FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Human Shields in Bethelem

by Jordan Flaherty

I’m staying in the al azzeh refugee camp, in Bethlehem, along with about twenty other international civilians. We’re here to act as human shields, because we’ve heard an Israeli invasion is imminent. It’s 1:30pm right now, on Easter Sunday, and some are expecting the invasion within the next two hours.

I’m staying with a lovely family. They have been so hospitable to us. As with most residents of the camp, they’ve been here since 1948, when they were expelled from their village in what is now Israel. The village is now a national park in Israel.

On the hill above the camp is a Israeli miltary snipers post. The main street that runs down the village is in plain sight of the snipers post. To get where we were staying in the village, most of us had to cross this street. It was a quick, low, dash across the street. As I ran, the sniper fired. I heard at least six shots fired in the short distance I ran, exposed. The shots began as I came into view, and stopped shortly after I made it to the other side. They were clearly aimed at me. And, by the sound of them, they were close. All night long, there was the sound of gun shots, as the military shot into our village. We stayed clear of the windows. Some of the windows were blocked with sandbags.

The gun and bullets were, no doubt, paid for by my tax dollars. Which is, of course, why we are here.

Meanwhile, there are others of us in the other two camps in Bethlehem. Also, some of us are riding in the ambulances, which the military has been firing at. Again, the idea is to use our priviliged status as international civilians to act as human shields against these outright violations of international law and human decency. There are about 100 international observers from the US and Europe here. Mostly US, British, and Italian. Deheisha refugee camp has mostly Italians staying there.

There is also about sixty international observers in Ramallah. Yesterday, they defied curfew and went to the hospital to give blood. There were gunshots, but they made it. Today, we have just heard they are trying to block the Israeli tanks from reaching the hospital.

When the Israeli military comes, we expect them to act as before: taking all the men in the camp, stripping them down, arresting them, torturing them. We will tell the military that we live here with them, we are Americans, and if they take them, they must take us as well.

For more info email: jerusalem.indymedia.org

Jordan Flaherty is from Brooklyn, NY.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jordan Flaherty is a filmmaker and journalist based in New Orleans. You can see more of his work at jordanflaherty.org.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
January 20, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Divide and Rule: Class, Hate, and the 2016 Election
Andrew Levine
When Was America Great?
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: This Ain’t a Dream No More, It’s the Real Thing
Yoav Litvin
Making Israel Greater Again: Justice for Palestinians in the Age of Trump
Linda Pentz Gunter
Nuclear Fiddling While the Planet Burns
Ruth Fowler
Standing With Standing Rock: Of Pipelines and Protests
David Green
Why Trump Won: the 50 Percenters Have Spoken
Dave Lindorff
Imagining a Sanders Presidency Beginning on Jan. 20
Pete Dolack
Eight People Own as Much as Half the World
Roger Harris
Too Many People in the World: Names Named
Steve Horn
Under Tillerson, Exxon Maintained Ties with Saudi Arabia, Despite Dismal Human Rights Record
John Berger
The Nature of Mass Demonstrations
Stephen Zielinski
It’s the End of the World as We Know It
David Swanson
Six Things We Should Do Better As Everything Gets Worse
Alci Rengifo
Trump Rex: Ancient Rome’s Shadow Over the Oval Office
Brian Cloughley
What Money Can Buy: the Quiet British-Israeli Scandal
Mel Gurtov
Donald Trump’s Lies And Team Trump’s Headaches
Kent Paterson
Mexico’s Great Winter of Discontent
Norman Solomon
Trump, the Democrats and the Logan Act
David Macaray
Attention, Feminists
Yves Engler
Demanding More From Our Media
James A Haught
Religious Madness in Ulster
Dean Baker
The Economics of the Affordable Care Act
Patrick Bond
Tripping Up Trumpism Through Global Boycott Divestment Sanctions
Robert Fisk
How a Trump Presidency Could Have Been Avoided
Robert Fantina
Trump: What Changes and What Remains the Same
David Rosen
Globalization vs. Empire: Can Trump Contain the Growing Split?
Elliot Sperber
Dystopia
Dan Bacher
New CA Carbon Trading Legislation Answers Big Oil’s Call to Continue Business As Usual
Wayne Clark
A Reset Button for Political America
Chris Welzenbach
“The Death Ship:” An Allegory for Today’s World
Uri Avnery
Being There
Peter Lee
The Deep State and the Sex Tape: Martin Luther King, J. Edgar Hoover, and Thurgood Marshall
Patrick Hiller
Guns Against Grizzlies at Schools or Peace Education as Resistance?
Randy Shields
The Devil’s Real Estate Dictionary
Ron Jacobs
Singing the Body Electric Across Time
Ann Garrison
Fifty-five Years After Lumumba’s Assassination, Congolese See No Relief
Christopher Brauchli
Swing Low Alabama
Dr. Juan Gómez-Quiñones
La Realidad: the Realities of Anti-Mexicanism
Jon Hochschartner
The Five Least Animal-Friendly Senate Democrats
Pauline Murphy
Fighting Fascism: the Irish at the Battle of Cordoba
Susan Block
#GoBonobos in 2017: Happy Year of the Cock!
Louis Proyect
Is Our Future That of “Sense8” or “Mr. Robot”?
Charles R. Larson
Review: Robert Coover’s “Huck out West”
David Yearsley
Manchester-by-the-Sea and the Present Catastrophe
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail