Friday, June 3, 2005

Palestine-Israel, Bil'in, Friday, The joint struggle continue 03 Juneawwg

Bil'in is a small village. Consist of few hundred families - 1700 inhabitants only. But, for the last three months developed strong ties with the Israeli anarchists against the wall and very persistent in nearly daily struggle against the fence. Some of us even sleep nights at the village to deter harsh night time harassment the Israeli army do frequently. And today, like all other Fridays we had another demo. About 500 - villagers among them a block of women and girls, few internationals, and about 100 Israelis of the Anarchists Against The Wall initiative and from the wider coalition against the fence. To day, because of internal Israeli consideration the state forces were a bit less harsh.

First, they did not try hard to block us from arriving to Bil'in. They only made trouble to 10 of us whose minibus (one of nine) was held for checking and had to find a replacement.

When the demonstration reached the point of 150 meters from the route of the fence building site they just blocked our advance physically... They even refrained from declaring the demonstration illegal or declaring the area as closed military zone for the Israelis.

So, the Palestinians started at that place the friday prayers long ritual, while us the Israelis set there in the shade of the olive trees.

At that place the state forces tried to bully us and arrested two comrades who refused to move a meter backwards.

After the end of the prayer ritual the Palestinian declared the end of the demonstration and most of them returned to the village while part of them and the Israelis stayed - hard to decide if to retreat, to stay or to advance.

The "bargain" that preceded the permission to stay and do the prayer there and the pressure to retreat faster when it ended was not so peacful.

Nor was the clash between the army and the shabab - the youngsters who started to throw stones after the demonstration ended.

The results were few injuries, a bit of tear gas, and retreat of the state forces who understood they are just loosing prestige.

Israeli media reported on the demo in both the internet web sites of the newspapers and the main radio channel.

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