Jerusalem 1

  • On 2014-02-13 ·

We first headed to the Dome of the Rock – one of the holiest sites in Islam.
We went to the gate for Muslims with Muaz, but Israeli soldiers didn’t let us Japanese through.

Instead we headed to the gate for tourists at the designated time.
A long queue awaited us. After waiting in the line for over an hour, we finally couldn’t get in.
No Dome of the Rock for us.

Next, the Wailing Wall – the infamous sacred place in Judaism.
This is ‘the only place in town’ where Muaz, who knows everthing about Jerusalem, can’t enter. We went through another security check at the gate for tourists. Because Muaz is Muslim, and Palestinian, he isn’t allowed inside.

Although it is a holy site, the area around the wall was noisier than I expected.
People praying, people taking pictures with big smiles, and people being moved to tears.

Some were dressed in Orthodox Jewish outfit, while many foreign visitors wore shorts and sandals.


In this area, now packed with tourists, there used to be houses of Palestinian families.
They were destroyed during the 1967 invasion. Later the area was paved, and today, the Jewish flags fly.

Afterwards, we joined again with Muaz for a coffee break.

Kaku Nagashima, our dramaturge asked him: “With Israeli soldiers standing everywhere holding guns, isn’t it dangerous?”
“—Not at all. The current Israeli arms, movement restrictions and strict security are all part of propaganda.”

In every step we take, the reality of this country’s occupation reveals.
A temporary ‘peace’ of some kind is preserved, it seems, in an extremely stressful way.