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Aug 14, 2013

Photo-blog of the Grave protests

One of my kids goes to a school near the Goloventzitz site, where the protests have been taking place claiming the construction is being done on a site that contains ancient Jewish graves.

As I came within about 2 blocks of the site, on my way to pick my kid up from school, I could already hear the chanting of the protesters. I decided to go, with the kids that had come along with me, to see what was going on.

It was a fairly small amount of protesters - maybe 30 or 40, and probably an equal number of bystanders, many of whom were teenagers and kids. When I got there, a large group were slowly moving away from the site, but not really leaving. As well, there was also a group I could see at the entrance to the site - we did not get that close.

We kind of hung around and watched what was going on.. it was actually kind of boring. I asked some passing photographers/journalists if anything exciting had happened there and they said nothing exciting had happened.

Every now and often there would be a wave of chanting and screaming, and then running, but we did not see any violence as the cause of it.

Eventually we saw a police car drive down toward the site. A group of protesters surrounded the police car and were screaming "NAZI!!" over and over again. After a few minutes the police car backed out and we did not see it again. A few minutes after that Shmuel Pappenheim drove up in his MDA ambulance and they screamed "Sheigetz!" at him as he drove by...

surrounding the police car, screaming "Nazi!"

Eventually some of the protesters started a fire in the brush on the mountainside across the street from where we were standing.  As soon as I saw it go up I called the fire station. In the meantime, the fire was picking up speed quickly in the dry brush, but it then caused a nearby water pipe to split open. The pipe doused the area with a heavy spray of water. That seemed to keep the fire fairly small and under control, giving the firetruck time to get there and put it out without causing much damage or danger.. In the meantime we had to move around a bit as the wind kept changing and we kept needing to find better spots with less smoke..

you can see the split pipe dousing the fire with water

and then the firetruck arrived

it got pretty smokey

this guy came down from the construction site looking like he was an active protester

this meat delivery truck drove down near the area. I told him he can leave the meat right there and we will make our BBQ right away

the charred mountainside from the fires the day before

It was my baby's first hafganah, so to celebrate we bought artikim, ice pops, on the way home...

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