So I hated to do it, but we spent the whole of Tuesday on one of those
cattle drives tourist trips that require that you get on a bus, off a bus, on a bus, off a bus, listen to a story, eat at the pre-selected restaurant where your tour guide already made a kickback deal for you to eat crappy felafel, look at the same souvenir crap made out of plastic and wonder which relative gets which piece of crap… which of course is made in China. But the point is that when you’re in Israel, you simply must visit a few major locations and this annoying ass tour allowed us to visit all of them in one day. So that’s what we did…we saw Jerusalem and it was wonderful. I hope that you decide to visit the Holy City one day as well. When and if you do, remember that while you’re looking at all of these beautiful ancient sights, the West Bank is actually behind you and it’s full of Palestinians. On Monday, we went to Jerusalem too, but then we kept going and actually crossed the infamous fortified wall into the West Bank and met real life Palestinians.
Second Class Citizens:
If I told you that you couldn’t go to the moon, you’d definitely tell me that you don’t give a damn and that you would never want to go to the moon anyway. But what if I told you that you were not allowed to leave your neighborhood…or to cross the street?
Now, I imagine that I’ve got your attention. This is the lunacy of life in the West Bank.
Big Problems/Small Solutions:
So let’s back up for a sec– Dr. Daddy is an international relations scholar and when we began throwing around the idea of going to Israel (back in March), his only request was that we pay a visit to the West Bank.
Enter Gamillah Yafit Biso of Humans Without Borders. One day back in 2002, while sitting in the lobby of a Jerusalem hospital, a tearful Arab woman was worried about how she would get her child home. You see, Palestinians are not allowed to drive or even enter many areas in Jerusalem and the West Bank, and the cost of cab rides is incredibly prohibitive. Over-hearing this, Gamillah volunteered to give her a ride back to her village. The woman then explained that her child needed dialysis treatment, and would have to return to the hospital the following day. Gamillah had to work and could not offer her a ride, but found a friend to meet her at the IDF check point. The idea stuck. Humans Without Borders was born! Thirteen years later, Gamillah has organized a humanitarian army of 200 volunteers that have helped Palestinian families with both transportation and permits to Israeli hospitals. Obviously, the Palestinian/Israeli conflict is a huge problem…and I ain’t got the answers Sway! Sometimes, huge problems require simple solutions. Below are images of one woman’s quest to overcome the divides of occupation.
I’m giving away a year’s supply of Henna Sooq’s Red Raj Henna (12, 100g boxes)! All you have to do is comment on all the Israel related posts that have the ‘CurlyNikki WorldWide’ logo at the bottom. On May 30th (at 5pm EST), one lucky commenter will be randomly chosen to receive #AllTheHenna! Good luck!