Israel, Zionism and the Media

Tag: jenin

Palestinian father and son encounter the truth about Israel

(Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)

Hat tip to for this story.

The Palestinian media in the West Bank is constantly feeding its citizens with inctitement, lies and libel against Israel.

We hear stories about how people die at checkpoints as they are held up waiting to go to hospital in Israel, full of devil Israelis waiting to suck their blood.

So this story comes as a refreshing change:

On Thursday, June 3, 2010, 15 year old Muhammed Kalalwe was working in his family’s fields. They live in Jenin, a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, …. The boy noticed a deadly viper snake and tried killing it with a rock, but the dangerous creature struck out and bit his right palm. Screams and panic ensued and within minutes, the boy’s father, Hafed, grabbed his stricken son and rushed him to the Jenin Hospital. They were ill-prepared to treat the boy, had no anti-serum and decided to send him by ambulance to the Emek Medical Center in Afula. Hafed later related that he was genuinely afraid to be taken to Emek because he was sure that they would be ignored and not even spoken to. His son’s palm and arm were critically swollen and the pain was unbearable.

The humanitarian reality of Emek shocked both the father and son as they were immediately greeted in Arabic, rushed into the ER where Emek’s multi-ethnic staff administered life-saving anti-serum and brought the boy back from the brink of death. Muhammed lay for the next two days in the pediatric intensive care unit and is now resting comfortably in Emek’s pediatric surgical department from where he will be released in the next couple of days.

I asked the father how he felt now about Emek Hospital and the Israelis he has come into contact with. Staring me straight in the eyes he said, “Our people do not know the truth about you and our medicine has a long way to go. My son and I are not the same as we were before this happened and I will share this with my family and friends. May Allah bless all of you.” As he spoke, he gesticulated determinedly in a classic Middle Eastern style and when we shook hands as I wished them both well, the grip was firm and real. I have shaken many such hands and gazed into many Palestinian eyes that had seen here a reality that they never expected to see.

While walking back to my office, I passed one of my best friends – the Head of our Emergency Services, Dr. Azziz Daroushe who is a Muslim from the nearby Israeli village of Iksal. I asked him what he thought about this latest case where we were able to save another life from Jenin. With a twinkle in his eye and a knowing grin he answered, “It’s a good thing there are snakes.” (my emphasis)

If only the Palestinian leadership would genuinely seek peace, what a huge difference Israel’s medical and technological know-how could make to the lives of everyone in the region.

The wikipedia article about Afula has this to say:

Due to Afula’s proximity to the West Bank, it became a target of Arab terrorism in Second Intifada. On 6 April 1994, a car bombing carried out by Hamas in the center of Afula killed five people. Afula also was the target of a suicide attack on a bus on 5 May 2002, in which one person died several people were injured at Afula’s central bus station. On 19 May 2003, the city’s Amakim Mall was bombed, killing three and wounding 70. This attack was carried out by Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Fatah movement’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.

On 17 July 2006, Hezbollah fired Katyusha rockets at Afula, one of the southernmost rocket attacks on Israel from Lebanon. Six people were treated for shock as a result of the bombing. On 28 July, a rocket landed causing a fire. The Katyusha carried 100 kilograms of explosives.

No wonder Hafed was worried.

And if you think this is unique, well it’s not even the first time Ha’Emek saved a child from Jenin from a snake bite.

Please read about the work Ha’EMek does with its staff of Jews and Arabs

Israelis and Palestinians – surprising examples which challenge preconceptions

Two events happened recently in Israel which in their own strange way debunk some myths about how  Israelis treat Palestinians, especially Israeli Arab, and how Palestinians view Israelis.

First story in Ha’aretz: Violent settlers freed over ‘improper’ police conduct.

Apparently Israeli police in Kfar Sava have been using entrapment; not against Palestinians but against Israeli Jewish settlers.

The story does not show either the settlers or the police in a particularly good light.

The police posed as Palestinians in an illegal West Bank settlement. Note that it is designated illegal by Ha’aretz. Others would disagree. The police were pretending to fix a tyre. Now, if you remember, recently two policeman were killed by Palestinians they went to help who were pretending to fix a puncture. (This itself says something of the dangers of being ‘nice’ to Palestinians when a minority are prepared to kill you for it.) The settlers attacked the police who they thought were Palestinians and vandalised the (unmarked police) car. The police promptly arrested them.

The settlers were freed because of the provocation. The police were reprimanded by a judge for endangering life recklessly – their own.

Now although this is somewhat unsavoury the police were acting to protect Palestinians from extremist Jewish settlers by provoking them to expose themselves by this ruse. When do we hear about such things in the UK press? Most would find it unbelievable that Israeli police are trying to root out extremist Jews to protect Palestinians in the West Bank.

Police sources told Ha’aretz that the technique is established and effective when it comes to the arrest of settlers involved in attacking Palestinians.

says Ha’aretz. Sometimes, despite the attempts to characterise Israelis as ethnic cleansers, apartheid-mongers and worse, stories like this show us that things are not as black and white as you might think. Despite the dubious nature of the strategy it puts the police in a positive light, don’t you think?

Second an Associated Press story on

A Palestinian youth orchestra from Jenin travelled to Holon in Israel to sing and perform for Holocaust survivors. Just read that sentence again.

Strings for Peace, youth orchestra from Jenin refugee camp, gives touching musical performance for Holocaust survivors in Israeli town Holon as part of Good Deeds Day. Zeid, one of musicians in group: Only people who have been through suffering understand each other….

the youths had no idea they were performing for people who lived through Nazi genocide — or even what the Holocaust was.

One of the pupils expressed sympathy and was shocked at learning the story of the elderly survivors. Some had never met ordinary Israelis before. The Holocaust is not taught to Palestinians and Denial is commonplace.

The audience were shocked when they learned the youths were from Jenin but when it was announced they would sing for peace the audience burst into applause.

“I’m here to raise spirits,” Younis [the conductor] said. “These are poor, old people.”

If only there were more events like this to bring these two peoples together. It should be noted that this event was part of a programme organised by Shari Arison, a wealthy Israeli business woman as part of the annual Good Deeds Day events.