In the Ghettos

Sheikh Saed, a small village in Southeast Jerusalem, and perhaps a neighborhood of the nearby Jabal Mukabbir, a larger village. Several families founded this village, when Jabal Mukabbir became overcrowded. For all municipal services – schools, infirmaries, garbage disposal – the residents of Sheikh Saed turned to the larger village. Groceries, too.  

And then the separation wall was erected. 

Here is how the village looks on the outside, surrounded by a fence and barbed wire all around:  



The checkpoint at the entry:  


This is how residents leave and return to the village:  



Garbage is no longer disposed:  


A watchtower overlooking the village (posted at Jabal Mukabbir):  


In March 2006 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the residents of Sheikh Saed, against the wall. I just now read the ruling (I only found a Hebrew link, sorry. For further reading in English, see report by Ir-Amim). Paragraph 40 of the Supreme Court’s ruling reads as follows: 

“When comparing the extent of damage to security by the decided route with the extent of damage to the residents, and when weighing military considerations against humanitarian considerations, we find that security-wise there are many [alternate] routes, while the route that was chosen is the one that inflicts humanitarian damage to the greatest extent on the residents of Sheikh Saed.” 

The government appealed. Three years have gone by. No further ruling has been reached up to now. There is no hurry. 


, East of Jerusalem. The route of the Separation Wall blocks access from the neighborhood to East Jerusalem. How bitterly funny it was to drive a few hundred meters along this wall heading south, only to see, right by the two soldiers at the checkpoint where the wall ends, a Palestinian man leaning on the fence of his own home. The wall reaches his waist. Go see for yourself. 

Through this gate (aka ha-Pishpash), passage is allowed for school children and some Abu-Dis residents, those holding a blue [i.e., Israeli] ID. About two-hundred people. The soldiers have the list. 



The photos were taken this morning, May 15, 2009.  

The weekend is here. Maybe you’ll go out tonight. Maybe you’ll go tomorrow to visit friends. When leaving your house, just imagine for a moment yourselves, going through these fences and gates. 

Click here for a Hebrew version of this post. 

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11 Responses to In the Ghettos

  1. Nina says:

    And still they said “there’s no such thing like occupation”…

  2. kippahandcollar says:

    Thank you for the work you are doing.

    When reading over a feed aggregator with a light coloured background, the white text becomes illegible. I’m not certain how to fix this, but I thought you should know.

  3. It’s a good and important thing, sharing the voice of reason in English. It’s about time Israelis like us will have a voice other than the one heard by AIPAC, the ultra right gang.

  4. yaara says:

    Hey Nina. Good to see you here.
    Many solders ask me, whenever I use the word ‘occupation’ – “what occupation”?. And it is an innocent question (in moat cases) they really don’t know.

  5. yaara says:

    Thank you, kippahandcollar. I don’t know how to fix this too, Will think of something.

  6. yaara says:

    Shalom Shaoul, I cant agree more. You are absolutely right.

  7. Aryeh says:

    Kippahandcollar – The default font of the blog is grey, but we got complaints that the grey on black was difficult to read, so I tried making a bigger contrast with the white. As the technical Sancho of the blog, I left the latest post in its original default grey. If that is better for you, perhaps we’ll stay with that.

  8. Harry says:

    Can you enlarge the fonts? That’ll do, I think.

  9. Aryeh says:

    Thanks, Harry. I’ve made the font bigger for the latest post:

    Let me know if that helps. – Aryeh

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