Monday, January 11

Violence by the authorities, no one seems to care very much

Hikmat is 2 weeks old, a tiny little girl, red faced and well wrapped up.
This morning the police broke the door to the small house she lives in, tear-gassed the place, her room included. Then they carried out a violent search, basically taking the place apart. They didn't find a thing, as her young parents know well. There is a relative living not far way who's involved in things better not mentioned.  They carry the same family name, so perhaps that is how the police justify themselves. 
In any case, little is left of the small home, the wooden ceiling partially removed, holes made in the wall, all electricity points removed, cooking stove and new fridge damaged beyond repair, after the police finished their search. Nothing was found, the damage done is huge: the bathroom basically taken apart, sewage pipes connecting the toilet all broken, the shower cubicle taken apart, all taps leaking. Furniture broken, but all of that is nothing compared to the traumatized children, who woke up choking on tear-gas.  When i visited the family today the sligtly older kids were still crying, scared of any stranger entering what was left of their home.
Hikmat was the only one peacefully sleeping, perhaps she's forgotten, who knows what goes on inside baby heads.

But Hikmat not the only one who suffered violence from the authorities over the last few days.
Ask Abu Isa, whose son is laying unconscious and brain damaged attached to life support machinery in Tel HaShomer hospital. The kid was beaten up by two "security goons guards" employed by the municipality to guard the beach park. What the guards didn't notice is that there was a witness to their acts. A witness who called the police and whose testimony put the guards under arrest.
The witness' testimony makes it clear the boy and his friend (who was released from hospital in the mean time) did not start the fight. In fact they begged to guards to stop.
he amazing thing is that the security company tried to cook up a story and went to the park's storage room manager in order to convince him to file a complaint there had been a break-in and stuff had been stolen the night of the violence. Thankfully the store room manager refused to do so but it makes one wonder; what if there had been no witness and what if the manager had been a little more "compliant"?  Violence by the authorities has become almost too common to mention in Jaffa.

1 comment:

e.e. said...

There are no words for the hideous acts performed against children.
On the one hand, I am so proud of the Israeli delegate of doctors and relief helpers sent to Haiti: my brother-in-law flew there this morning, as he is a reserves medic.
On the other hand, all this is happening under our noses.
There a whole lot of cognitive dissonance going on.
Sometimes I can't believe it's the same country.