Today, I , a jew chanted Haibar Haibar ya Yahud Jesh Mouhamad Soufa Oud,(Haibar Haibar jews the army of Mouhamad will return). Not because I wanted Jews to die, but because I was suffocating with anger & felt so helpless, because I wanted to remind myself that tides can turn, and the ones that are oppressed now can be tomorrow's oppressors. My throat went sore from shouting & I smoked a full pack of cigarettes because I was so nervous. The sights I have seen reminded me of the videos I watched during the post election riots in Iran, the violent crackdown on unarmed civil protesters. "You are like the revolutionary guards" I yelled. "You are like Bassij".
We gathered at Damascus gate, about 200 Palestinians & Jews for a counter protest vigil held in front of the traditional flag march celebrating the Israeli occupation of west Jerusalem in 1967. The true essence of this march is displaying gloating, malicious joy to the people who lost property, Muslim sovereignty over sacred sites, and freedom, a show of racist hate poisoned by martial power. The market near Bab Al Amoud was packed with heavily armed soldiers, some of them were riding horses and they kept driving those horses into the crowd, preventing almost any kind of gathering, violently beating and arresting people, threatening, kicking, shoving everyone- including young girls, elderly women & photographers. The protesters were chased by the cavalry & fled terrified from the horses.
I heard a soldier ordering another "taase shmad" – destroy them, in Hebrew. My friend kept whispering, shocked: Phsychos. A 15 years old girl was chanting to the soldiers bravely & was brutally kicked by them. Man who held a Palestinian flag was beaten just for that. After the fascist march entered the old city we quietly followed it, mostly to document possible damage to body & property, but also to witness by ourselves what the Palestinian residents of the old city were about to endure. We were warned not to hang out by ourselves because the settlers might attack us. I found myself standing in a corner with two of my friends, watching an incited crowd frantically chanting like predatory animals, drunk with messianic mania , poisoned by hate. The soldiers prevented a Palestinian boy from going home, partially because his life might have been endangered by the feisty mobs of yeshivah guys. The boy was standing behind the barriers, sadly looking at the rabid people who occupied the street. A Palestinian woman crossed the crows, sheltering her children with her veil, and the settlers threw water on her. All shops were closed by military order, and the few people who dared to cross the street looked to both sides worried, as chants of " Kill all Arabs" "Destroy Palestine" were heard. The settlers sang : The eternal nation isn't afraid of a long way. Ofcurse you are not afraid I thought. You have guns & batons to protect you while we are unarmed.
Later on we heard that two female activists were attacked, spitted on, pushed to the corner & beaten with sticks. My friend had tears in her eyes, and I felt great agony and pain, betrayed by my own people, absorbed with hate and fear, the people who were my friends now being my enemies and my enemies became my friends. I grew up at the western part of this city, but now it wounded me so deep, it showed me so much brutality, so much ugliness, madness, evil I was scared.