Something’s changed here recently; their attitude toward us has improved.
A large sign - “Beit HaShalom” – hangs on Beit HaMeriva and long Israeli flags extend down to the street. Soldiers are stationed on the roof and it is surrounded by razor wire. That’s called “Shalom.”
In fact, the entire area is “decorated” with various signs, like “Celebrating freedom, on the way to redemption.”
Passover has ended; now the Cave of the Patriarchs area is relatively quiet. Many tourists are there, from various places. A group of Americans with a guide sits at ‘Abed’s shop talking to ‘Abed’s son, Muhammad, who speaks English well. ‘Abed is very bitter about all the political leaders – from the Palestinian Authority, from Israel, from Saudi Arabia, Putin, etc. “We’re all small and weak compared to them,” he says.
We visited the Jewish industrial area that set itself up in the middle of a Palestinian neighborhood. We looked at Giv’at Gal above and the mobile homes placed there. A question arose: How do they bring a mobile home through a military checkpoint? In other words – does the army allow it?
The owner of a shop selling second-hand electrical appliances invites us in, hands us over to his landlady so she can take us to an upper step leading to her roof to view the “landscape” of the hill with the mobile homes: next to the high wall they erected around their house tractors are working, making a mess, very noisy, on land belonging to the Jabbar family. More land expropriation? During holidays soldiers are stationed on her roof.
We accepted the invitation of the woman whose name – how symbolic – is Salam to come in for tea, and heard the whole story. She says it’s hard to make a living, economic conditions are difficult and that affects everything…we exchanged phone numbers. Is there a way to find out what’s going on with that settlement?