Friday, December 1

Terror busters mix motorcycles and swagger

Jerusalem - What looms suddenly in your rearview mirror and is past you in a streak on the stone slip of a darkened street is crime-fighting Israeli-style: two men, dressed in black, bent low on a dark motorcycle, the one behind with his automatic rifle angled off his back, the bike darting quick as a bat.

A moment later up ahead, near the Ben Yehuda shopping area in the center of Jerusalem, a man is up against a wall, dressed in clothes that resemble what a Hasidic Jew would wear, but in a faintly raffish way that doesn't quite square with the sober probity of Hasidism. The backseat rider from the motorcycle is frisking him; the driver, still atop his bike, is reaching for the man's identification.

The man is eventually let go but not before he is closely questioned. He has just had his first, and he hopes his last, brush with the motorcycle unit of Yasam, an elite police unit.

Read more.

Jerusalem Graffiti (Photo)

"If I Forget Thee, Oh Jerusalem" (Photo: Dave Bender)

Photograph of a wall across the street from the Mahane Yehuda open-air market (The usual Friday morning shopping and a fast riser in the chic' midmorning cafe' hangout of many, many Jerusalemites).

And you'd never - and I mean never - imagine who you might run into shopping in the bustling, noisy, colorful alleyways.

More photos of the market and street buskers area are here.

I filmed this clip some time back (apologies for the slight blurriness), but the same guy is still there, same crowds, too - but today he was on the other side of the street, dressed all in white.

Shabbat Shalom and have a great weekend.


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