Diary of an American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land (Excerpt 27)

boot-stepping-on-faceThe American dude was pissed.

His face darkened, his body language was confrontational, and I’m pretty sure his aura was a deadly shade of black & blue…

Another of the Israelis chimed in calmly, as if nothing was amiss, nobody’s American blood was boiling, no Israeli was about to get his teeth smashed in. Just a friendly group of travelers, shooting the international sh*t.

When you crash a bee’s nest, and destroy the bees to get to their honey,” this Israeli began patiently. “Those bees will fill with hatred for you. They will buzz to their children the stories of how you demolished their homes, their families, their lives, their country. And those children will come. They will come to avenge their ancestors. Generation after generation. Because you continue to crash their nests.”

Another of the Israelis looked right at us Americans. “September 11th will happen again,” he said. “It will happen to you, and it will happen to us. Because our countries think ‘why’ doesn’t matter.

The Brits, the couple from Norway, and the other Israelis nodded in silent agreement. I looked around, maybe hoping for some kind of support-for-America intervention from any of the dozens of other foreigners within earshot, but the expressions I saw on most of their faces was chilling.

They looked…I don’t know…like they were all thinking, “See what happens when you crush bees for their honey?

That rocked me.

The American guy glared at the group of Israelis and spat, “That you can say that stuff about your own country is pretty f**ked up, dude.

You think so?” one of the Israelis raised his eyebrows. “I think it’s honest. If I become president one day, that honesty may save my country. And yours.”

Leave my country out of it,” the American guy snapped.

At this, all the Israelis laughed. “Do you not know how closely allied your country is with ours? We are nest-crashing brothers, my friend. Our enemies are your enemies. We share blood. The blood of Arabs.” 

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yankees-go-home-grafitti

2003 Barcelona, Spain
Yankees Go Home. Stop the War. Bush, Aznar, Sharon, Berlusconi. Terroristes.” (Terrorists)

Bush: former U.S. President
Aznar: former Prime Minister of Spain & active supporter of U.S. and Israel invasions on Arab countries
Sharon: former commander in the Israeli Army & former Prime Minister of Israel
Berlusconi: former Prime Minister of Italy & active supporter of U.S. & Israeli invasions on Arab countries

Americans are called “Yanquis” (Yankees) throughout Spanish-speaking countries, but versions of this “Yankees Go Home” protest slogan can be found around the world.

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Then, one of the Israelis said something I will never forget.

We all serve in our military. Because we must,” this Israeli said, holding his palms out. “We have bees’ blood on our hands. We see the hatred for us in the eyes of the bees we don’t kill. We know their children will be coming to kill our children after we die of old age.”

He looked at us, and though my initial response was anger, I had to admit that his next questions were asked with genuine curiosity. I don’t remember there being even a shred of animosity or contempt.

He was really trying to fathom our American mind.

Do you serve in your military?” he asked. “Do you crash nests for your country? Do you see the death of your children in the eyes of crushed bees? Or do you see only foreign hotels, where even crushed bees smile for tyrants and their dollars?

What happened next involved shouting, shoving & airport security…

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13 thoughts on “Diary of an American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land (Excerpt 27)

  1. Pingback: Abuse on Palestinians Not Limited to West Bank | Sylver Blaque

  2. Pingback: Diary of an American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land (Excerpt 29) | Sylver Blaque

  3. Pingback: Diary of an American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land (Excerpt 28) | Sylver Blaque

  4. I love this. I love it because it is a great illustration that you can love your country, and criticize it at the same time. I hate the accusations of treason that get lobbed about whenever there is an opportunity for critical discussion.

    • Thank you, Julia. You & I feel the same way about this, which is why I’m posting this story here. What kind of democracy is it that labels honest examination of one’s own culture an unpatriotic act? I really appreciate your comment. It’s very encouraging to know there are others out there who feel as strongly as I do about this. 🙂

  5. ” Or do you see only foreign hotels, where even crushed bees smile for tyrants and their dollars?“

    chilling. And somehow, because this is a metaphor, it’s more powerful.

  6. Raw honesty!!! Love it!
    Israelis are not too popular (understatement!) in Greece either.
    The issue of Responsibility of Peoples for their governments’ actions and for their participation, or tolerance, or unwillingness to find out for themselves / turning a blind eye is quite complicated, yet too simple!
    And, I insist, Greeks were not always noble, white, immaculate pigeons — fortunately, we almost never had too much power as a State, or we would find ourselves guilty of many crimes too. Is it the nature of man? Is it crowd psychology? F***, I don’t know…

    • Thanx, Eleni! Glad to hear from you. I absolutely agree with you about the Responsibility of Peoples for the actions of their government. There is no denying we are guilty of turning a blind eye, even when knowledge presents itself. But I’m not willing to do that anymore. I’m done with silent complicity. Need my beauty sleep & need to be able to face my mirror in the mornings.

      I don’t think there’s a nation on the planet that can claim “immaculate pigeon”-ness (love this term!). I guess, it’s like you say, the nature of man – but only some. In spite of it all, I still believe in the goodness of man, too…

    • Lol, thank you, George. As controversial, and therefore scary, as it is to share these stories, I will “keep it coming” because I really believe we need to know these things that aren’t being said here…

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