I take the bus to work every morning. This morning I noticed an abnormally high presence of special public transport security officers. They patrol the bus stops, and sometimes stand in the entrance of the bus surveying all those who board. Often they will wish you boker tov (good morning in Hebrew) to see if you know Hebrew or if you speak it with a suspicious (i.e. Arabic) accent. Once I toyed with the idea of answering these guys with sabah al-nur (the Arabic response to "good morning"). Of course I did not do it. They have enough on their mind without having to deal with leitzanut (somebody clowning around).
Sometimes I wonder: When is the last time that one of the proponents of concessions to the Arabs (i.e. giving them land, sovereignty, and guns) took a bus? When Benny Begin was a minister in the government he took the bus to work. He was strongly opposed to the various agreements that were signed with the PLO. He was a man of principle who left the Likud after it became a hapless imitation of the Labor Party. I do not know of any other politician who uses/used public transportation.
When one boards a bus in Jerusalem he does not take it for granted that he will get off the bus alive. He could be the victim of an oversexed Islamofascist, eager to receive his reward for murdering infidels: 72 black-eyed virgins. Don't get me wrong; I do not live in fear. I live with the knowledge that nothing is to be taken for granted, even getting off the bus in one piece.
I've even seen the guards help the elderly.
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