her luggage) This stinks of f*cked Israeli officials making life as hard as they possibly can

      ” If for any reason Israel doesn’t grant me my exit visa”

      Something almost worth praying for

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 27, 2014, 6:25 pm

        talknic August 25, 2014, 8:26 pm

        @ Mikhael “Her family requested that she get a Palestinian identity card with the PA, thus making her a citizen of the Palestinian Authority.”

        ONLY the US can deny here US citizenship.

        Israel doesn’t “deny” her US citizenship, it’s just absolutely irrelevant. She’s a PA system and there are rules PA citizens must comply with pertaining to visiting or transiting through Israel. Likewise, I have US citizenship in addition to Israeli citizenship, and Israel doesn’t deny my US citizenship, it just has no bearing on my duties to comply with Israeli law as an Israeli citizen (do my reserve duty if called up, pay my taxes, pay my child support to my ex-wife for my daughters). Having a US passport doesn’t supersede Israeli law in Israel, whether its Israeli law pertaining to citizens of Israel like me, or Israeli law pertaining to foreigners, such as citizens of the PA and their requirements to comply with regulations pertaining to PA citizens in Israel.

        Mikhael: Citizens of the Palestinian Authority must have special permission to travel into Israel “

        talknic: She was already in Israel, already in the airport you stupid person

        And that means obviously she entered Israel illegally, apparently by showing her US ID (but not her PA identification cards) at the checkpoints between Israel and PA territory, and the fact of her Palestinian citizenship and residency was not discovered until she was in Ben Gurion. Her parents should make sure she travels out via Amman and complies with Israeli law. next time or take care that they have the necessary permits for her to transit through Israel next time, and not try to sneak her through on the basis of her US passport alone.

        Her mother was allowed. (sans her luggage) This stinks of f*cked Israeli officials making life as hard as they possibly can

        You;re right, they made a mistake and they shouldn’t have allowed the mother to board either, although it’s possible that the parents applied for PA ID card for the child and not the adults.

        If for any reason Israel doesn’t grant me my exit visa

        It’s happened before. I didn’t go whining to the US State Departnment that I was an American citizen being abused in a foreign country but I complied with the rules in Israel that pertained to me as an Israeli.

        Something almost worth praying for
        Reply

    • The Hasbara Buster
      The Hasbara Buster
      August 25, 2014, 8:28 pm

      @Mikhael

      False analogy. You’re a citizen of Israel and you have duties toward that state. If you dodge the draft or evade taxes you’re breaking the law and can be denied an exit visa because of those offenses.

      Dina Shehadeh, on the other hand, is not an Israeli citizen, does not live in Israel or the West Bank and hasn’t committed any punishable offense. You retort that Israel has the legal right to stop her from boarding a plane all the same. That is true, but it’s not the issue. The issue is whether such right is being applied arbitrarily and whether racism plays a role in applying it. All indications suggest it does.

      I don’t recall Israelis adopting such a legalistic approach when an Israeli tennis player was denied entry into Dubai a few years back. On the contrary, they went ballistic — even when the United Arab Emirates had the legal right to deny her the visa.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 27, 2014, 6:36 pm

        The Hasbara Buster August 25, 2014, 8:28 pm
        You retort that Israel has the legal right to stop her from boarding a plane all the same. That is true, but it’s not the issue. The issue is whether such right is being applied arbitrarily and whether racism plays a role in applying it. All indications suggest it does.

        @Enlightenment Buster

        It may or may not be being applied arbitrarily, it may be due to racism, or it may be due to petty bureaucracy. Petty bureaucrats like being petty bureaucrats and exercising petty bureaucratic powers the world over. That’s what they get paid to do. But there’s no evidence that this is a deliberately racist Israeli policy designed to humiliate and inconvenience poor young innocents kids.

        I don’t recall Israelis adopting such a legalistic approach when an Israeli tennis player was denied entry into Dubai a few years back. On the contrary, they went ballistic — even when the United Arab Emirates had the legal right to deny her the visa.

        I agree , the UAE had the right to ban Shahar Peer, just as Kuwait, Lebanon or Saudi Arabia or Malaysia (the latter is a country I am actually interested in visiting but have no right to go to as an Israeli, of course I can probably travel in on my US passport and not inform them I am an Israeli, but if they know I am also Israeli I can be banned) have the right to ban me or my daughters, even though we may fly in on to those countries on our US passports. Israel went ballistic, like you guys are going ballistic now.

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      August 26, 2014, 1:04 am

      Whatever you say boss. What if she were your daughter?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        August 26, 2014, 10:42 am

        I don’t get it, I really don’t.
        I realize, believe me, I fully realize, that Zionism has to troll for sociopaths, the emotionally troubled, even outright psychopaths, if they are to fill the ranks. And obviously, the troll comments are meant to appeal to those people, and that is where Zionism will find its recruits.
        But why they are convinced those people will be reading Mondoweiss, I’ll never know.

      • Philemon
        Philemon
        August 26, 2014, 8:28 pm

        “But why they are convinced those people will be reading Mondoweiss, I’ll never know.”

        People who are psychopathic don’t really understand how non-psychopaths think. They seriously think they are better than non-psychopaths because they see empathy as an obvious weakness.

        Of course, there are some with Narcissistic Personality Disorder who like to feel as though they are more special than everyone else (which can be practically anything from prettier to more devout, and including more physically ill, or more intelligent, anything, anything that they think will give them a leg up on “the competition”) and they like to get feedback to prove it.

        So, don’t discount other personality disorders!

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        August 27, 2014, 6:07 pm

        “So, don’t discount other personality disorders!”

        Why, are they fair-traded or something? You want personality disorders, I can get them for you wholesale! (And then I sell ’em Gene Shae’s comment archive, and they go away satisfied.)

      • Gene Shae
        Gene Shae
        August 26, 2014, 8:44 pm

        @Mooser, one day you will,learn about responsibility and hard work. Until then, feel free to cast dispersing and snark as long as the day

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        August 27, 2014, 5:56 pm

        “Until then, feel free to cast dispersing and snark as long as the day”

        I’m casting dispersing and snark as long as the day? Who knew? Did you mean ‘casting aspersions’, you know, like what Cleopatra died of?

        “@Mooser, one day you will,learn about responsibility and hard work.”

        W-w-w-ork? Like man, don’t say words like that. Besides, I’m allergic.

      • Philemon
        Philemon
        August 27, 2014, 8:23 pm

        “…And then I sell ‘em Gene Shae’s comment archive, and they go away satisfied.”

        Bwaha! And along comes Gene, as if on cue!

        “…feel free to cast dispersing and snark as long as the day.”

        Please do feel free, Mooser, to do whatever Gene said up there.

        P.S. Mooser, please do not give Gene free ESL lessons. Not only does he obviously not deserve them, but whatever he says would be much less entertaining.

    • bryan
      bryan
      August 26, 2014, 4:15 am

      Mikhael When will you people understand that your uncompromising propagandism alienates civilised Westerners. By all means defend Israel if its actions are morally defensible – but please show some intelligence. This is simply an incident of petty racism plus indifference to the anxieties of a vulnerable adolescent who visited your fine country. You could simply have kept silent, or you could have explained that this was just an example of the bureaucratic SNAFUs that occur in illiberal and less than democatic states the world over. But instead you wade in with your dodgy and discreditable apologetics. She was just an American citizen on holiday who was treated shamefully but you try to portray her as an enemy of the state.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        August 27, 2014, 6:01 pm

        bryan August 26, 2014, 4:15 am

        By all means defend Israel if its actions are morally defensible – but please show some intelligence. This is simply an incident of petty racism plus indifference to the anxieties of a vulnerable adolescent who visited your fine country. You could simply have kept silent, or you could have explained that this was just an example of the bureaucratic SNAFUs that occur in illiberal and less than democatic states the world over. But instead you wade in with your dodgy and discreditable apologetics. She was just an American citizen on holiday who was treated shamefully but you try to portray her as an enemy of the state.

        I never said she was anything but a harmless adolescent, and she could have existed and entered the country freely on her US Passport alone if she wasn’t also a citizen of the PA. There are rules that apply to PA citizens transiting through Israeli territory. It’s not an issue of racism, because if she was a dual citizen of the USA and Jordan or Egypt (Arab countries that have peace treaties with Israel) and not the USA and the PA, she’d have had no problem. If I, as a dual citizen of the US and Israel, tried to fly through the Beirut Airport, I would at the very least be detained if my Israeli citizenship became known to the officials there. My US citizenship would be irrelevant. The post makes it seem as if she should get special consideration as a US citizen. If I go to visit Israel as a dual citizen and my ex-wife says I owe child support, I can be detained in Israel until I prove I’m innocent or pay up. I have no recourse to appeal to the US Embassy and say I’m an American and the rules don’t apply to me. As for adolescent anxiety, since when do immigration laws take that into account in any country? The adolescent Central Americans illegally crossing into the US are very anxious, I’m sure, but rules are rules.

  11. DICKERSON3870
    DICKERSON3870
    August 25, 2014, 9:07 pm

    RE: Rather by having the Palestinian ID, Dina is troubled by no longer being allowed to visit Jerusalem or the beaches of Tel Aviv—like other Americans. At a checkpoint, Dina has to stand in the line for Palestinians not foreigners, which is often longer, and she can only drive a car with Green license plates, a special marker for West Bank Palestinians.” ~ Weiss

    MY COMMENT: It appears that Israel is instituting a policy of Palestinianfrei (“free of Palestinians”) and/or Palestinianrein(“clean of Palestinians”), perhaps as their “tit(s)”* for the Nazi “tat(s)” of Judenfrei (“free of Jews”) and/or Judenrein (“clean of Jews”).
    Judenfrei @ Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judenfrei
    * “tit for tat” – http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/tit-for-tat.html

    P.S. FROM The Pianist (2002):

    Wladyslaw Szpilman: “It’s an official decree, no Jews allowed in the parks.”
    Dorota: “What, are you joking?”
    Wladyslaw Szpilman:: “No, I’m not. I would suggest we sit down on a bench, but that’s also an official decree, no Jews allowed on benches.”
    Dorota: “This is absurd.”
    Wladyslaw Szpilman: “So, we should just stand here and talk, I don’t think we’re not allowed to do that.”

    SOURCE – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0253474/quotes?item=qt0441451

  12. Accentitude
    Accentitude
    August 26, 2014, 1:12 am

    I don’t agree with what Israel did at all. However, she has a Palestinian West Bank I.D. (the green I.D. card mentioned in the article). If you have this I.D. you are required to travel via the Jordan border crossing. That’s just the way it is. Every Palestinian knows this. It is discrimination but what can we do? If she has a Palestinian I.D. and a U.S. Passport, the Palestinian I.D. take priority according to the Israelis. In their eyes, you’re a Palestinian, not an American. This isn’t anything new. If she was traveling only as an American, in other words if she didn’t have a Palestinian I.D., then she’s allowed to travel through Ben Gurion Airport.

    • annie
      annie
      August 26, 2014, 3:28 am

      That’s just the way it is. Every Palestinian knows this. It is discrimination but what can we do?

      end the occupation. imagine this. you invade your neighbors house and make new rules. they are no longer allowed to use their doors. all entries and exits to and from their house are thru your control. they can go to the shopping center but not on the road in front of their house. you’ve built passageways for them that takes 10x’s as long. you (and everybody in your family) can use their house tho, and use their doors. but they can’t. you say “That’s just the way it is. Every one in their family knows this. It is discrimination but what can we do?”

      you can stop controlling their house. you an not bomb their airports and ports. you can release them from jail. you can get your nose out of their business. then they wouldn’t need your airport, they could use their own doors to go to the store and back. and it’s really none of your business who they invite for dinner.

      If she was traveling only as an American, in other words if she didn’t have a Palestinian I.D., then she’s allowed to travel through Ben Gurion Airport.

      we get it. israel doesn’t want more people having palestinian citizenship. you want them to leave, and leave for good giving up their identity til there are none left. we understand what kind of sadistic game is being played here.

      • Accentitude
        Accentitude
        August 26, 2014, 4:37 am

        we get it. israel doesn’t want more people having palestinian citizenship. you want them to leave, and leave for good giving up their idtentiy til there are none left.

        I don’t want anyone to leave. I’m among the so-called “demographic threat” here in Palestine. I fulfilled my right of return despite Israel’s objections and yet I’m no more a citizen today then I was yesterday. I agree with you that the occupation needs to end but it isn’t going to end until the international community takes serious measures to hold Israel fully accountable for all of its actions. Its certainly not going to happen under America’s watchful eye. They are the financiers of this occupation, mind you. “Western Democracy….shared interests…security first…blah blah blah…” Isn’t that what they all say? They’ll throw their citizens under the bus to appease the Israeli state.

        What I’m saying is that we here in Palestine are familiar with Israel’s policies. We live it everyday. Everyone in Palestine knows that people who hold West Bank IDs cannot travel through Ben Gurion unless they get tasreeh (special permission…rarely granted. You’re more likely to get hit by a laser guided missile fired from a unicorn).

        Her family should have known that they can’t just walk into Ben Gurion and expect to fly out from there especially if, as her father says, they have West Bank IDs. Whether they asked for them or not, they got them. We can talk all day and night about how this is a policy of discrimination and how the occupation needs to end and how they should be allowed to us the airport and I agree with all of those sentiments. But it isn’t happening, is it? We are no less occupied today than were were 66 years ago despite Oslo and despite Camp David and despite all those awkward hugs and kisses on the White House lawn. We in Palestine have to deal with the reality we live in right now and right now we are not allowed to go through Ben Gurion.

      • Gene Shae
        Gene Shae
        August 26, 2014, 8:46 pm

        @accentitude, I am confused. Do you live in Israel? If so, why do you use an alternate name for your country?

      • Philemon
        Philemon
        August 26, 2014, 9:05 pm

        Well, everyone knows you have to ride in the back of the bus if you are black…

        Yeah, those are the rules. “Everyone” knows them, except for some stupid U.S. Americans.

        Maybe they thought that their daughter being a U.S. citizen would have made a difference. And maybe it will, eventually.

        And maybe it could call attention to an inherently unfair and abusive system, which you do not want to continue. This situation is entirely foreign to how U.S. Americans think any mother and daughter should be treated, and if it is one of their own citizens, they can get outraged about it.

      • Mary T
        Mary T
        August 26, 2014, 7:38 am

        “Sadistic” is the appropriate word. The way the entire episode was handled by the Israelis screams “sadism” – held for 5 hours without her passport (she was trying to *leave* the country for crying out loud); telling her mother to board and Dina would join her; kept for hours at the airport; removing her mother’s checked luggage from the plane and dumping it on Dina. A 17 year old girl! Shameful.

  13. Mikhael
    Mikhael
    August 26, 2014, 6:31 am

    Marnie August 26, 2014, 1:04 am Whatever you say boss. What if she were your daughter?

    I’d make sure that my daughters had the right to travel through a foreign country that they are not citizens of before purchasing the tickets. I wouldn’t let my Israeli-born daughters, who have dual US-Israeli citizenship through me, travel through Kuwait or Saudi Arabia, even on their American passports, because those countries ban Israeli citizens (or even someone with Israeli visas in their passports) from their territory except under special circumstances. My children’s place of birth is clearly listed as Israel, even under their US passports, so I think the Kuwaitis would catch on. I wouldn’t expect that the US passport is some magic device that erases their Israeliness. They must comply with the rules of the country they are transiting through.

    • Mary T
      Mary T
      August 26, 2014, 3:08 pm

      Dina was born in the U.S. But beyond that, I’d like to see your response to what pjdude said above: the Palestinian ID card is an Israeli requirement. Is this correct? If so, seems like Israel has a pretty good Catch 22 thing going.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      August 27, 2014, 6:10 pm

      “I’d make sure that my daughters had the right to travel through a foreign country that they are not citizens of before

      Mikheal will never leave his little girls behind!

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      August 28, 2014, 9:26 am

      I just read this and I love your comparison of Israel to Kuwait or Saudi Arabia, which was not brought up in this article and is just BS. You’re refusal to acknowledge the obvious lack of transparency in the state of israel and it’s treatment of americans of palestinian ancestry or even people with a name that doesn’t sound or is jewish, is a joke. You’ll run this into the ground until someone agrees with your impressive pile of doggy doo. Where’s JonS and Yonah when you need ’em.

  14. Talkback
    Talkback
    August 26, 2014, 8:12 am

    “We put aside the American passport for this matter and they are only Jews” said the German Ministry of Interior office at Berlin Tegel Airport.

  15. Qualtrough
    Qualtrough
    August 26, 2014, 2:25 pm

    Here’s a quick fix. Barak gets on the phone with Bibi and tells him he’s about to sign an executive order requiring US/Israeli dual citizens to enter and exit the US via an obscure border crossing in northern Minnesota.

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      August 27, 2014, 1:38 am

      Not northern Minnesota, no way. Make the entry to the US via Louisiana and on through bayou after bayou after swamp full of gars and gators – my apologies to the gars and gators.

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