Getting around

I did most of my exploring with Murad. I only did my own thing a couple of times. Once when I went to Jerusalem with Gaie (another volunteer who helped at the farm for a few days) and another time when we split up in Rammalah and I went to see qalandia. But we always left Marda together. Murad wasnt into the idea of me travelling by myself in case I got mistaken for a settler or deported for being a friend of Palestine. They’re weren’t any bus stops in Marda so unless you hail a passing taxi or sherut you hitch a ride to somewhere you can get a bus. The nearest place to us was Zattara Junction (Tappuah junction for Israelis). From here you can go in three directions north to nablus, east to jericho and south to Rammalah. It used to be checkpoint but some of these have eased off in recent years. Theres still a large miltary presence here though. Lots of Israelis use the junction so cars are still stopped, ids are still checked and people are still harassed. We saw one guy in his early 20s being checked out by two soldiers wanting to know where he had been, where he was going, and why he needed to go there.

'Israeli only' bus stop
‘Israeli only’ bus stop

As we make our way to the bus stop to Rammalah we have to go through the rigmarole of crossing the side of the road we need to the central reservation to avoiding Israeli only bus stop which Palestinans are not allowed to be near, to then cross back 50m further along where the anybody else bus stop is. You keep your head down here as you feel the eyes of soldiers and settlers weigh down on you. You’re at the mercy of the army here, they have done and can do anything they want to you here. This a cold violence that all Palestinans have to go through on a daily basis. 

Like the 'forbidden zone' in Planet of the Apes
Like something out of Planet of the Apes – “Don’t go into the Forbidden zone”

One thought on “Getting around

  1. “Like something out of Planet of the Apes – “Don’t go into the Forbidden zone”. Maybe you haven’t heard but Israeli Jews are being murdered by ‘Palestinians’ in the west bank. If you choose to call the ‘Palestinians’ behavior that of apes then that’s your choice, but pretending like it’s not a death threat for Israeli Jews to wander around in the west bank is ridiculous.
    And yes, there are Israeli Jews who live in settlements in the west bank but is not for the different roads and security measures that they take they would have been murdered in much higher numbers than they already are. Only this week several Israeli Jews were attacked, some murdered in terror attacks committed by Arabs in the west bank.
    On behalf of the israeli government I would like to apologize to you that Israel tries to causion its citizens from being lynched to death.
    As far as I know the British, American, French and every other normal country n the world do exactly the same in the travel warnings they issue on their formal websites regarding travelling to different parts of the world, INCLUDING the west bank.


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