Beyond the laptop

Thanks for all the interest, humor and advice regarding my laptop craziness.

First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”

Though a visual and poignant incident that captures a lot of sentiment and fault with Israeli policies and practices, unfortunately there are many more issues to get riled over. Let’s redirect the outrage over the laptop and focus on more serious grievances?

I’m busy at work, but this just caught my eye:

That said, obviously there is interest in this incident. The Israeli security’s decision to shoot my laptop was nonsensical on multiple levels–unprovoked, unduly aggressive, a waste of government funds, etc

So to answer a FAQ:

Compensation? The manager on duty at the Israeli border gave me a form with phone numbers and an addresses of Israeli government offices in cities throughout Israel.

He promised I could go to any office the next day and they would help me get another laptop.

I was under the impression they would directly purchase from a local Apple store.

Pshh…silly me.

After spending most of a day calling the number with no response, and trying to locate a building Israelis I encountered didn’t know the location of, I was lucky enough to connect with a social worker at the tourism ministry.  With his guidance,  I was able to meet with an Israeli government employee the next day.

She passed me on to another man who took pictures of my laptop and said the process I was to go through was the same as any Israeli who had property damaged by military or “terrorist” acts.

They told me I can expect compensation (deliverable to an Israeli bank account only) in about a month. Though I asked to see the report– i.e. how much they’re planning to compensate me, so far, no news.

Let the countdown begin….??

139 thoughts on “Beyond the laptop

  1. “First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”” And Palestinians blow themselves up in Israeli cafes and buses. And launch rockets targeting Israeli cities and settlements. Frankly they should never even have let you enter their country. You are obviously very biased and anti-Israeli. Liv (who is not Israeli, not Jewish), Australia

  2. I’m sorry to say, but I found your story funny. I have visited Israel on several occasions and have witnessed first hand the incompetence and (rightful) paranoia of the police.

    I know a few people who have had their laptops, suitcases etc. riddled with bullets. Standard procedure for any package left unattended.

    Basically what happened was like this: The border security tells you to leave your stuff and come with them. Someone along the line forgets to pick up your stuff in time. Before you can say ‘boo’ an innocent Israeli sees the unattended laptop and flashes back to several incidents in which a terrorist set off a bomb in exactly this manner. He calls the cops. Cops come and “defuse” the laptop.

    Happens about once a day in any given city in Israel. I think more Israelis lose their laptops every year from bomb squads defusing “haifetz hashudim” (suspicious packages) than all the malware in the world put together.

  3. i commented naively in the previous post expressing my opinion that losing a laptop is better than losing people to terrorists. then i read this “First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”. now it see who i am talking to here. i have no evidence of course, but i suspect there were good reasons to be cautious about this person.

  4. If Israeli policy is to shoot suspected explosive devices (although perhaps they thought it was an illegal ant-farm), I sure hope they aren’t advising U.S. troops. I mean there’s dumb and there’s dumb! SHOOT TEH BOMB! SHOOT TEH BOMB!

  5. Just be glad you weren’t entering Palestine, your laptop would either be blown up or you would have been shot. Not making excuses for the Israelies, just saying it could have been worse.

  6. haha let it begin, i’ read about your story which is hard to imagen unless if you are a dumb isralian kid promised to hold the gun in he’s 18 years old birthday and i really feel sory about it.

    my brother and spanish friend just came from egypt last week and they told me about the 2 hours quastions, and to it’s just the most normal act for israli securty around this evil conutry, like to stop anyone who just looks arab and qustion him where you came from (from here asshole!). and they should give you the best macbook becuse there is nothing can cove you experience in that night.

  7. as an israeli im truely sorry for your computer lost but your reaction was unnececery,we are not murderers,we never shoot any kid or child and it is very sad that you where brainwashed by the arab press,the fact that you had a Natzi simbole probebly “jumped a fuse” in one of the soldiers head,you got to understand than anti-jews and neo-natzis simbols are sometimes drive us crazy,i personally lost 80% of my family in world war 2 in the forests of Romania,my family where hanged and burn including little children,only my grandfather survived,so i can understand in some way the anger of the soldiers when they found out that you have anti-jew or pro Natzi name is shlomy and im a d.j and a radio producer,i would like to give you a tour for free and show you a diffrent israel

    • israeli Government is on welfare from America, You could argue that they owe you a Laptop on the Fact you probally already paid for one ( if you pay taxes ) With out American money israel would be crushed in 3 years top by the surrounding countries. It the saddest part about being an American, that we support this fake country that was givin to them by great britian and claims god gave them the land…. like he just jumps int real estate its only a matter of time for ur pathetic race gets stomped on again… I would be alot less vigil if i don’t spend about $600 a year out my hard earned money (taxes) on this bullshit If your country was self suffiecent I would atleast give you some respect but its sad very very sad. the Only reason were fighting in the middle east and that the Muslim world hates the US is our support of israel

  8. Hi Lil,
    This Blog is informative..
    When I read other people’s posting it was reassuring to find out that anti-Semite is till very ubiquitous. Some of the responds were so violence – they leave me no options but arm myself and my country to the teeth to defend against nations/people who think we could be exterminate..

  9. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”

    what a childish comment. obviously someone that damages your laptop is the worst person alive.

    an outstanding review of the political situation in the middle east through the eyes of a poor mac-book. You are well on your way to winning a journalism award for this masterpiece.

    or is it just a general whine about your laptop , if so just submit a compensation request to the proper authorities , the same way that everybody does when their stuff gets damaged , when crossing a border be it in Europe , US , or Middle east.

    the fact that you have an online blog does not mean that you have to use it for your own petty agenda. Encouraging hate just so you can get paid.

  10. Classy, Israel. Let’s further the image of how organized, civilized, and legitimate your government is.

    I hope they reimburse you. I would take this to the news otherwise.

  11. As a Mac User + Israeli i’m quite sad for the killed Mac and the idiotic idea to kill a laptop. But it seems like the killer didn’t shoot the brain so i hope your next Israeli founded laptop will continue to carry the thoughts of your old beloved one 🙂

  12. Hi Lilly,

    I understand your frustration. But why do you have to channel your frustration into aggressiveness and to lies? In this way you are proving that aggressiveness is a good thing.

    First to the incident itself:
    If you knew how many terror attacks were on Israeli policemen in transit points, sometime by young women, you would at least understand that the context of shooting your notebook was that of fear of a terrorist bomb. If they would want to prevent you from transferring or keeping unwanted material, they would just confiscate this computer in the name of state security, don’t you agree? Nothing is simpler. No, I don’t have right now links to the many terror attack like I described, but you can believe me, the Arabs use anything to hide a terror attack: ambulances, “pregnant” women, children with bombs, young “innocent” women, Western people convinced to act as terrorists (like this British who killed so many children in Jerusalem) etc.

    And now to the main point:
    This continuous lie about Israeli army shooting at unarmed children is no more than a lie, one of the lies of the “Industry of Lies” as it is known among the best contemporary thinkers. The lies we witness include not only this lie about killing children, but other, more severe lies. It is an endless stream of lies that have no connection with reality, but only with the possibility to activate the imagination of people like you.

    You might be naive and therefore a victim of cooperation with the Industry of Lies, but if you do not want to find yourself 20 years from now feeling a complete idiot, just like those communists who supported Staline’s USSR with a lot of passion and anger (like I see in your case), then maybe you would like to learn a bit more before contributing to the Industry of Lies.

    What do I mean by contributing? I mean not only to the fact that you repeat a lie and thus help it becomes a “truth”, but that you are participating in the killing of children. I will try to explain this shocking statement.

    Hamas is shooting rockets and exploding in buses full of Israeli children in order to attract Israeli army to fight in the Arab cities and villages. This way, while fighting from schools, from homes with families, from mosques, they deliberately create innocent victims. If you have the time to read the UN definition for war crimes, you will find what Hamas is doing is a definitive war crime. You will NOT find Israel there, however surprisingly it might be to you, but that is a different story.

    Here is just something to make you see what really happened in Gaza (about 1200 dead, of which only about 150 are not terrorists):

    The truth about Gaza:

    Back to our point: Hamas is creating casualties so as to make false headlines as if Israel is killing children with no distinction. Once you accept this lie, and protest against this “crime”, you are closing the circle and let Hamas get what they want: propaganda against Israel. In this way you are contributing to the killing of more children, since Hamas will provoke Israel over and over again until it will be obliged to retaliate against this terror, thus causing some casualties. You will protest, and Hamas will continue its way up thanks to the pile of innocent bodies it creates, thank to people like you, who ‘I believe) innocently contributing to the Industry of Lies and Death.

    Of course, if you are one of these persons who have turned their ‘leftish’ agenda into a cult, a kind of religion, then it is a lost case. But if not, please take the time to read some links that might turn whatever you think you know up-side-down:

    This is the truth about Gaza:

    One example for a lie about the “Palestinians” in Israel – Here you can find stuff about empty “Palestine”:

    About the true criminals:
    And this one (attention – this is not easy to see):

    About “war crimes”:

    And there are many more. You can find some truth here:

  13. Hi,
    I know it might not give you any comfort, but at least, I think you should know that there are dozens of thousands Israeli Jews (like me) who suffer, on a daily basis, the Israeli militant policy which is used, in recent years, and in particular, since the bombing of Gaza and the latest elections, for the purpose of political repression. Not surprisingly that I am using Tor for this post- I was involved in the organization of the big demonstration against the war, that took place (the demonstration, not the war… ) in Tel Aviv and Jafa. In this demonstration, as our videos can show, more than 10000 Israelis, both Jews and Arabs, marched hand in hand just to learn that the neither the Israeli, nor the international media gave it any coverage (the former- not to shake the fake attitude of unity, the latter- not to disturb the image of Israeli jews as bunch of fanatics). Many of us were harassed, following the demo. The same destiny suffer any activist for the right of foreign workers, African refugees, or any participant of the demonstration against the wall, every friday. They also shoot us- left wing Jewish activists, if you thought it might be racist ;>)
    Last friday there was a big article about the harassment of social activists by the new Israeli dictatorship. This is not Jews against Arabs, non-Jews, etc- this is merely another instance of the new coalition of fascists nationalists and ultra religious fundamentalists, against conscious citizens, or just people who want to live their lives.

  14. Sorry for your ordeal.

    Can you please clarify how the shooting happened? Was the laptop on the desk and an officer shot through it? Was it in a bag? Did you by any chance left unattended bags?

    In general, there’s a zero tolerance policy in Israel towards unattended bags – it can be just a minute until the special unit arrives and a robot shoots into a bag to provoke a controlled explosion.

  15. There fact that you agree to this:
    “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”
    Just shows that you are completely biased and totally unaware and uneducated on the REAL facts of the israeli-arab conflict.
    As an observer(i am guessing you are not an active party in the conflict) you should try and learn the truth about both sides and not just the “facts” you are being fed with by obviously biased parties.

    I’m surprised that an intelligent woman like you goes as low as to agree to something like that.
    Israel is not a perfect country and probably never will be, but compared to other countries i think we are doing OK. Every country in the world has its conflicts and can be blamed of shooting and killing innocents (US and Europe in Afghanistan and Iraq, Russians in Chechnya) and the weaker side will always try to use his loss to gain worldwide recognition for “War crimes” committed against him.
    Israel is a small country surrounded by enemies which more than once tried to eliminate out presence by means of FORCE. Israel has always been on the offensive and somehow still everyone blames it.
    i was once told that If you pick a fight with someone smaller than you and still get your a** kicked don’t go crying to your mother.
    The world can’t expect us to sit quietly while rockets are flying above our heads.
    The fact is (and i know this from reliable sources) The Palestinians make cynical use of civil facilities (hospitals, schools, kindergartens etc.) as rocket launching facilities, hoping that we will not retaliate.
    It is sad that the civilians in those areas don’t care enough for their own lives to take action and make sure they don’t shoot from those facilities.

    Regarding the laptop, bureaucracy is a pain here (and everywhere else for that matter). it takes time to process requests, it’s not like there is someone waiting there for you with cash after shooting your laptop. and it’s not like they shoot laptops everyday (yeah yeah i know you think they do, but really.. they don’t).
    And I do hope you will get your money.

    On a different note, i hope you are having a good time here, and wish you all the best.

  16. I hope you’ll get the money, sounds annoying this bureaucracy. most annoying that they would pay only to Israeli bank account. Knowing the Israeli bureaucracy, recently I was thinking about returning to live in Israel after 7 years and even something they encourage like the return of Jewish to Israel, when you try to phone and ask questions they’re lame.
    if you got relatives in Israel try to get the money to their bank account.

  17. Congrats for the anti-semitism. I hope one day you’ll realize how ridiculous that sentence you have agreed with is. I just can’t take you seriously at the moment.
    When you’ll get older, smarter, more mature, I will be glad to have a serious conversation with you. And sorry about your laptop.

  18. ““These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?””

    I know that you are outraged, laptop shoot and all… but can you back this statment with, let’s say… facts?

    actually, the situation here is relatively calm now, apart for a shooting of an innocent laptop every now and then – you don’t hear much about israeli incursions into gaza, anymore (hmm.. why is that?). the west bank is also relatively calm, with most of the anti-israeli-establishment sentiment coming from jewish settlers…

    As to you visiting the area… let me say that I’m not sure what this area needs is yet another demagog, as I think we already have an ample supply of demagogs, from both sides already dehumanizing each other, as it is.

    regarding the laptop reimbursement thing – the israeli response in the local media claimed that you should contact the airport authority. maybe you can get someone there to help you:

    I’m sure there are many israeli people who have already contacted you, but if you are in need of further assistant regarding this, don’t hesitate to send me an email.

    I hope enjoy you stay.

  19. Oh, Come-on!
    “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children”???
    Personally i haven’t shot anyone for at least a week!
    But seriously, you’re an american. How would you feel if i said something of a like : “Why do you car, those american animals massacre whole families in Iraq and Afganistan”?
    Don’t forget that many of those who criticize Israel ignore much more basic and severe violation of human rights that happen in their own countries, be it Iran, Egypt or Syria.
    If you really want to know about israelis – please, ask me. But don’t give a hand to spreading unbased hatred.


    • Don’t take a comment about the autorities personally. I, for one, don’t judge an entire people by their authorities, as usually many disagree with said authroities. If I strongly dislike the government of Iran, does that mean I have samething against the Iranian people? Of course not.

      I’ll illustrate your comment about critisizing Israel by using a comparison: does the fact that some people get murdered mean we sholdn’t stop others from hitting someone, just because murder is worse?

      (And please, next time, use proper spelling and grammar.)

      • Your reply doesn’t seem to contradict what the person you are replying to is saying. Both of you are saying that it is wrong to generalize a group of people, as Lily had (though likely satirically). Hence there is nothing to argue about.

        And about your request to “use proper spelling and grammar”, for real? It’s just a comment on a personal blog, not to mention one by a non-native English speaker. It’s enough to get the point across clearly. Welcome to the Internet. If you want I could point out spelling and grammar mistakes in your comment too.

    • I’m sorry, but human-rights violations are not possible to quantify as to measure who has done most harm. Either it is a violation or it isn’t. Be it american, british, norwegian or danish troops – if they violate human rights it’s wrong and must stop, but it’s the same for Israel too! Why don’t people understand that? What Caligula, Pol Pot or Pinochet did was wrong, regardless of how many humans were killed!

      “The cold war” between USSR and USA shows us that sustainable peace can only be achieved if one party decides to stop. Then the other part will follow suit. Israel (and every other “chosen”, aggressive tribe in the world) only need to make the choice!

      In other parts of the world this has been and is the common sense – even among small schoolchildren!

      Anyone has the right to criticize anyone else if they are violating any human right; freedom of speech, freedom of religion – indeed freedom from religion, freedom to live, right to emloyment, food, education, fresh water etc. It really doesn’t matter who is doing what to whom. They must stop it anyway! And shooting her laptop must also be regarded as a violation of Lily Sussman’s human rights. Her right not to live in fear of persecution because of birth, opinions or religion.

      How can educated, well fed adults still be heard talking in the language of the playground; “U hit me with a stick, so I hit u with a larger stick”. Come on! You surely can’t hink this is a good thing?

      “What all agree upon is probably right; what no two agree in most probably is wrong.”
      – Thomas Jefferson (1817)

  20. Wow, i thought it was just me!!
    i had the same problem,aswell distroyed all my uni info!!.
    i still have my destroyed laptop at home! –
    i was shocked!!
    even worse no compensation!!!

  21. So your laptop got shot at. Now move on and get a life. Back up your data always. Stop all the broohahaha. Israelis don’t just shoot “innocent” civilians – they are human being too, but they take their security very seriously. Get a life.

  22. Does that mean you have to open up an Israeli bank abount? Woah, that is kinda unfair for tourists. You should charge them for the amount of time your staying there waiting for your laptop to return in your hands.

    I still don’t get why they would “shoot” a laptop, lets say it “really” had explosives. Would shooting it really diffuse the explosives. How dumb are these kiddy soldiers seriously.

    • Um, just a thought, but: perhaps they were just sending a message to her because they saw the Egyptian stamps and the “fuck” “Star of David” photo and were just being dicks?

  23. Lily,

    Sorry, but judging from your last post you fit a certain profile– as in gullible, probably has a boyfriend in Cairo she’s not talking about, most likely left her bags unattended in a public spot in countries/areas that are not friendly to Israel. Don’t know if that’s true or not, but Israel’s a country at war. People are dying in Israel, and this rarely gets publicized in any detail.

    If I were in the IDF, I’d probably shoot your luggage too. I don’t think you realize that civilians are being killed on the Israeli side as well. Buses full of children and the elderly in Haifa. A jointly owned restaurant with GENERATIONS of Arabs and Jews working together blown up– with all patrons and workers inside. You lost a laptop. You probably WON’T be compensated without some major footwork on your side.

    I don’t think you understand, Israel is at war. Every attempt at peace has been met with violence. Did you forget that Israel unilaterally left the Gaza strip with no preconditions in 2005? They dismantled settlements that had been there for decades with risk of personal from angry settlers that felt betrayed. They even left millions of dollars worth of farm and irrigation equipment so they could keep the land productive. You know how they were thanked? Rocket attacks and kidnappings. It made the doves in Israel look like complete fools and hence you get hardliner politicians like Netanyahu in power. Back and forth,it seems neither side (of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict) is ready for peace when the other has had enough.

    Look, it’s great that you want to travel around the Mideast and make sense of things and understand the issues on a personal level, but travel with an open mind, and know that things are not so black and white as you seem to think. You seem to have made up your mind– Israel and Israeli soldiers = evil/ Hamas and Hezbollah = freedom fighters a la Che Guevara. And yet, with so many things wrong in Israel, they still have freedom of the press, and true representation of minority voices, and a viable (if somewhat chaotic) democracy. Face facts: All of the Middle East was arbitrarily carved up by colonial powers, not just Israel. However, these countries are a reality and can’t be eradicated or redrawn yet again. Use your time there to get some insight on what the commonalities of all people are, and how these commonalities can draw together a lasting peace in that region.

  24. here’s what probably happened with your laptop. at the border they use a chemical kit to detect explosives or people/things that have been in contact with explosives. your laptop probably reacted positively to the kit (which doesn’t necessarily mean you were anywhere near explosives, it may react positively to other things as well). security procedures at the border require the object be put in a “bomb pit” and then it’s shot in an attempt to trigger the explosives.

    your statement about “unprovoked, unduly aggressive, a waste of government funds…” just goes you show you have lived a sheltered life, not having to deal with or even know about such things as i mentioned about.

    i had a good laugh reading the comments to your previous posts by the haters and generally clueless. i hope this helps clear things up, although i doubt that from the general tone of the last couple of posts and the sort of comments you tolerate, not to mention agree with.


  25. Hmmm…

    -hand drawn map of downtown Jerusalem
    -Arabic stickers on laptop
    -“F**k Star of David” pic on phone
    -passport stamps from Arab countries
    -various Arab publications
    -photos condemning Israeli military action in Gaza

    Why didn’t she just tape road flares to your chest? Of course the guard got suspicious and called for the bomb squad. Stupid hippie…

  26. Sorry you had to go through this, Lily. And so glad your hard-drive was safe even though I see the laptop was shot in different spots while *closed* (that’s 6 holes). You’re lucky!

    What really amazes me though is their response that you have to go through the same process a citizen goes through when they have “property damaged by military or “terrorist” acts.” It makes no sense to me unless they’re admitting what they did was indeed a “terrorist act.” (or perhaps a war on your Apple? =) )

    I don’t want you to mess up your vacation, but I’d definitely ask for more than just the laptop cost.

    Hope you’re enjoying Cairo!

  27. What does a shot laptop have to do with “… shooting every day at unarmed people, even children …”?
    I agree the laptop incident is crazy, but let’s not BLOW it out of proportion ( well, I’m actually not surprised, knowing how these guys at Hamas BLOW up innocent Israeli children … you get the point).

    I know many Jewish Israeli people who had their bag shot just because they left it unwatched for a couple of minutes. Yes, this is the unfortunate reality that Israelis live in, where Palestinian terrorist would do anything (such as put bombs cowardly hidden in laptops) to intentionally hurt innocent civilians. These are precaution measures intended to prevent loss of innocent lives (yes, sometimes at the cost of a cherished laptop because of a possibly careless border officer).

    And as for those “unarmed people being shot everyday” – would you care to give some examples? maybe of one shot yesterday? or the day before? you know what, let’s settle for the past week?

    Stop using slogans and be faithful to the reality. The reality is that Israel is a place of conflict. In conflict innocent people do get hurt – and that happens on BOTH sides.
    Whereas on the Israeli side the hurting of innocent is a side effect of fighting terrorism, the Hamas does so intentionally.

  28. I’m sure it would be worth while contacting a israeli lawyer as to the legallity of them filling your laptop full of holes (was there any reason for them to think it was a explosive device? or was is just bored guards being gung-ho? and I’m sure shooting things three times isn’t a standard explosive disposal tecnique.), and also about making sure you get fair compensation for the laptop and the duress…

  29. However you feel about Israel, its history, and current policies, they have perfected the art of the government bureaucracy.

    Obviously, you and no one else are to blame for traveling with important data on your laptop and not having a backup. While the odds of your laptop getting shot are slim, no matter where you’re traveling there’s always the chance of your laptop getting dropped, smashed, soaked, or even stolen. All of those would result in lost data, and regular backups protects against all of them. (And let’s face it, no amount of financial compensation can make up for lost data.)

    As for their decision to shoot the laptop, if they had reason to believe that it might contain explosives, the standard operating procedure would be to shoot it from a safe distance.

    Given your travels, is there any possibility that their swabs might have found explosives residue on any of your belongings? That would just about guarantee that they would tear apart everything you’ve got on you. I’ve known people who work in demolitions who had separate laptops they used when traveling, so as not to set off the detectors, since any laptop that had been at a work site would have residue all over it.

  30. hi,

    fristly if i present myself ; im moroccan student in france , few minites ago i heard about your story from israeli newspaper haaretz 🙂 im sad for your apple 😦

    but the funny one i have one too macbook pro but without arabic keyboard (99% of moroccan don’t use arabic keyboard only french one)

    you know a bout 900 000 of israeli are moroccan decent , some of them have dual citizenchip the funny one tzipi livni face a trial in uk if she come but she was 3 weeks ago in morocco 🙂 we are welcoming country

    i’ve seen some of your photo of egypt , syria , it’s a little bit typicall , if you travel to arab countries in north africa suh tunisia morocco you will find a lot of difference between arab countries ( mentality , social , life and also approch of religion )

    but if ask you you’re a student ? in which fields ?
    ps: sorry if wrote wrong my second language is french not english

    thank you

    • Hi, i’m from Israel and my both parents came here back in the 50’s, from Casablanca.
      and they already visited Morocco.

      great county, great ppl.

      wishing you luck

      • so i can say you’re moroccan too 🙂 do your parents speek moroccan darija 🙂

        there are a lot of things linked to jewish heritage here in morocco, in fes , zagoura , meknes , tetouan … and also a small city of ouazzane a lot of jewish come from outside for visiting … , i have some friends who have family in israel in spite of bad politics i hope that things will change in the region


  31. Just regarding your reply: “First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?””
    May be the was a reason to suspect you in anti-Israeli activity? 😉
    After two British students blew couple years ago I’m not surprised about your blown laptop.
    Anyway if you don’t respect this country – leave it, why not just go straight to west bank and Gaza?

  32. Just a suggestion, go to lawyer company and make “ipui koah”, it will not cost you much, then the lawyer can take care of this and send the laptop to you later.

  33. I’m sorry about your laptop but this whole issue is so blown.
    Think of it, you have extended family in Israel and yet your blog has turned into an arena for all kind of Israel haters. They come here and spread their poison….

    Regarding the laptop and general paranoia in Israel.
    In the 90s a bus filled with people was blowing up every couple of weeks.
    Terrorist would blow themselves on the street.
    In 2001 disco with teenagers was blown up killing a lot of kids.

    Did you ever try to comprehend what it makes a person feel like? Living like this for years?
    I suggest you think about it in your spare time…
    Especially since you have extended family here, in Israel…

  34. If you truly believe the rumors that Israeli soldiers knowingly, deliberately “shoot every day at unarmed people, even children” then you probably don’t fully know and understand the culture of the Israeli people.
    The Israelis have some negative, some positive cultural and behavioral properties, but there are things that they don’t do.

    If you truly believe something that is told and spread from ear to mouth between the Arab people, then you probably don’t fully know and understand the culture of the Arab people.
    The Arab people have some negative, some positive cultural and behavioral properties.
    Some of them spread lies. Why ? Because if they were true, this would serve the interests of the people.

    Sure, on the internet you can write whatever you want. Even if it’s wrong, in some countries even if it offends a person, or a group.
    However, for yourself, I’d recommend you not to believe everything that you read or being told, and to dig a bit more into a subject before you set your opinion on something.

  35. Well, these people (Israeli security authorities) shoot laptops sometimes, because israel has been the victim of terrorism for many years, and Israelis have to be careful.

    Israelis do not intentionally kill “unarmed people or children” as you suggest. In fact, it is the Islamic terrorists (some of them come from Egypt too, mind you!) that intentionally target innocent civilians (does 9/11 and suicide bombs on buses and in restaurants in Israel ring a bell?)

    In the course of committing terrorism and shooting rockets at Israeli cities, hamas terrorists hide behind palestinian civilians. It is the Hamas and its supporters that commit war crimes! Do not fall for the terrorists’ propaganda. Israel is the victim of terrorism, not the criminal.

    As for your laptop – I am really sorry about it, but after reading the Israeli Security people’s response (that there has been some security indications that required action) it seems like we are not getting the all story here, and they would not have done so for no reason.

    • Give me a break. The Gaza GHETTO has 1.5 million people in it. Most of them are children in a densely urban area. Israelis know good and well that when they respond to some hand make rocket landing in Sderot by bombing a heavily urban area they’re making a decision to kill innocent people. When they turn off power to Gaza, they’re punishing everyone.

      You can claim they have no choice, but don’t even try to pretend like they aren’t making a conscious decision to harm and kill innocent people. I know it’s fashionable to say the victims of Hamas terrorism is “terrorism” and the terrorist response by Israel (using weapons provided to them by the US) is “collateral damage”, but call it what it is: a decision to kill innocent people.

      PS: I’m ashamed the US Army Corps of Engineers is building that wall between the Sinai and Egypt, but on the bright side the wall will probably be as effective as the levees in New Orleans. Zzzzzzing!

      • I have a few short comments:

        1. If the Hamas is firing not “some hand made rocket” but thousands of them into Israelis cities with the declared and intentional purpose to kill and terrorize civilians, any responsible government would have to answer in a very determined and strong manner.

        2. The coward Hamas terrorists shoot from civilian areas (hiding behind and in civilian places, including hospitals and mosques). Often Israel gives up the possibility to shoot some of these terrorist due to the possible danger to innocent civilians (something which no other western government would do).
        3. Indeed, sometimes unfortunately civilians die in Israel attacks – but these attacks are not against civilians but against terrorists.

        4. Your comment about the New-Orleans levees shows clearly that you are the one who doesn’t care about human lives and the suffer of others. You should be ashamed for making fun of the suffering of thousands in New Orleans.

      • And the terrorists make their choice knowing the retaliation will come. They attack innocent people. They attack from urban areas knowing the civilians around them may be be killed by the return fire. Call THAT what it is: a decision to kill innocent people. Twice.

  36. Hi,
    First, I know it’s not worth much but I’d still like to apologize (as an israeli) for the terrible experience you went throguh at the border, and I’m not just refering to the laptop.

    Second, it might interest you to know that racial profiling at border checkponts and at the int’l airport is daily routine for all palestinians, those with israeli citizenships as well as those without. I’ve heard of foreign citizens like yourself who were denied access to israel when coming from egypt, simply because they had answered one of those questions wrong..or maybe had a syrian stamp on their passport

    I still don’t quite understand why they shot your laptop. Unattended objects get blown up by the police bomb squad in various places in israel on a daily basis, but there is always a procedure of trying to locate the person who owns the object first… this just doesn’t add up. did they tell you why they did it?

    by the way, I wouldn’t be too optimistic about the compensation thing…israeli buerocracy can drive elephants crazy..

    all the best, hope you enjoy the rest of your stay in israel/palestine


  37. Sorry about your laptop.

    Israel is a small country facing enormous, unprecedented security threats since its establishment. I don’t want to go into reasons and ideologies, these issues are complex – just to state that this is a fact that Israeli citizens know well and experience daily. As a result, Israel is a highly secured zone – if this is your first visit, I’m sure you can see what I mean. I don’t think that there is another country that takes so many efforts to ensure the safety of its citizens, Jews and Arabs alike.

    The border between Israel and Egypt is extremely tense and the Israeli security forces have a lot of concrete threats and information about attempts to send weapons, explosives and suicide belts from Sinai to Israel. The job of the security forces in the Taba crossing is to ensure this doesn’t happen.

    I don’t know why they shot your laptop. I’m sure they didn’t shoot all laptops there. I believe you that you had nothing to hide and that there was nothing they should have had against you. I understand that your laptop was left unattended for a while, perhaps this arose their suspicion.

    The point is – thanks to this tight security, my family and friends in Israel can live in a relative normality. I am glad this is your laptop and not a bus full of children in Jerusalem.
    I can live with you not having your laptop and sleep well at night. I hope that the security guys who shot your laptop do too. Let’s take things in proportion…

    I understand that you’re angry, but the argument you made with “these guys shoot every day at unarmed people” is ridiculous. No army and security forces in history made so many efforts to protect civilians both among their own population and among the enemy civilian population.

    I wish you a good stay in Israel – there’s so much to do and see, this country is wonderful!

  38. Don’t be surprized if you don’t take any money at all. And if you take any, it would be nothing.. Too bad..I read your story but i still didn’t understand the reason that you where under suspicion..

  39. What happened to you is really sad. I hope you get compensated soon.

    But regardless, it seems like you ignore the fact that terrorism is a world-wide threat nowadays. If suspicous material were found in your bag or laptop in a U.S. airport, not only would they confiscate it (or blow it), but you may be arrested as well.

    As an Israeli who has been abroad many times, I can say that Israel is one of the most beautiful countries, and a very free one too. In fact, it is the only democracy in the Middle East.

    While it may be “trendy” to criticize Israel, don’t forget it is the only country in the region in which you can criticize the government freely and have no fear of retaliation (try criticizing the Syrian/Egyptian/Jordanian or any other government in the middle east, and they will not only blow your laptop…).

  40. What! Did you have to open a bank account there?! That’s just bullshit… this was in the airport, they should know that this type of thing happens to travelers who might not stay in Israel for a week or two, let alone a month! This is outrageous.

  41. Dear Lily …

    First of all, if you are still in Palestine & Israel, welcome to our country …
    I just wanted to tell you that the incident was Published in “Yediot Aharonot” newspaper (the most important newspaper in Israel) and I translated to you some of the many comment written by the Israelis (sorry for my bad English) :

    •Good job security people … this is how it should be

    •You are a radical left wing Jewish (he think you are an American Jewish) … you are more dangerous than terrorists

    •Excellent … this is what should be done with anti-Semite … Learn the lesson.

    •Great work security people … I know these people … they usually come to our state in order to support the “poor” Arabs

    •I didn’t understand … what is the problem in the story?

    •She must came to protest (with Palestinian) in Nilean (a Palestinian territory which is under the Israeli occupation) so she got her punishment

    •Just a moron don’t back up his computer files

    •The security people got confused … they should have taken her to the dungeon and leave the Laptop

    •Good job … it was even better not to let her go in (inside of Israel) … maybe she converted to Islam and she’s a terrorist … anyway, also not every Israeli get a Visa to America … and this is how we are treated in the American airports

    •Jews life are more important than your Laptop

    •Just buy a new Laptop

    •It sounds like they (the security people) had a good reasons … she sounds suspicious

    •You (lily) play Naïve … it seems that you aren’t that Naïve

    •It’s obvious in which side she is (with the Arabs … in the article it was mentioned that you work in Egypt with refuges) so you deserve it

    •You deserve it … why didn’t you try report this incident? Why haven’t you talk with anyone yet from the army (or something like this). So you went quickly to the internet to report how the Jews did that to your Laptop with out any reason

  42. well, since apple laptops cost more in israel than in the us, you might even make some money off this 🙂
    a friend of mine left his camera unattended in the central bus station in jerusalem and it was blown up (shot at by the police robot…), he actually got about 300$ more than the camera actually cost him.
    you actually should be more careful with your stuff and NEVER leave them unattended. not only in israel, but in any border pass or airport.

    I can only say- good luck with Israeli bureaucracy…

  43. Hi, and scuse me for my french (actually I’m french),

    Just to say that I don’t agree with you and Freitas. Ok, israeli army commited some crimes, like any other army… They make continuously bad decisions about how to take the crisis. They forget Palestinian people, and think to much about their own security…
    But the soldier was 18 ! he grown up in a country in war, he just heard about it every day since his born ! He certainly doesn’t know anything about what does mean living in a pacific country !
    Here to say that army kill children unarmed everyday… I went 3 times in Israel, my roomate is israeli and like every israeli, he did army. He’s not a child killer… or… I need to live my house right now (he knows that half of my family is from Marroco and my aunts speaks arabic !! one more good reason) !

  44. Come on now… “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people”? Who are “these” guys? I can assure you the guys you met at the border do not shoot every day at unarmed people.

    Another thing is I would bet you that if your laptop was destroyed by security anywhere else in the world you would get zero compensation. I’ve had to throw stuff away at airport lines because it wasn’t allowed on the plane, no one would dream of compensating me.

    What is always interesting to me about the conflict in the middle east is the extreme, somewhat ideological, positions that people tend to take. Within those extreme positions everything that happens under the sun is part of this huge master evil plan and the other side is demonized. Too bad.

  45. Come on. Your laptop getting destroyed is just a security measure. Have u heard of Islamic suicide bombers? They do use laptops with c4 inthem. Israel shoots at unarmed people? Please. Muslim terrorists kill civilians every hour by blowing up markets, churches, train stations. Go push ur idiocy elsewhere.

  46. ‘First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”

    If you displayed some of that attitude at the border, no wonder they were suspicious of you. If you think the IDF is a bunch of child murderers, you were indeed a legitimate terrorism suspect, and, as I noted in a comment to your last post, you indeed otherwise fit the profile to be a “mule” or dupe at least.

  47. BTW, the linked article says that it might cost $1.5 billion over 20 years to clean the aquifer in Gaza.

    Here’s my issue with this: During the period between the signing of the Oslo accords and the outbreak of the second Intifada, roughly 1994 to 2000, the US, EU, and even the Israeli government provided the Palestinian Authority with tens of billions of dollars to build basic infrastructure in Gaza and the autonomous zones of the West Bank. There was supposed to be a specific focus on water supply, waste management (including sewers) and transportation infrastructure to support industry. There were multiple border crossings with Israel that were open during this period, and plenty of Palestinian workers crossed the border every day to work at Israeli companies.

    Those tens of billions of dollars were never spent on the infrastructure they were supposed to fund. In fact, that money disappeared. No one knows where it went, and the Palestinians were left without the sort of basic infrastructure required to maintain basic sanitary conditions. You can’t blame the Israelis for the inability of the Palestinian Authority to spend billions of dollars they had in hand to build basic infrastructure during a period when the borders were open to bring supplies in.

    The borders were closed when the Palestinians started launching attacks against Israeli civilians, and the Israelis cut off the flow of tax dollars to the Palestinians when they elected Hamas, which refused to acknowledge the right of the state of Israel to exist. Had the Palestinians not launched the attacks and continued along the road set forth by Oslo, there would be a Palestinian state by now. They have no one but themselves and their poor choices of leaders to blame for their current position.

  48. Hi Lily! I read parts of your blog after reading about your laptop in “Haaretz”. I have the impression that you’re a bit confused about what’s going on in Israel, and our relationship with our neighbors. I would be happy to buy you a cup of coffee so we can chat. If you get to Tel Aviv, don’t hesitate to write:
    Hope to hear from you,

    p.s: You can use my laptop if you need to write some emails, too! 🙂

    • wonder if similar to offering to meet Lily for a coffee would mind to go and meet your Palestinian neighbour?

      to me it seems Lily is upset after the lost of her laptop and probably I would behave similarly.

      Israel keeps losing tourists, soon also the Jewish tourists wouldn’t want to visit.

  49. Hi Lily! I read parts of your blog after reading about your laptop in “Haaretz”. I would like to have the chance to show you sides of Israel you might not know – most of it actually, if I understand your views correctly, and explain my views regarding our relationship with our neighbors. I would be happy to buy you a cup of coffee so we can chat. If you get to Tel Aviv. I hope you’re not one of those “idealists” who are afraid to open their eyes and see other angles – it’s very common in this part of the world, and may be the reason to all that’s going on.

    don’t hesitate to write:
    Hope to hear from you,

    p.s: You can use my laptop if you need to write some emails, too! 🙂

  50. Hi Lily,

    I’m sorry to hear about your laptop. I’m sure it didn’t improve the already-negative view you had of us, Israelis. However, by your “tone” of writing, I do feel there are some matters that maybe you should think more of. You are clearly an intelligent person, and statements such as the one opening your latest blog do not respect you.
    I hope I don’t sound arrogant or condescending – but it is quite an insulting remark.
    I would love to buy you a cup of coffee and talk if you get to Tel Aviv on your trip. I hope you are not afraid to challenge your views, as I am always happy for the chance to learn more, and sometimes even change or alter mine.
    My email:
    I hope to hear from you soon!

  51. Hello,
    I live in Israel and I saw your article on the Internet I will be happy to respond to you.

    Are you coming to Israel, the Jewish state, and think quietly to let you access your laptop despite the fact that media has an anti – Jewish, anti – Zionist and anti – Israeli and if you think you can still enter the wrong. I appreciate what the police have done to you. If I was there I would throw you back to Egypt’s people like you make us weaker and weaker by the day for Israel’s image in the world. You’ll never understand what this fight in the most crowded in the Middle East, and fight tactics designed specifically to make people like you hate and spread the hatred against Israel. Do not you understand? Hamas uses children to make propaganda against Israel in the world. How do you not ashamed to enter the Jewish state with Tamolitit media against Israel? Are not you ashamed? Star of David, the IDF? These icons important piece of the country.

  52. “First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”

    Oh come on now. Seriously? You think Israelis killed more unarmed people than Americans have in Iraq and Afghanistan, not to mention Vietnam, etc?? I am an American and I think we need to criticize our own countries before criticizing others…

  53. haha, dumbass IDF. Who in their right mind thinks it’s a great idea to shoot at a possibly explosive device?!

    Great way to save lives, idiots.

    • Did you know that the Israeli Mosad killed a very famous terrorist (AKA Yihi Ayash, who was responsible for more than 10 terrorists attacks) with a bombed cellphone?

      Did you know that before Israel bombed the Syrian nuclear devices, they put a Trojan horse inside the Syrian agent’s laptops?

      Did you know that That none-arabs terrorist hijacked a French airplane on the 70’s with a gun inside a bottle of wine?

      Did you know that today you can’t even go on a plane with a tiny bag of tea?

      Well- i can tell you for sure- you don’t know anything about security.
      only in Iraq and Afghanistan they still using with a big bombs.

      Today everything is tiny – and more important- it doesn’t have to be a bomb. it also can be intelligence.
      a few years ago – 2 students from the UK were terrorist. although they were a very nice ppl! they murdered innocent israelis.

      And Lily. God- you’re blind. I’m sorry, i know you are a smart person- but you are naive. and maybe not- i can’t really know what was on that laptop.

  54. If we in Europe would shoot and kill the laptop of an Israeli Jewish tourist we would be violently attacked by the Kosher Nostra lobby; we would have to hear for months about how the “holocaust” is starting again and how the death of this jewish laptop is confirmation of deep anti “semitic” feelings of all Europeans. All European governments would be forced to provide a million Euro in cash as compensation for the dead jewish laptop . Dershowitz, Abe Foxman and all the other clowns from the Kosher Nostra would have their little hissy fits and jump up and down for months following the death of a single kosher computer.

    • clever slogans .

      did you make them up all on your own , or did it take 1000s of you unemployed white trash friends to come up with them?

      “We in Europe” , you are not Europe , your just the trash that is left on European streets, after a long night of drinking

    • aren’t you in New Zealand? I read your anti-jewish and anti-Israeli posts on and other sites every day I visit, is it your full time job?

  55. One has to acknowledge that amongst the Palestinians there are many terrorists, who are killing women and children in the name of Islam. Because some in the U.S and Eurpoe do not understand their true meaning, they assist them, without even knowing that their actions endanger peace.
    I guess that they shot your computer because you refused to cooperate with them

  56. Let’s get a few things staight:

    “First of all, if you are still in Palestine & Israel, welcome to our country …”

    Correction: I was not aware there is a country called Palestine.

    Unfortunately anyone who thinks IDF kills children is ignorant, brain washed, or both.

    While I am sorry to hear about your laptop (it’s only money afterall and your data was recovered), but it seems you raised several flags and were not being very cooperative with security. Personally, I would rather know that the airport security in Israel actually takes protective measures to prevent harm to innocent civilians where possible explosives and terrorists are involved. Let’s not forget the Muslims and Arabs who strap bombs to themselves that indiscriminately kill innocent women and children everyday in Israel (let me if you are not aware of this I will post daily news links).

    @Escobar you’re the “idiot”: shooting (or exploding) at an explosive device once it is safely contained is the standard way to disarm it.

    No country’s government is perfect, by no means (not even the US), but Israel is the only shinning star in the Middle East and surrounding countries would do well learning a few things from Israel in how to properly run a country.

  57. don’t forget bloggers are usually being paid for each visitor. lily seems to me like a smart girl, so her agreement with the racist comment doesn’t make any sense!
    (of course I’m talking about “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”).

    She is being provocative, and the reason is crystal clear, GREED!

  58. hey lily,

    do you enjoy the attention from ppl that would normally seek to kill you?

    self hating jews are the worse…

    you my dear win the “worse jew online” for this month 😦

  59. To be honest, I have no idea what went through the minds of the Israeli security guards when they did what they did to this girls’ mac. I don’t know motivation they could possibly have. While this information is unavailable, and perhaps will never be available, let’s all agree to call those security guards idiot savages, okay?

    But her comment about “shooting unarmed kids every day” – that’s the voice of hate, the voice of Hazbollah, and voice of militant Islam. I am pretty sure this blogger said nothing when waves of suicide bombers raided Israel and killed women and children point blank, as the intended purpose of the operation. I am pretty sure this blogger said nothing when Samir Kuntar, the latest and greatest Islamic idol got a confetti hero’s welcome after being released from Israel prison after killing a 4 year old, smashing her skull in with his rifes’ stock. Funny fact to mention is that he earned his bachelors degree while in Israeli prison, but Israeli prisoners in Arab hands usually aren’t allowed to even send in a sign of life… Talk about the difference in cultures.

    This blogger is a victim of well managed propaganda machine, one that tries to tell the world islam is the light of moderation and Israel is the enemy of mankind. $100 says this blogger doesn’t have the integrity and guts to publish my comment!

  60. Escobar, you’re the dummy, shooting at suspected explosives *is* the way to handle them – ever heard of the police robot bomb squads use? what do you think this robot is quipped with? a tray for serving drinks? no stupid: it has a shotgun for blasting…

  61. With all do respect, when you read between the lines you are getting to a conclusion this was a provokation staged from the start. the means are fairly simple: take a laptop, some pictures of israeli symbols and the F word on them, some pictures os the gaza attack, some pictures and maps of commonly terrorist-targeted locations in jerusalem, give all the wrong answers to when questioned, accuse them of being muslim killers, and then be “surprized” when they suspect you and act according to procedures.
    If you have some balls, go ahead and try to do the same when entering the US: carry the american flag with the F word, add some pictures and maps of an attack in Afganistan, the white house, congress, and an airport or an army base, when asked about these tell them they are killing muslim children every day and so on. Your laptop? ha! how long you think it will take before they let you meet a lawyer? do me a favor, it was a setup from beginning, you got your rating, Israel got its dirt, and everybody are happy, right?

  62. Oh come on are you serious?!?!

    From reading her blog Lilly seems to me like a curious traveler and philosopher. She has been on an 8 month journey through the Middle East, going as far as Doha and Syria and she documented it on her blog. I admire people like her.

    Lilly, thank you for sharing your journey with the rest of humanity, the uninspired 9-5ers who mostly sit on our butts all day long. May this journey be a stepping stone for you to achieving something great in this world!

    P.S. Eran – to the contrary – if anything I’m glad Lilly’s story appeared on the news, which resulted in me finding her blog!

    P.P.S. – Israelis don’t “shoot every day at unarmed people, even children.” We respect the life of every person and we want peace and prosperity for all. What does happen on a daily basis (unfortunately) is that we fight armed jihadists who unfortunately often hide behind unarmed children. May peace come upon us speedily in our days.

    • let me put it this way. greed isn’t such a bad quality. especially when you put it aside ignorance, let alone racism!

      I wasn’t planning put it that dead straight but since you didn’t understand it, I was actually doing her a great deal of justice calling her greed.In fact what she doesn’t want to be called is the way you think of her… (it can be only be explained otherwise as ignorance or racism)

      hell. I’ve been greedy quite a few times in my life (not as much but still)
      what I’m not is ignorant. I do lack in knowledge sometimes, but I’m aware and don’t go posting about these things on the internet… 😉
      And I’m most certainly never ever been racist!

      so, please just call her greedy, not for me, but the woman you look up to so much for some reason… 🙂

      P.S Shai – we do share a same idea about one thing, for sure. so let me quote you.

      May peace come upon us speedily in our days. Amen 🙂

    • I agree totally with Shai. Lily, I hope that you have seen and discovered many new things during your travels, and I hope that this most unfortunate welcome will not deter you from discovering the many positive things in Israel.

      Concerning compensation – as someone else already noted, bureaucracy in Israel is something very impressive indeed. Even for Israelis. Although since you have already gotten so much attention for your case in the media, perhaps someone who has the power to do something might actually make a special effort in this case. I would not hold my breath though! More likely that some kind hearted person will want to personally compensate you for the experience….

      Enjoy your travels, and keep bringing your stories to all of us. It is very important that all of us learn to appreciate the ‘dignity of difference’.

  63. Hello,

    How stupid can people be? I read all the comments here and I think it is nearly unbelievable what people write here. It’s not your fault, something like that will not happen in any western country (I’m from Germany btw). And when it comes to people saying that “they are proud(!!) isrealis” I can only shake my head.
    I am very sorry for you. Don’t listen to people who blame you for everything.

    Israel should really work on their image.

    With best regards from Munich


      • Israel’s existence embarrasses Europeans because it reminds them that the holocaust failed. Now the Europeans help the Arabs try to finish what the Europeans started because they think when there’s no more Jews everybody can just forget how inhuman the most enlightened, humanitarian Europeans actually are.

        They don’t realize the hebrews were there on this planet long before any of our enemies existed and will be so long after our enemies become footnotes in history.

  64. Apple should help you! Becouse it is the most powerfull advertisment! I think they should give you the best model ha ha ha.
    I do not belive that they make any shooting test with a macbook till now!:)
    Next thing – you can go to the shop and request guarantee change:)

  65. The Israelis and their comments here … such a funny, weirdo and people with twisted heads. In the article in, many people who made a comment there asked what is the address of the blog in order to try to talk to Lilys heart and to convince her that its just a mistake or trying to play with the “Islams are terrorists-you know that you are american-so we have to do it” claim
    Ahhh Israelis Israelis Israelis … hebrew people are d-u-m-a-s-s primitive third world country (and its even not their country! they stole it!)

  66. I dont get all these comments about Israel being a democracy. I always thought democracy meant one adult one vote but in Israel 50% of the population (living in West bank and Gaza) dont have the right to vote. And its not because these are not parts of Israel – Jewish settlers living in the West Bank do have the right to vote. So Israel is definitely not a democracy. Maybe Israelis feel they are more democratic then their neighbours but thats a matter of opinion not fact. The facts are the only two countries in the Middle East which have regular free and fair elections with universal franchise are Turkey and Iran.

    • Prabuddha,
      So you argue that the West Bank and the Gaza strip are or should be a part of Israel? I was under the impression that the Palestinians and their supporters want an independent Palestinian state.

      Citizens of the Palestinian Authority vote for the Palestinian parliament and presidency(remember the most known slogan against the boycott of Hamas, “it was elected democratically”?…). Palestinians who live in Israel and are citizens of Israel vote for the Israeli parliament. Jewish settlers are citizens of Israel, and are not entitled to vote for the Palestinian authority.

      This situation is not ideal – and therefore I support a Palestinian independent state in WB+G. This is, in fact, what the Israeli government declares it wants as well.

      Funny to hear that the elections in Turkey and Iran are “free and fair”, in the same week that we heard about a Kurdish party ruled out in Turkey and after a few months in which hundred of thousands of Iranians protest against the undemocratic nature of their government and election fraud.

    • those arabs living in the west bank and gaza choose not to be israeli…therefore they do not have the vote

      how many non citizens have the right to vote in america

  67. Lily,

    I don’t normally address blogs: reading them, posting them or replying to them, even when friends forward them to me, thinking that I may find them interesting. I just don’t have that kind of time. However, after a friend forwarded yours to me, and followed up at a Chanukah and birthday party last night, I found this just too compelling to ignore. Therefore, Lily, I hope that you will take the time to read this, painful as it may be. I mean only the best for you.

    Your name indicates that you are Jewish, but your comments indicate that you are woefully ignorant, though I assume an intelligent person. You travel to the nation of your ancestry, yet you know nothing of your heritage, your religion or the countless number of honorable Jews, who sacrificed everything but their sacred honor so that you, a dumb and spoiled American, can visit your ancestral home in freedom.

    You have reduced a GREAT learning experience to a destroyed laptop computer! The following brief comments concern three issues in order of importance: your computer, your travel and your future.

    First, your computer. I am also a Mac user, and I love my Mac a little less than my dear wife, so I’m always concerned when I take it out (the computer, not the wife: she is quite capable of taking care of herself). You should back up everything that is important to you, especially when you travel. As a Mac user, you have hopefully, in addition, backed up your data to the Cloud, via your MobileMe account. That way, you can restore your lost data.

    Next, your travel. Any savvy traveler needs to understand the location where they are and where they are going to in order to first travel in safety, then enjoyment. That does not require that you must be a scholar, only that learn a little about the culture, history and customs of the location, if nothing more than just to stay out of trouble. Though you may disagree with the local ideas, there are reasons for them, and the residents, themselves probably take them seriously – reason enough. In the case of Israel, VERY seriously!

    Israel survives in a hostile neighborhood of not only terrorist that are looking for EVERY opportunity to destroy her, but established nation states as well work for her destruction. Israel is admittedly paranoid for good reason. Every visitor, Jew or not, needs to understand and be sensitive to this.

    When you travel to any place, ask yourself: am I bringing in or wearing or otherwise expressing myself in any way that may offend the local people? In your case, it was the stickers on your computer and some of the contents on your laptop – you should EXPECT it to be thoroughly examined. In Israel, security is critical, not just weapons, but data too.

    Had you tried to enter many other countries as you had in Israel, including the neighboring Arab nations, you would have lost much more than your laptop; your family and the U.S. State Department would be negotiating for YOUR release. If you had wandered close to Iran, you would be on trial for espionage, and negotiating for your LIFE from prison! In North Korea, you would probably never be heard from again!

    Finally, your future. Like many ugly Americans who travel, I am certain that you really meant well. You actually sound like a nice person. But until you get ready to travel again, I suggest that you STAY HOME and read first…BOOKS, newspapers, travel alerts. Listen to National Public Radio, and stay away from people who yell: broadcast, print and in person.

    I write to you on this fifth day of Chanukah. It concerns much more than oil that lasted for a week. Check it out at Then you will understand why I bothered to write to you at all.

    I wish you a peaceful, safe and joyous Chanukah, Lily; and the knowledge and wisdom to make sense of it all.

  68. They should really make a commercial. I can picture this:

    • One MacBook laptop: $1000
    • Client case notes and testimony, writing, pictures, music and applications: Years of work
    • Not keeping a backup in a safe, secure location: Who needs backups?
    • Getting said laptop shot by border guards and realising you don’t have any backup: Priceless.

    Or maybe this one…
    Backup: So easy, a cavewoman could do it.

  69. Freitas’s comment is a typical extreme leftist one. Do you really think that Israelis “shoot every day at unarmed people, even children”?

    You have to be a complete ignorant babe and extremist to think so, but it’s the rage among them to think so and to act accordingly, while not raising their voice, not a pip in the face of rockets directed on purpose, from the Palestinian side to pure civilian targets in Israel.

    Now, Freuta, why don’t I hear you say something about this, huh? WHY?

    Isn’t this The height of hypocrisy to think, behave and act like you do?
    Esp when the Palestinians do this as a policy, on purpose, while the Israelis have some unfortunate accidents in which civilians are killed?

    Why Israeli lives are so cheap to you? Why killinjg civilians policy is all right when it
    s done by your beloved Palestinians while unfortunate accidents are wrong when cimmitted by Israelis?

    Can you answer my questions?

    And Lily agrees w Freita, why not? Makes sense to believe rubish, when Israelis are the subject.

    Sda, very sad that you can even entertain such notions.

  70. I’ve been following all the comments between the two blogs concerning the blown up laptop. I find it interesting how a destroyed laptop could bring so much to the surface. It’s very sad to see two groups of people with so much to offer the world so lost in hate. I remember going into the electronics store right after 9-11 and wanting to beat the crap out of every possible Muslim/Arab I saw. Of course I understood those feelings as completely irrational, and they faded within a few weeks. I can only imagine living in a country where the people I was living right next to could harm me just because of where I’m from, something I couldn’t change. It’s like if people from Nevada started blowing up people from California just because we’re Californian. If that happened and happened with regularity, I’m sure I might feel the same as an Arab or Israeli. It’s why I say both groups of people are lost in hate. Mistakes were made in the past. There doesn’t seem much point to discussing what those are. They’re just distractions that make it easier to hold onto the hate that I’m sure has become dear to both Arab and Jew. And, I’m sure losing that hate would feel like a broken heart.

    I’m not offering any kind of a solution here to the problem or morally condemning anybody. It just makes me very sad. And here in America I think we need to be very careful that we don’t get lost again in the same kind of hate as the Arab and Israeli. It’s taken us a hundred years to even begin to awaken from the kind of hate that my people have had for one another. And I’m not saying that every Arab hates or every Jew hates. Someday the number of people that don’t hate will outnumber the ones that do. I think once people take the time to get to know one another either by choice or circumstance is when those numbers begin to turn. That’s how it’s been happening here I think.

    Anyway, these are just my thoughts on the subject. I hope the road ya’ll are on isn’t as long as the one we’re one, and I hope both peoples will still be around to see it.

  71. Just so you know, I’m what you would call an extreme Zionist. I think the war in Gaza was justified, and that Jews should be able to live anywhere they want in the Land of Israel.

    But I’m sorry about your Mac. It was stupid and unnecessary to shoot it. I hope you will actually get fair compensation. Israeli bureaucracy is terrible. Yours would be too, if your country had been at war for 61 years straight.

    Your comments about the Palestinian children indicate that you believe the lies spread by Israel’s enemies. They’ve been very successful with this, but the truth — both historical and regarding current events is different.

  72. I have been following your blog for awhile. I was intrigued by your wonderful experiences in the middle east. However, I have lost all respect for you reading this POST.
    There is a difference between someone who wants human rights- and who is objectively assessing both sides of the situation, and someone who is ignorant and (i apologize) but stupid enough to pick one side and call the other murderers.
    Both sides have suffered and both sides have lost people they love. As opposed to Palestinians who strive to become martyrs, Israeli teenagers are sick and tired of the concept of the army. They want to start their life and not “waste” 3 years for this cause. people in Israel are sick and tired of this war, and you saying that they are out there to kill innocent civilians is juvenile and idiotic.
    I would have loved to continue to read about your wonderful experiences, but it is really a waste of my time and precious brain cells.

    Wow… Absolute disappointment. You really should be ashamed.

    ps; The laptop is just a THING… a REPLACEABLE thing. Get over it!

  73. Lily, first of all, I am really proud of you because your blog is so quite popular now. I saw so many posts in popular russian blogs quoting your blog. Internet must be a piece of freedom, free of censorshop, so keep going.

    No one can blame me for hating jews because i am not really hating them. Many of my friends are jews. That is certain country’s policy with some jerks ruling it, and yes, after wasting five years in Israel, and being its citizen, I can certainly say: I hate Israel. I am originally from Eastern Europe (Ukraine).

  74. I can’t reiterate enough what many other commenters said about feeling sorry for your laptop but that accept the reality of the situation. I want to address this aspect of your posting: “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. ” Were you speaking of Egyptian border guards or Israeli? Did you know that Egypt has a live fire policy for Darfurian and other African refugees? Barely a week can go by before we hear of another on in Israeli news. In 2008 alone, an average of one every ten days were shot. This is without any trial or prosecution, they are shot on the spot and even sometimes thrown over the border as was caught once in 2007.

    • She is clearly only judging and convicting Israel at every corner and the Arab countries get a free pass. I made this point exactly on another thread. Her mouth is tightly zipped up when it comes to Africans being shot and killed by the Egyptian border police (whom she calls very friendly in her Youtube video for Egyptian television.) This is naivety at its best.

      Believe me Lily aint going to comment on this:

      In Egypt, the response can be more immediate. Nongovernmental organizations such as the Hotline for Migrant Workers and the African Refugee Development Center say that Egyptian border police have shot dead several hundred migrants seeking to cross the border into Israel for work and asylum over the past few years. “From both Israeli soldiers and refugees who crossed the border we can tell for sure that the Egyptians almost always shoot, they shoot to kill and very often they hit the asylum seekers,” says Sigal Rozen of Hotline, an independent group that helps asylum seekers in Israel. At the Israeli cemetery in Hazor, Rozen points to 25 graves marked “Anonymous.” “These were asylum seekers,” she says, “who were shot by the Egyptians and died from their wounds in Israel.”

      Egyptian officials say security concerns justify their actions.

      Read more:,8599,1946861,00.html#ixzz0ZvChQITQ

      • Victoria,

        I am aware and sickened by the Egyptian security’s shooting of refugees and migrants.

        As stated elsewhere in my blog, I’ve spent the last 7 months working in Cairo as a legal advisor, seeking to resettle refugees (mostly Iraqis but also Sudanese). I spend my time writing legal testimonies in the hopes my clients will be resettled to countries where they can live safely and enjoy human rights denied in Egypt –I.e. access to state funded education, employment, freedom from discrimination, etc. In a way you could say my job is to prevent people from resorting to desperate measures such as risking their lives trying to enter Israel.

        In my previous blog post I described what happened to me at the Egypt/Israel border crossing. The Egyptian border personnel were friendly toward me while Israelis, well you know that story already….

        My point was not to make a blanket statement about the morality of either nation’s security operation, simply to tell my story.

  75. At least you (hopefully) will get money and not a new laptop. I would not feel comfortable with a device given to me by the government of a country that is known for their very efficient and active intelligence service, after officials from that country destroyed my own laptop. Not that I would assume that they really do bug it, but I would still not feel comfortable at the thought to use such a notebook for all my personal things.

    (And no, there is no way to make sure a computer is free of spying hardware/software. Especially not with macs.)

  76. You know if the Israeli Government doesn’t fully reimburse you for your Macbook, someone will read about that in one of your posts here on your blog, or in a news agency that will pick up on the news, and then some RICH JEW or some RICH ARAB will want to buy a brand new Macbook Pro for you. Then you’ll have to decide whether you want to the RICH JEWISH-bought macbook or the RICH ARAB-bought macbook. But I betcha that you can get one of those diamond-studded gold-plated macbooks from either one of them. Or maybe the Apple folks will take pity on your situation and use your situation for marketing and publicity and then give you a brand new replacement macbook. I’m sure that you’ll be getting a brand new macbook whether or not it’s fully paid by the Israeli Government. But I say shame shame shame on the Israeli Government if they only give you less than the full price for a new Macbook Pro.

  77. hello..

    i dont care what other people comment on this post, but i want to make one thing clear. Nobody With Clear Mind Would Shoot An Innocent Laptop. Ever.

    it just one goddamn laptop. period. it wont fit even smallest amount of explosive inside it.

    paranoid guard is paranoid.

    • Your ignorance is painful to read. It’s been a long time since I was in the army but enough plastic explosives, even the cheap Chinese or Iranian military produced explosives, could be packed into a working laptop to blow up an area of at least 100 sq meters. More than enough to cause serious casualties to any crowded location like a packed bus or mall. That’s more than a suicide belt wrapped with TNT.

  78. Hi Ms. Sussman
    Congratulations! you got your 15 minutes of fame!
    I was skeptical regarding your intentions when I first heard of the story, and your comment regarding your agreement with Fatima (“These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?”) have confirmed my suspicions.
    As a proud Israeli -let me just tell you this: I am proud of my country, and am proud of our defense forces. You are an ignorant, rightous person that has never been in situations where your loved ones explode in front of you for the sake of “freedom” of another people.
    Don’t worry though – hang around our region for a bit – and you may possibly experience this first hand (* and I actually hope you do).
    James Brown

    • Hello Mr. James Brown,

      Her laptop has ‘survived’ over 3 years to get posted by a fully unrelated person on Google Plus. From there I found a Lawyer’s blog and from original owner’s blog (this one). So, actually its beyond 15 minutes fame.


      Anyway, in this ~3 years, I guess Ms Lilysussman has really found her ‘boyfriend’ they were searching for and has added an iron casing on MBP !

  79. I think you could sell the laptop on eBay. If you have luck, someone will buy it. You have enought publicity to get a good price for it

  80. As an Israeli, I would suggest the follow actions, to get your money:
    Write a letter to the minister of internal security, with the following points
    * Telling the story about what happened to your Mac, at the border, by the Israeli border police.
    *Demanding the full cost of a new substitute for the computer + the cost of extracting the data from the old one (that must include time-wasted-at and transportation-to-the service lab).
    * Explain that any rejection to pay, will leave you no choice but to sue the state, and publish the story all over your country, specifically among travel agencies selling tours to Israel.
    * Lastly, put the address to send a check to.
    As cc: , put the following :
    The Minister of Tourism
    The State Comptroller
    Your embassy in Israel
    The Israeli embassy to your country
    The 3 largest newspapers in Israel
    The 5 largest publications of the tourism industry in your country
    And wait. It will probably take some time but it might work. You know the Middle East by now.

  81. someone up there said “If suspicous material were found in your bag or laptop in a U.S. airport, not only would they confiscate it (or blow it), but you may be arrested as well.”
    indeed… *if* they’d found anything suspicious. *if* they’d had any kind of legal leg to stand on, they’d have arrested her. not just shot her laptop. the fact they chose not to arrest her implies that they shot the laptop pretty much for a bit of fun.

    its all very well people saying ‘oh, Israel’s beset on all sides by people that want to see it destroyed, their security forces must be vigilant!’ – but do things like this really help them? do they make other countries think “hmm, maybe we should give Israel a chance”, or do they make other countries think “Yep, Israel’s some backwards country full of fanatics that we’re better of ignoring”?
    i’d also hope that these ‘vigilant’ security forces should be competent – rather than having one set of them take her away from her luggage, and another set shoot it. Either is was a deliberate act of malice on their part, or it was gross incompetence – neither of which are things you’d hope for from security forces…

  82. The Gaza arabs can always travel through Egypt..they are not under siege. There happens to be an almost continual barrage of rocket fire from Gaza into Israel, that is why Israel restricts the crossing.

    Are you aware that Egypt is building a wall to keep the Gaza arabs out?

    Do you care to know why?

  83. israeli Government is on welfare from America, You could argue that they owe you a Laptop on the Fact you probally already paid for one ( if you pay taxes ) With out American money israel would be crushed in 3 years top by the surrounding countries. It the saddest part about being an American, that we support this fake country that was givin to them by great britian and claims god gave them the land…. like he just jumps int real estate its only a matter of time for ur pathetic race gets stomped on again… I would be alot less vigil if i don’t spend about $600 a year out my hard earned money (taxes) on this bullshit If your country was self suffiecent I would atleast give you some respect but its sad very very sad. the Only reason were fighting in the middle east and that the Muslim world hates the US is our support of israel

    • ok dude Jewish people have been here for thousands of years it’s said that this is the homeland of the Jewish people, and you try living around 3 Arab countries that hate you cause of your religion they hate America cause they think there the best nation and they can do what they want. America does give support to Israel but Israel gives support to the US in military relationship look up the arrow program joint relationship with Israel and USA

  84. Hello Lily

    I am sorry to hear about your destroyed laptop and I hope that the new one you’ll be able to buy with the promised compensation will give you much pleasure.

    Israeli security is paranoid for good reasons as the country is located in a very rough part of the world and the neighbours are not friendly. That’s not to say Israeli security is perfect and doesn’t make mistakes. When traveling to and from the UK I also get frustrated by questions and delays but it’s best to stay calm and be sensible about what you bring into or out of any country.

    I am a PC user but I do admire the elegance of Macs. Good advice is to backup important data regularly. You sure the cecurity guys weren’t PCs in disguise 😉

    Now some time has passed since you wrote this comment:

    “First, I completely agree with Freitas’s comment. “These guys shoot every day at unarmed people, even children. Why so much surprise about a simple laptop?””

    so do you honestly truthfully believe such a statement or was it made in frustration?

    It’s the kind of libel usually written by those who are either ignorant or those who knowingly take pleasure in spreading vicious lies simply because they hate Jews and Israel and would love to see both destroyed or turned into a sub-class as Jews used to be in Christian and Moslem countries.

    If you are one of those who just hate then there is no point in debating with you but if not then the solution is for you learn a lot about history and current affairs by reading from many and varied sources. I can recommend sources but you are smart enough to find a wide range should you wish.

    Really understanding Israel and the Jews takes effort especially if you have been exposed to lies for a long time and get most of your positive reinforcement from people who hate or are prejudiced, and you might find the deprogramming a disturbing experience. Call it an intellectual research exercise if you need a bit more justification.

    Finally, how was your trip to Israel, did you get a chance to meet some of your relatives and talk to other Israelis and how their families returned to Israel and learn a bit about what life is like in our far from perfect ancestral land?

    Be well

  85. Sorry, but I don’t have time to read all the comments. Has anyone else pointed out yet that the 3 holes in your laptop look like they were made with deer slugs from a 12 gauge shotgun? If the IDF uses 12 gauge shotguns, I’ve never seen any photos of it.

    I’m suspicious of your story, due to that and due to the fact that it seems absurd. Can you corroborate it? Did you file a complaint with Israeli authorities? Did they acknowledge in writing that they did this?

  86. I think Israel did the right thing and didn’t do the right thing. I have had friends who are Jewish be questioned on returning to Israel from a trip to Egypt it happens to them every time and there from the United States and now live in Israel and they are white. As I have seen they pictures and read the comments if u had a picture showing Arab hate for the Jewish people and had a laptop with Arabic letters so you can type in Arabic I would think that they though you were Arabic and hated the Jewish people. I was stopped when going to the western wall and asked questions and I’m covered in Hebrew tattoos

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