The Daily Life of Kawther Salam

  ..: On the arrest of Sean O'Muireagain in Israel and Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz :..
July 16, 2003

"Paz" is the spanish word for "Peace".

While I am still working on translating the corruption file documents about the Civil Administration in Beit Il, on my way to spread the story, and while I am in Europe now, it had not occured to me to write an entry about Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz, the head of the Israeli Civil Administration.

I just tried to call the so-called Israeli Civil Administration in Biet Il to intervene for the life of my colleague, the Irish peace activist and journalist Sean O'Muireagain, who was arrested by the Israeli Security.

It's ridiculous to know that the life of human being is made valueless in the West Bank by the "civilized" of the IDF Commands. It is ridiculous to hear that others life is held hostage in jails just for being a Palestinian or a Palestinian-supporter, or for unclear,unknown and false rumors and  informations. It's ridiculous also to call the "Israeli Civil" administration and ask then for a help.

I told Mrs. Talia Someh, the spokeswoman of Brig. Gen. Paz that I was calling her from Vienna after I was advised by Mr. Peter Lerner, the spokesperson she replaced in Beit Il. I said that I am a Palestinian journalist who wants to bring to her attention some information about the Irish detainee Mr. Sean O'Muireagain, who was arrested by the IDF soldiers as a wanted person, hoping she would be able to pass on this information to the right persons for human consideration.

I said, "I know Mr. Sean himself, he is a journalist, a member of the National Union of Journalists from the U.K and a member of the Irish-Palestine Peace solidarity Campaign, he is not the person you are looking for, it's very important to pass this information to Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz for checking."

Mrs. Talia said this was not her business, she would not do that. I argued with Mrs Talia, and asked her what she would do if I told her that I had some information about a gunman? Would she do something then ? For sure she would not say this was not her business and she would even do impossible things to hear my information, but I was not asking her to do impossible things, I insisted that she should please tell tell boss about that, then ask anyone she wanted want about me, for instance General Tzadaka or her past colleague Mr. Peter Lerner. I told her that it was not fair or nice from her to refuse a request for humanitarian help while being engaged by her government to deal with journalists, and that I thought she was the right address to call.

Mrs. Talia said: "this is a security mission, I'm sure that your friend will be released if he is not a wanted person"

I asked: "When? After one day, week or month? How much is a human life worth in Israel? I'm not asking you to release him, all what I want from you is to pass this information to the right person in your government. She responded "I'm not allowed to call the security". I insisted "This is a civil issue and you are the right address to talk to about it."

I know many Palestinian prisoners don't know why they are jailed. Under the Israeli Military Law, it is legal to detain a Palestinian for up to six months without the person knowing why.

There were other foreigners who were jailed in Israel for no reason, or just because they were Palestinian-Supporters. A Canadian friend from the CPT (Christian Peace Maker Team) was jailed seventeen days without knowing why, and he was released still without knowing why.

Actually, there is no Civil Administration in the West Bank, there are no civil rights, all what we have a Military Humanitarian Disaster Administration in Beit Il. This all what I know about the Israeli Civil Administration mission in Beit Il now.

Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz - the Commander of Humanitarian Disasters in the West Bank.

Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz, before he became the head of the civil administration in Beit Il, had the credit for the plan code-named "Bronze", actually meaning "Humanitarian Disaster" which divided the West Bank and Gaza into 64 separate areas, each of which can be cut off in case of specific alert or in case the violence peaks in the specific areas. Alongside the stick, the siege, there would also be a carrot, loosening restrictions on these areas when violence had abated.

Mr. Sharon himself said that the siege was really "a brigadier's decision", it was an idea raised by the regional brigadier, Ilan Paz.

I don't know Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz personally, but at least I have heared about the terribly inhuman stories he caused in Bethlehem as he was the Colonel of the IDF command there. At that time I was interested in knowing more about this commander, who made the life of my people so  miserable.

His personal life, marriage, study, friends ... It is very important to understand the psychological background of others in order to understand their personality and how it reflects upon their behavior.

The interesting thing I found was not so much his marriage with his wife "Alona", the mother of his four children, but it was his oriental studies next to his Military Academy studies in Paris, and his childhood, the family that had raised him to be a soldier since his childhood, since their immigration from Europe to Israel.

When Paz was a Colonel, he was appointed to be the Commander of Ramallah brigade, he was also the Commander of "Binyamin" Brigade before he replaced Brig. General Dov Tzadaka as a brigade commander in Beit Il.

Before that, he replaced the general staff operational officer at the Central Command, Yitzhak Eitan, where I used to send my protest letters against the sick behavior of the IDF soldiers in Hebron.

As a Commander of the Air force, involved in military raids and killings in the West Bank, he was awarded different commendations during Al-Aqsa Intifada by the Chief of the IDF, General Saul Mofaz. At least two of these awards are for excelling Operational Units, which means that the Air Force is being awarded commendations for excelling in their killing raids in the West Bank.

Brig. Gen. Ilan Paz has since become the Head of Civil Administration in Beit Il, and after he received the files of the illegal outposts in the West Bank bearing the signature of the director of the Jerusalem District of the Israeli Electric Corporation, Yigal Ben Arye, he is working on granting these outposts permits in order for them to become legal.

It remains to be seen what Brig. Gen. Paz will be willing or able to do about the corruption which plagues the Civil Administration office in Beit Il, which has been left untouched by his predecessors in this office.

2000 - Kawther with a necklace she made of the empty shells spent in
one night by the machine gun emplacement  on her rooftop