The Blossom of the Almond tree | Machsomwatch
אורנית, מהצד הזה של הגדר

The Blossom of the Almond tree

Rachel Elior

February 7, 2019

Almond tree, Revital Ganz and Machsomwatch

Just as anyone can see the beautiful flowering of the almond tree, the first of all our area’s trees to burst into full bloom, anyone seeking knowledge, truth and justice, fairness, morality, responsibility, freedom, peace and equality, of any religious denomination, nationality, gender and race can easily see the great humane credit reserved for Machsomwatch volunteers who go forth to the Israeli military checkpoints throughout the Occupied Territories, in any weather, to remind us of the meaning of humane values and human standards in the territories that for half a century are subjected to military control, places that have long forgotten human rights of people held by force in a permanent denial of civil as well as human rights.

A checkpoint, like any border crossing or barrier, is always a human weak point, replete with tension and pressure and anxiety and the potential for violence and injury (will I be allowed through? Will I arrive on time for my long-awaited medical appointment? Will I make it on time for the wedding? The funeral? The examination? The medical checkup? My X-rays? My planned surgery?)

The volunteers of Machsomwatch, women whose average age is that of grandmothers who still remember the horrors of the Holocaust and their significance in the life of the Jewish People, remind us day in and day out of the meaning of human morality, and show us what a basic human duty actually is by their mere presence, observing, documenting and monitoring, and their willingness to help by translating, reading and writing, informing, interpreting and reporting – to the soldiers and Border Patrolmen, to the Palestinians of all ages and types living in misery amidst the checkpoints, closures and fragmentations, when they need to cross the checkpoint for work, medical care, studies, exams or medical examinations, permits or family visits, funerals or weddings.

I have been a proud supporter of Machsomwatch for many years, and hail them both orally and in writing at every opportunity. May I state here, in full responsibility, that unfortunately Revital Ganz has never been – nor is she now – a member of Machsomwatch. Revital Ganz might be a wonderful woman, professional, smart, a great family woman, active and worthy, but she has never been a member of Machsomwatch.

Anyone wishing to attack Benny Ganz or endorse him is invited to do so on the basis of the man’s own merits, beside testimonies of his friends, subordinates, choices, decisions and statements that are all open to public scrutiny and have been so for years. It is in no way acceptable to attack him for the imaginary membership of his wife, Revital Ganz, in the organization Machsomwatch that is active in guarding human rights of those whose basic human political and civil rights have been denied for half a century, and in humane, democratic and liberal aid to all those who find themselves obliged to be at the checkpoints.

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