Israeli and Jewish values at work

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Mr. Salah Musa is a Palestinian activist and IT strategist.

Perspective

by

Salah Musa

 

O

O

n 11 August, Mr. Jihad Abu Hilal, a 25 year-old Palestinian farmer from Toubas waited for four hours under the burning sun at the Israeli military checkpoint set up next to the illegal Israeli settlement of “Mihola”. When it was his turn to pass, an Israeli soldier demanded that he take off his clothes before even approaching.

n 11 August, Mr. Jihad Abu Hilal, a 25 year-old Palestinian farmer from Toubas waited for four hours under the burning sun at the Israeli military checkpoint set up next to the illegal Israeli settlement of “Mihola”. When it was his turn to pass, an Israeli soldier demanded that he take off his clothes before even approaching.

 

Mortified and shocked, the farmer had no other choice but to take off his clothes, save for his underwear. The farmer described the horrific events to reporters; “I was going to my farm in order to prepare for the winter season. Soldiers stopped my car and asked all of us in the car to get down”. Hilal explained that the soldiers then demanded he approach the checkpoint while taking off their clothes. “The soldier said, ‘before you come near take off your clothes’. I felt the world spinning around me but the soldier then screamed again, ‘take them off and don’t be hesitant. You’ll all take off your clothes’. I was in total shock”.

Mortified and shocked, the farmer had no other choice but to take off his clothes, save for his underwear. The farmer described the horrific events to reporters; “I was going to my farm in order to prepare for the winter season. Soldiers stopped my car and asked all of us in the car to get down”. Hilal explained that the soldiers then demanded he approach the checkpoint while taking off their clothes. “The soldier said, ‘before you come near take off your clothes’. I felt the world spinning around me but the soldier then screamed again, ‘take them off and don’t be hesitant. You’ll all take off your clothes’. I was in total shock”.

 

 

Mr. Hilal explained that after forcing him and the rest of the passengers to take off their clothes, they took the garments, mixed them up and threw them about two hundred meters away from the checkpoint. After a thorough and humiliating search, the passengers had to look for their clothes. After that ordeal, Hilal was able to reach his farm near the village of Bardala in the northern Jordan valley.

Mr. Hilal explained that after forcing him and the rest of the passengers to take off their clothes, they took the garments, mixed them up and threw them about two hundred meters away from the checkpoint. After a thorough and humiliating search, the passengers had to look for their clothes. After that ordeal, Hilal was able to reach his farm near the village of Bardala in the northern Jordan valley.

 

 

But Mr. Hilal was not the Palestinian civilian who reported such a horrifying story.

But Mr. Hilal was not the Palestinian civilian who reported such a horrifying story.

 

 

A college student who declined to give his name also reported a similar degrading experience. On his way to visit his family in the Jordan valley, an Israeli military jeep chased him. “I had heard about what the soldiers do to those passing through the checkpoints, so I decided to walk through a dirt road and avoid the humiliation,” he recounted.

A college student who declined to give his name also reported a similar degrading experience. On his way to visit his family in the Jordan valley, an Israeli military jeep chased him. “I had heard about what the soldiers do to those passing through the checkpoints, so I decided to walk through a dirt road and avoid the humiliation,” he recounted.

 

 

Tens of meters away from him, the soldiers ordered the terrified college student to take off his clothes before proceeding towards him for a body search.

Tens of meters away from him, the soldiers ordered the terrified college student to take off his clothes before proceeding towards him for a body search.

 

 

In a similar incident, Mohamed Yousef attempted to walk through the woods to reach the village of Toubas. 10 km away from his destination, he heard screams and then bullets came thundering his way. “I heard what the residents go through on the checkpoints and I just couldn’t put myself through it so I thought that by walking a much longer road, I would be safe from the beatings and humiliation. I was wrong”, Mohamed told reporters.

In a similar incident, Mohamed Yousef attempted to walk through the woods to reach the village of Toubas. 10 km away from his destination, he heard screams and then bullets came thundering his way. “I heard what the residents go through on the checkpoints and I just couldn’t put myself through it so I thought that by walking a much longer road, I would be safe from the beatings and humiliation. I was wrong”, Mohamed told reporters.

 

 

After stopping, Mohamed was confronted with five Israeli soldiers who physically attacked him before they ordered him to take off his clothes. The excuse was the usual, security reasonsé

After stopping, Mohamed was confronted with five Israeli soldiers who physically attacked him before they ordered him to take off his clothes. The excuse was the usual, security reasonsé

 

 

In another incident, Israeli occupation soldiers chased a Palestinian shepherd with their jeep as he was tending to his herd. Once they caught up with him, they proceeded to beat him with astonishing cruelty then left him for dead.

In another incident, Israeli occupation soldiers chased a Palestinian shepherd with their jeep as he was tending to his herd. Once they caught up with him, they proceeded to beat him with astonishing cruelty then left him for dead.

 

 

Another shepherd who tried to intervene when soldiers demanded that residents take off their clothes at the checkpoint told reporters, “They took me away from my herd towards one of their jeeps. Pointing a gun at me and beating me, they forced me to repeat their orders on a loud speaker for all the residents to hear”.

Another shepherd who tried to intervene when soldiers demanded that residents take off their clothes at the checkpoint told reporters, “They took me away from my herd towards one of their jeeps. Pointing a gun at me and beating me, they forced me to repeat their orders on a loud speaker for all the residents to hear”.

 

 

In their latest bid to humiliate Palestinian civilians and fill their hearts with bitterness, Israeli occupation soldiers throughout the Nablus District have devised new ways to make every day a humiliating hell. In response, Palestinian residents in the District have resorted to walking extra kilometers in order to avoid the Israeli military checkpoints and their humiliation. But walking through the rugged mountain roads is often unsafe and may not always yield positive results, as it is evident from the stories that the residents reported on 11 August. For now though, it appears to be their only hope though of perhaps avoiding an unforgettably degrading and inhumane experience.

In their latest bid to humiliate Palestinian civilians and fill their hearts with bitterness, Israeli occupation soldiers throughout the Nablus District have devised new ways to make every day a humiliating hell. In response, Palestinian residents in the District have resorted to walking extra kilometers in order to avoid the Israeli military checkpoints and their humiliation. But walking through the rugged mountain roads is often unsafe and may not always yield positive results, as it is evident from the stories that the residents reported on 11 August. For now though, it appears to be their only hope though of perhaps avoiding an unforgettably degrading and inhumane experience.

Mr. Salah Musa is a Palestinian activist and IT strategist.

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