Tel Aviv Diary - Nov 19-23, 2015 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

November 19, 2015

server problems. computer problems.

before two today i was in the seven stars mall kind of to give myself a little recompense after a nasty teeth cleaning. every where i walked i heard only Arabic. Salesgirls arguing over the neatness of the shelves, an old woman walking behind her son who was busy with his cell phone, a group of middle-aged women gossiping over coffee. It was kind of normal and it comforted me. then i got back to the car and at another mall two men had been stabbed to death. by the time i got home there was another terror attack and 3 more people killed. Would I have changed my visit to the mall had i known?

November 20, 2015

spent today (and yesterday) translating an article by Naim Araidi for the Jerusalem Review about Pan-Arabism. It must have been written - and not totally completing - when he knew he was on his way out because he makes no bones about saying that you can't have an Arab-Democratic state. He was such a diplomatic person - i couldn't believe he was so adamant - but all we ever talked about when we talked about politics was the necessity for peace. So I learned another side of him, and a lot about Arab history. He concludes: "Arab nationalism is an illusion, a mirage in the entire region from Southwest Asia to North Africa."

November 21, 2015

Another terrorist attack - 4 people - Kiryat Gat.situation not known.

Last time we were in Berlin we had breakfast every morning at the the big department store, the KDV. Because our friends eat there. But i don't eat there ever again unless they apologize for removing all products from the Golan Heights as well as the territories. Of course I am against the occupation, but i also know that 30,000 Palestinians depend on those factories for their livelihood. And what kind of tact turns away Jewish products after the Nuremberg laws. For breakfast this morning I decided to find out why all the kids at the norsery school ask for more sandwiches. Whole wheat bread, tehina, and silan (date honey). That's it. very local culinary creation.

My computer is about to collapse. Ezi says it's because i open too many applications and work it too hard, but I know that it's my deep thinking that burns them out all the time. Anyway if there is a gap in my communications you'll know why.

November 22, 2105

Dizengoff Center - late afternoon. No room to move. People all over the place. we had to wait in line fifteen minutes before we could even get some information on the computer we wanted to buy. Then we find out a girl has been murdered in Gush Etzion. Then we find out that Brussels is on lockdown. The situation is crazy. Suddenly I remembered how I was walking in the U of R campus with Steve Borst I think when someone said that Kennedy had been shot. I didn't process the information. All I could think of was that we could get out of classes and I could get to my boyfriend in New York earlier. Even the funeral, that I watched at my aunt Chasia's house in Brooklyn, was only black and white. Sometimes we understand only in retrospect.

November 23, 2015

I read the nYTimes every day - if only to read what they write about Israel and the word-laundry everything goes through. A terrorist attack by three Arabs in which an Israeli man is killed can be a tiny item headed "Israeli and three Palestinians killed." Today an 18 year old soldier was shot, yesterday a 21 year old girl. Two girls, a 14 year old and 16 year old, attacked people on the street today with scissors, slicing up a few passersby. One girl was killed. Whatever the reason, this kind of violence can't be permitted. I wonder how the Times will cover it tomorrow.

I have to give a lecture tomorrow at Bar Ilan tomorrow about English writing in Israel. How do I do it - I can't concentrate on anything but grief.

To Karen Alkalay-Gut Diary

To Karen Alkalay-Gut home