Qalandiya - About three occupier crimes.

Tamar Fleishman; Translator: Tal H.

The media version
has it that “during the Yom Kippur Eve prayers, an attempt to commit a terrorist attack in the Old City of Jerusalem was thwarted. The terrorist, resident of the Qalandiya refugee camp, was shot and killed.”
(Walla news website)
I came to hear what the refugee camp residents tell about the incident that they had either witnessed themselves or heard about from witnesses.

What I was told by acquaintances was that the fellow came near the entrance to  the Old City, where a Jew dressed in black (perhaps a rabbi, said someone) expressed his anger at the Palestinian who chose this day of all days – holy to Jews – to come there. The Palestinian answered, the Jew grew angrier, a brawl ensued when they pushed each other and yelled at one another. Then the Palestinian noticed policemen approaching and began to run away, but their bullets were faster.

The fact that drew my attention in the official notices was the image of the “weapon” held by the Palestinian with which he was allegedly threatening Jews: not a pistol, not a knife, not screwdriver, not even a vegetable peeler. The weapon shown in the photo was a… tester (that tests electricity currents).

A tester is not lethal, that is certain. Still the question remains – why was this Palestinian murdered?

The news headline on the media: “Soldiers are suspected of having sexually  assaulted Palestinian women at Qalandiya Checkpoint. An investigation is ongoing.”
The item itself mentions that these soldiers are also suspected of having stolen money from Palestinians.

Whoever knows Qalandiya Checkpoint was not surprised.

What could be surprising when an occupation army regards the occupied population as a free target to be dealt with as it pleases?

Stories of thefts and bribes that soldiers as well as policemen either get or at least demand here are no news, just as are stories about sexual assaults – which, due to the sensitivity of the subject – are less discussed but are definitely passed around among people. Such  is the testimony of a person who told me a few days ago that while standing in a waiting line before crossing the checkpoint he saw a Palestinian woman who was instructed by the inspecting soldier to enter the hold, a cell adjacent to the soldiers’ post.

I who have been held there more than once know it is no fun. But who am I to complain compared to a Palestinian woman?

Ten minutes later the woman was released, extremely upset.

The man asked her what had happened inside, and was told that a soldier followed her inside and touched her up.

About the bribery and thieving – there are countless testimonies.

An incident that took place about ten days ago:

A policeman who exited the checkpoint compound approached Marwan, one of the vendor boys there, and told him to run to Raouf (a resident of A-Ram) and bring him quickly for a permit has arrived for one of the members of his family. The policeman also gave Marwan money for a taxi, to make it quick.

Not long later Marwan returned with Raouf. The policeman shackled Raouf, took him in for detention and sent Marwan packing.

Now Raouf, about 35 years old, is in prison, and the boy Marwan? –Not to be envied…

#And the rest will be told in the chronicles of Palestine.