Sunday 18 January 2015

Battle of Bethany

Rami Al-Ariy

People can have such different ideas of what a warrior is, what side they are on, how they fight. Today we met a warrior in Bethany who was armed only with a camera but was far more courageous than the soldiers who have shot him, thrown bombs at him, arrested and threatened him and tried to break his resolve.

We had spent the early afternoon in the music and art centre but the jovial atmosphere was abruptly halted when our co-ordinator came in and bade us to stop. Even while the echoes of the precession were still bouncing off the walls he told us that a pack of Israeli soldiers had raided some houses in the previous night and that we were going to see a man who was somehow involved.

The man was named Rami; we went to Bethany to his media studio and he showed us his base of operation for his media company. Last night he had gone to the spot where the Israelis had invaded a man’s house, ravaged his possessions and beaten him in front of his two-year old. He had photos of a ransacked apartment and drops of blood all over the floor. He could not film the event, the soldiers had blocked his entrance.

It was a moderate battle for a man who has been shot many times, has had his possessions and id taken from him. A man who fights theses gangs with only the truth of his filming against millions of dollars of armaments and thousands of thugs. He proceeded to tell us, then show us some of the savage episodes of his career which you can find for yourself on and which some of the other blogs describe.

He himself will have to appear before a military court for filming the shooting of a 12 year old lad.

By the time we left, the streets in Bethany that had felt so hospitable to us could be seen for what they were. We passed a grocery store that we has seen moments ago on Rami’s computer with soldiers firing from it. Every piece of graffiti, every piece of rubble was now inseparable from the occupation and I can only imagine what living with this could do to you.

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