web analytics
September 15, 2014 / 20 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



Security, Then, Now, Here, There

How shocking now to think that two of my sons are older than that young man was then...
Security guard checking a man for weapons and explosives before letting him enter the Central Bus Station in Tel-Aviv.

Security guard checking a man for weapons and explosives before letting him enter the Central Bus Station in Tel-Aviv.
Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/Flash90

This one is dedicated to my mother – who reminded me…

When I was 16 years old, two major things happened in my life. My grandfather passed away suddenly, without warning. One day he was there giving me a birthday present and talking about what I learned in Hebrew school; the next he was gone. He’d promised to take me to Israel; it was something we talked about and I assumed in those early days of grief, that my dream and that promise, had died with him.

My mother must have known – certainly understood the depths of what I was feeling, and arranged for me to spend the summer in Israel. It was, for all practical purposes, my first time in Israel. My parents took me to the airport – my mother helped me pack, my father bought me a camera. And as  I was about to approach the check-in counter, I encountered my first experience with Israeli security.

The young man…how shocking now to think that two of my sons are older than that young man was then – questioned me. I was completely, entirely, totally intimidated.

Did anyone hand you anything? No, I said, after carefully thinking through what I had in my suitcase.

Did you pack your bag yourself? Well, my mother helped, I answered slowly again.

Were your bags with you the whole time? I had to think – where had I been with them, what had I done. I was so nervous…Think…think…no, they were with me, I answered.

My mother called me as I was waiting to check in a few days ago at Ben Gurion on my way through Rome to London to Manchester on a business trip. She said she always remembers that first security guard and how cute he was and his blue eyes and Israeli accent. He had blue eyes? I didn’t remember that. All I remember was being terrified that perhaps I wouldn’t answer correctly and they wouldn’t let me on the plane.

This time, so many years later, I waited in line before the large machines. The women in front of me were Russians, a mother and daughter. One was traveling back to Russia; the other was going to Germany. The security officer asked them questions that took a few minutes.

When my turn came, she took my Israeli passport; asked me where I was going and when I’d be back – and passed me through. Everyone else had loaded their luggage into the machine to have them x-rayed. I can’t lift my bags – my doctor and my husband warned me. Ask for help, they told me. DO NOT LIFT YOUR SUITCASE!

I looked around and another security officer came over and said – go over there. Over there, was through the doors without having my bags checked. Over there?

Yes, said the man in Hebrew – you’re done.

Really? I asked.

Yup – pays to be an Israeli in Israel, I thought. Pays not to be suspicious and yes, ethnic profiling works. No one seriously thinks I would be blowing up a plane and so I don’t have to be searched – good for me and good for all the people behind me.

Ethnic profiling is alive and well – and logical – in Israel. It lets security concentrate on the real dangers instead of wasting time on those who pose no threat. I accept it in my life and yes, I’m grateful for it.

And then I got to Rome and as we came off the plane – wanted just to make my connection to London, I had to pass through security. The check was similar to the one in Israel (except in Rome they didn’t ask me to open my laptop computer).  The Israelis on the line coming off the plane were stoic but I have to admit I was confused. Could you tell me what exactly I was supposed to have picked up that could pose a security threat from the time I passed Israeli security, boarded the plane, got off the plane and walked here? It makes no sense…but never mind.

And then I got to England – go on, tell me they don’t do ethnic profiling here in England. It’s a lie. They do. I arrived and walked along the path following “All other passports.” I am neither UK or EU – and so I took myself into the line with hundreds of Indian passengers, Korean passengers and a mixture of Muslim passengers from unknown countries (identified only by their dress).

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Security, Then, Now, Here, There”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Ramallah-based Fatah leader and Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman  Mahmoud Abbas still leads the faltering Palestinian Authority "unity government," which includes Gaza's ruling Hamas terrorist organization.
Abbas to Request France Recognize PA State
Latest Blogs Stories
pashkevil WAR

Pashkevil: “Come out today and battle the Zionist Amalek and all the traitors in Nahal Haredi…”

Jo-map

Jordan: Only M.E. country with no historical basis and ruled by occupiers placed by European powers.

Doug Goldstein

Why is an IRA a worthwhile account for retirement? And how can you use it to the best advantage?

Questions-Answers-logo

Like the fighter pilot’s letter, I wonder if certain units are simply too sensitive to allow certain leftwingers to serve in, and to entrust in their hands the security of our country and our lives.

There is only one thing more tragic than experiencing a terror attack, and that is allowing those who attacked you to do it again!

Smuggling Gazans into Europe is cheaper than fighting with Gaza, and then rebuilding all the destruction.

This week’s parsha offers a new covenant; a covenant that speaks to national life unlike any other

Why did I feel so uncomfortable around people with special needs? It’s not like they’re contagious.

The US government ignores Saudi policies, focusing narrowly on Saudi oil and military cooperation.

Imagine if the Arabs would not have attacked Israel in ’48, or any other year…

How do you reach the top of your profession, and are you always aware of your own talents?

Rabbi Fink: “There are many ‘true believers who can’t even be in the presence of Orthodox Judaism.”

People act not because they think it’s right; they do what they do because it’s what they want to do

During the years of attacks on Gush Katif communities no residents either wished to leave or left.

Israel far outranks every country in the MENA region in the freedoms of press, speech and assembly.

” the Americans mistakenly led Israel to believe that Hamas accepted an unconditional 72-hour cease-fire “

More Articles from Paula Stern
candles on tracks

I love that most of my kids don’t actually read this blog – it gives me a freedom.

KL Majdanek. Mglisty paŸdziernikowy poranek 2008

The smell may be gone, but the air remains poisoned by the hatred.

My son continues to move slowly towards the army while working to complete his final year in high school.

It’s a strange feeling to known that a missile is flying towards your country and there is nothing you can do about it.

I’ll start by explaining that in Israel, a common phrase is “yehiye b’seder” – it will be okay.

At one point the Dr. asked me if I was famous because of the blog…

There are ashes that remain in the ovens, ashes piled into a mountain in Maidanek.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/security-then-now-here-there/2013/06/12/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: