Israeli bus driver refuses participation in anti-Palestinian hysteria

Israeli bus driver Ms Ruty Tehrani

After bad news about public transport in Israel, like women having to sit at the back of buses, some better news today.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Tel Aviv bus driver refuses to expel Arab man from bus

Today, 20:14

An Israeli bus driver in Tel Aviv refused to expel an Arab man from her bus. Some of the passengers demanded that, when the elderly man began to mutter in Arabic. They were afraid that he was a terrorist.

According to the Jerusalem Post the bus driver then said that anyone who feared that the man would commit an attack could get off.

“Definitely not a terrorist

The incident happened earlier this week on the line from Petah Tikva to Tel Aviv. The driver said in an interview that she did stop the bus following the panic. “I approached the man cautiously and asked whether all was well with him and if he needed help. I saw that he was an elderly man who did not feel so well. He did not look like he was a threat to anyone. He was certainly not a terrorist.”

After that brief conversation she turned to the concerned passengers and told them that they were free to leave the bus, but that she would not expel the man under any circumstances from her bus.

“I was taught that you must have respect everyone and that you must not discriminate against anyone.”

Ruty Tehrani is the bus driver’s name.

Politicians in Israel and quite some other countries have a lot to learn from her.

6 thoughts on “Israeli bus driver refuses participation in anti-Palestinian hysteria

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  4. Tomorrow, Friday, June 29, we will demonstrate together, Jews and Arabs, against the racist plan to demolish the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, in order to expand the settlement of Kfar Adumim.

    The plan, which was approved by the Supreme Court, will enable the demolition of the village and the expulsion of some 170 residents from their lands. The sheep pens will be destroyed, as will the ecological school for about 200 students established under a European initiative. With this ruling, the effort to judicially stop the injustice of demolitions and evictions was ended and the lives of the 173 residents of Khan al-Ahmar were abandoned to the destroyers and bulldozers. Every day could be the last day of Khan al-Ahmar.

    The forced expulsion plan is part of the government’s strategy to create a territorial contiguity of Israeli settlements between Ma’aleh Adumim and Jerusalem, to uproot ever more Palestinian communities from Area C so as to prepare the land for the annexation of these lands, to perpetuate the occupation and to prevent any possibility of establishing an independent Palestinian state.

    Among those who join the protest are: Khan al-Ahmar Coalition, Peace Now, Combatants for Peace, Gush Shalom, Maki and Hadash, Meretz, Hadash Students, Ta’ayush. The protest will take place on Friday, June 29, at 13:00, on the corner of Ben Zion and King George Street, Tel Aviv.


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  6. Settlers use crowbars to beat up rabbi, 80, who was aiding Palestinian olive harvest


    Octogenarian Israeli activist and four foreigners injured in northern West Bank when assailants arrived with crowbars, went on to burn hundreds of trees, Yesh Din says
    16 October 2019,

    An 80-year-old Israeli activist said he “feared for his life” on Wednesday when a group of masked settler youth armed with crowbars charged at him and a group of largely foreign volunteers assisting Palestinian farmers with the annual olive harvest in the northern West Bank.

    Rabbi Moshe Yehudai made the comments to Army Radio hours after he and fellow volunteers endured a brutal assault documented by rights groups at the scene.

    Of the five volunteers who were injured, four were visiting from the US, UK and other European countries, said a field worker for the Yesh Din NGO. Yehudai, an Israeli activist from Rabbis for Human Rights, was the fifth person targeted, suffering blows to the arm and head. He was evacuated to the Meir Medical Center in Kfar Saba with a broken arm.

    Rabbis for Human Rights recruits Israeli and foreign volunteers to accompany Palestinians, who say they face regular intimidation and violence while tending to crops located near settlements throughout the West Bank.

    On Wednesday morning, roughly ten volunteers were assisting Palestinian farmers from the villages of Burin and Haware when a group of over 30 masked settlers descended from Yitzhar, a settlement identified by the Israeli security establishment as a hotbed for extremism, according to a Yesh Din field worker.

    The Yesh Din field worker who spoke to The Times of Israel said that he arrived at the scene shortly after the assault began. After an IDF jeep was seen from a distance making its way to the field, the settler youth ignited a brushfire and retreated toward Yitzhar. At which point, the army vehicle turned around, the NGO staffer said.

    Firefighter planes were dispatched to the scene to put out the fire which burned down hundreds of olive trees, some decades old, according to Yesh Din.

    An IDF spokeswoman said she was looking into the incident, but was unable to provide any additional information.

    A Yesh Din volunteer with wounds sustained during an altercation with settlers int he West Bank on October 16, 2019. (Courtesy Yesh Din/Lexie Botzum)
    The foreign volunteers filed a report at a nearby police station in the settlement of Ariel, but a spokeswoman for law enforcement could not provide any details on whether an investigation had been opened.

    A statement from Yitzhar settlement later Wednesday blamed the incident on “provocations caused by extreme-left activists,” who together with Palestinian approached the settlement, which the statement said created “a security hazard.”

    Speaking from the Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance that tended to his injuries near the scene of the assault, Yehudai recalled assisting the Palestinian farmers with the other volunteers when the settlers charged at them.

    “Suddenly, the settlers came with their faces [covered]. They started running at us, they surrounded me, threw rocks at me, hit me with crowbars, giving me a head injury,” he said.

    “I told them I’m 80-years-old. Leave me alone,” he added, lamenting that the assailants refused to do so.

    The incident came as the annual olive harvest was just beginning. More than 100,000 Palestinian families rely to some extent on the income they generate from their olives and some 18 percent of Palestinian agricultural production comes from olives, according to statistics from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

    The harvest is a frequent site of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli settlers that the Israel Defense Forces says it seeks to prevent.

    Palestinian media and rights groups have reported multiple cases of Israelis interfering with the annual harvest, attacking Palestinians, stealing olives and uprooting trees.

    In many places, farmers say they face intimidation and violence from nearby extremist settlers and call in help from both foreign and Israeli supporters, including Jewish rabbis, to protect them and their crops.

    Some of the incidents are seen as attempts at revenge following Palestinian attacks on Israelis, even if the farmers targeted were not involved.

    In other cases, rights groups say, there is little motivation other than just to destroy Palestinian property.

    Israeli settlers charge that their crops have also been damaged by Palestinians, including one incident in May 2018 when around 1,000 grapevines were destroyed.

    Hate crime

    Also Wednesday morning, residents of the central West Bank village of Deir Ammar woke up to find 10 vehicles vandalized and walls spray-painted with Hebrew slogans in the latest apparent hate crime targeting Palestinians over the Green Line.

    Phrases daubed on cars and walls included: “When our brothers are being murdered, it is our obligation to not forget” and “The nation of Israel lives,” according to a Yesh Din field worker who arrived at the scene and provided photos of the damages.

    Police said they were aware of the incident and were looking into the matter.

    Last week, law enforcement opened an investigation after Palestinians in the northern West Bank village of Qira woke up to find 13 vehicles vandalized and Hebrew-language hate messages graffitied on walls throughout the town.

    Among the phrases spray-painted in the town north of the Ariel settlement were “There is no room for enemies in Israel” and “When Jews are hurt, it is our obligation not to forget.”

    Footage from security cameras in Qira caught several masked individuals walking through the village and slashing tires of a tractor and other vehicles in their path.

    Abdullah Kamil, the Governor of the Salfit District in which Qira resides, told Haaretz that the Israeli government “bears responsibility for the crime and the repeated attacks by settlers.”

    Despite the dozens of hate crimes targeting Palestinians and their property over the past year, few perpetrators are ever arrested or charged, according to rights groups.

    The incidents, often referred to as price tag attacks, are usually limited to arson and graffiti, but have sometimes included physical assaults and even murder.

    In December, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs released a report that showed a 69% increase in settler attacks on Palestinians in 2018 compared to 2017.


    Settlers attack olive harvesters, Israeli volunteers in West Bank village

    Masked settlers uproot olive trees, set groves ablaze, and beat several Israeli volunteers with stones and metal rods in the West Bank village of Burin.

    Masked men from the settlement of Yitzhar wielding metal rods and stones attacked volunteers from Rabbis for Human Rights, a human rights organization based in Israel, while they were picking olives alongside Palestinian farmers in the West Bank village of Burin on Wednesday. According to a spokesperson for the organization, settlers set fire to the olive groves, causing a blaze that spread rapidly and burned for hours.

    Rabbi Moshe Yehudai, a member of Rabbis for Human Rights’ board, was taken to Meir Medical Center after suffering severe wounds. He recounted the incident while lying on a gurney in an ambulance, as medics bandaged his head. One of the masked youths had hit him on the head with an iron rod, while another instructed him to leave. “I told them to leave me alone, that I am 80 years old and cannot run,” he said.

    Avi Dabush, the executive director of Rabbis for Human Rights, said the incident highlighted the lawlessness in the West Bank, stressing that the volunteers would not be deterred from helping the Palestinian farmers as they harvest their olives. “For the last 17 years we have helped with the harvest, and we will continue to stand up against violent bullies,” he said, adding that this was the only way toward a peaceful joint future between Jews and Arabs living on the land.

    AFP reported that Israel sent fire extinguishing planes to extinguish the fire set by the settlers. Researchers for Israeli human rights group Yesh Din estimate that the blaze consumed hundreds of acres of farmland in Burin and Huwara, both villages in the Nablus area.

    The Rabbis for Human Rights spokesperson said that a group of settlers had threatened the farmers earlier in the week, threatening to beat them and vandalize their crops. The army has failed to protect the farmers from settler attacks, he noted. Israel’s occupation policies often prevent Palestinians from accessing their own lands, while violent settlers are allowed to roam freely.

    Earlier on Wednesday morning, residents of the village of Deir Ammar woke up to discover that unknown vandals, most likely settlers from nearby outposts, had slashed tires and spray-painted Hebrew slogans and Stars of David on their homes and on their cars.


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