OK to pass through the checkpoint to fight a forest fire
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Israel’s refusal Tuesday to allow four Palestinian firefighters to cross the border from the West Bank to attend a ceremony for their role in putting out the country’s largest-ever fire has prompted a torrent of criticism.
Ahmed Tibi, an Arab member of Israel’s Knesset who helped organize the ceremony, said he was shocked when when he received a call from one of the firefighters, informing him that he and three others were being denied entry into Israel because of security concerns.
The ceremony was to salute 11 Palestinian firefighters who were among the many foreigners volunteering to help Israelis put out the worst fire in the nation’s history. The blaze killed 43 people this month.
The ceremony, which was being held in the northern town of Isifya, near where the fire began, was canceled in protest of Israel’s decision.
The Israeli government office that oversees the crossings with the Palestinian territories issued a statement expressing “regret” over the incident but asked that “a fuss” not be made.
For its part, the Palestinian Authority government was quick to lambaste Israel in a statement, asking why “the same Palestinian firemen who where permitted to enter Israel last week to put the fire out are not permitted to enter today to be honored?”
The egregious thugs in charge of the Israeli government are without peer since the days of South Africa’s apartheid dictatorship. They prattle about democracy and freedom. They open their arms to men willing to risk their lives battling the nation’s worst-ever forest fire.
The firefighters’ bravery is rewarded by being banned as security risk.
Cripes, I didn’t think it possible; but, the Israelis are more corrupt than Congress.