Facing Syria From an Israeli Bunker

It is late afternoon and I am standing on top of an active, although temporarily abandoned, Israeli bunker.

Through my Nikon lens I can clearly see a huge Syrian flag waving majestically in the wind. The flag is near, damn near, but why should it not be there – this is all Syria, according to the international law.

Where the flag is waving, it is Syria. Behind the flag, it is Syria; and Syria is where I am standing now, exposed and shivering in the chilly wind coming from the mountains.

It is quite a sight, all around me, quite a sight! Right ahead – destroyed and abandoned – are remains of the houses and buildings of the Syrian town of al- Qunaitra. On the left, the UN, or more precisely, the UNDOF base. There are white trucks and light armored vehicles behind their perimeter; almost like those outside Goma, East Kivu, in DR Congo.

But here, the UN base is sitting on what is called Demilitarized Zone, or DMZ. It is right between the ceasefire 1974 UNDOF lines Alfa and Bravo. Through the DMZ runs shiny and new Israeli barbed, high-voltage, stereotypical, and despite its glow – melancholy – wire fence...


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