With the curfew, the only faces that greet visitors in Bethlehem are on posters plastered on shuttered storefronts. Many are portraits. Others show young men posing with guns or chains drawn around the posters' frames
These young men grew up playing in Bethlehem's streets but are now dead or in prison. Their faces gaze emptily from paper remembrances.
The flesh-and-blood residents are inside their homes this sunny Sunday. The cities have been closed and under curfew for days.
For Americans, "curfew" is the time our youth must be home at night. On the West Bank, the meaning is entirely different. Youth — and adults — are forbidden to leave their homes, night or day. Stores are closed, their great shutters pulled across the displays. Some days Israeli tanks patrol the deserted streets to ensure residents remain indoors.
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© 2016 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers