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Monday, June 06, 2005

checkpoint syndrome

duplication alert: i copied this straight from angry white kid's blog. more context and details, including how to get the full text of "checkpoint syndrome", now available in english for the first time, can be read on his blog.

CHECKPOINT SYNDROME
By Liran Ron Furer

GAZA 1997

I was very excited, that first time on a checkpoint. We were all quite stressed. We were polite to the Arabs, we checked each car thoroughly. The Arabs immediately sensed that we were new recruits to the job. They asked us which unit we belonged to and how long we were going to stay. They smiled at us with their special derisory smiles when we let them go, though sometimes they hooted to make us nervous or frighten us. It took some time, but we soon learned how to work at the checkpoint. We felt more at ease, the Arabs didn't frighten us so much any more, gradually we realized that it was they that had to be frightened not us. After all, it was in our hands whether or not they were going to reach their place of work on time. It was we who could make their life very difficult. Someone told us that the more the Arabs were afraid of us the more order there would be at the checkpoint. As time passed we discovered that he was right.

*

Today we taught the Arabs at the checkpoint to sing "Alinor". Eli checked the documents of an old twisted Peugeot and noticed that the driver looked exactly like Zohar. He took out a camera and took his picture. Then he dragged him out of the car and started to sing songs from Zohar's repertoire and made the Arab sing with him, without the lyrics of course. The Arabs who sat in the car were laughing. Then the crazy Eli shouted at them: "What are you laughing at? Start singing too!". The Arabs got frightened and started to sing. We dragged them out of the car and arranged them in a line, like a choir. I tried to teach them the lyrics:
"…Aaaalinor, you are beautiful, like an angel…"
What a sight to see these Arabs singing a song of Zohar Argov. It was like in a movie.

*

The Arabs hate us because we built a State over their heads, and now we sit on top of them with these checkpoints. We have taken away their will to live and this is why they turn into terrorists, to fight us and to resist. They bomb our buses and restaurants. This is a vicious circle and everybody suffers in the end. So what does it matter? What is certain is that in a situation like this it is better to be us, the Jews.

*

We sat in the back of the jeep with our feet pressing on top of this Arab. He was lying there with his feet sticking out from the jeep. We drove and the Arabs were standing at the side of the road and watching. Our Arab was lying silently but you could hear that he was crying quietly to himself. His head was actually lying on my jacket. He was bleeding and his blood was running making a puddle of blood mixed with saliva. It disgusted me and made me angry so I caught his hair and turned his head on one side. He gave a loud cry so, to silence him, we stepped on his back more forcefully. This silenced him for a while and then he started to cry again. We came to the conclusion that he was mental or mad for certain. The company commander told us on the phone to bring him to the base. "You did fine, tigers…" He was just teasing us.

*

Today I was really nervous. The heat and the flies at the checkpoint, I felt as if I was going mad, I hit an Arab again without a reason - he tried to cross the checkpoint without papers. Still, I might have gone a bit over the top. I put him in the shed (so that others would not see) and started to hit him with my fists straight into his face, and kicked him all over his body. I don't think he will lodge a complaint against me (I remember his face well), but I mustn’t do that sort of thing. I’ve got to restrain myself, I should not let wickedness rule over me. I shouldn't let these vicious urges get the better of me.

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