All That’s Left
January 09, 2009 IDF fundraising banner, outside army radio station Galgalatz, Jaffa My neighbour is worried about me. He sits me down earnestly and tells me I am in danger. It’s the … Read More
January 09, 2009
IDF fundraising banner, outside army radio station Galgalatz, Jaffa
My neighbour is worried about me. He sits me down earnestly and tells me I am in danger. It’s the Arabs. My Arab friends. ‘Because, you see, it’s not just in the West Bank. In Jaffa too. They can kill you here too.’
I’m friends with Arabs, although I’m a Jew. That’s not normal here. Oh, it’s accepted, tolerated. I’m a lefty. They feel sorry for me. I’m European – I don’t really understand.
‘There are many faces of things here,’ my neighbour says. ‘There’s the obvious face – the one we all see. But the Arabs who live here – we humiliate them every day. They hate us. You hear that–?’ A car is driving around the square, playing Arabic music really loud. ‘–it’s not just some young guy having fun. He’s saying fuck you Jews. And one day he wants to get his own back. And that’s why I’m worried about you. One day you might be sitting with some family in Jaffa – some nice Arab family–’
‘And someone who knows someone will come… I’m worried you’ll get hurt.’
‘But why pick me? There are Jews everywhere here. They can kill anyone they like.’
‘You’re the soft target,’ he says darkly. ‘You hear about that girl up north who got raped by six Arabs? We hate Jews, you fucking Jew, they told her.’
On the TV are black-masked men shooting huge rocket launchers at distant apartment buildings. ‘Palestinians,’ my neighbour says. ‘Don’t get me wrong. I don’t hate Arabs. I just don’t want to live with them. We’ve tried the right way to solve this conflict. It didn’t work. Now all that is left is the wrong way.
‘We’re all fucked. If we can’t do it the right way we might as well fucking shoot the Arabs. Shoot them all. If we can’t solve it the good way, I want to be the one holding the gun.’