Pictures from Palestine

from holly

zaytoun group

The ordeal I went through with my nerves at the airport when leaving Palestine and Israel, especially in relation to my photographs was actually quite significant. I had heard various horror stories of activists leaving Palestine being black listed for having visited the west bank, or having volunteered for a pro-Palestinian organisation, or being questioned initimately about number in their phone books or emails on their computer, really put the fear of god in me. I made sure i cleared my brothers camera of pictures in Jerusalem (with the help of a very sweet guy called Omar, who, having lived in the USA for eleven years, felt more like a european than a Palestinian until his neice wandered in with a drawing for him.. which he praised in arabic and gave many smiles and hugs for- and like a true palestinian made me sit and drink tea in his store for a good hour before leaving for dinner. It was a fascinating conversation and i really admire him for returning to palestine to be with his family) anyway, photos on a CD, sealed in an envelope, placed in the hands of a good friend who was leaving for a cyprus a few days later... i went to the airport physically free of photos, but fearing my reaction to the israeli security and my ability to act nonchalant and passive when being questioned.

but i feel that every picture was worth the worry.
I only wish i had taken more of my friends.

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