Jerusalem: The Palestinian women were singing and chanting in Arabic while heavily armed Israeli border police looked on and occasionally pushed them back to make way for Jewish worshipers going to the Western Wall. The Palestinian women shouted and harassed Jewish passersby while Orthodox Jews living in apartments above the street threw bottles and water down at the Palestinian women.
About half a dozen Orthodox Jewish worshipers wanted to pass along the narrow street toward the Western Wall and the Israeli border police created a passageway through the crowd of Palestinian women. As the Israelis walked between the shouting protesters I focused on the woman in the center of the scene. When she was right in front of me, she turned and gestured to the Palestinian woman. It wasn’t something done for the camera — I don’t think she even realized I was there. It was only when I looked at the picture afterward that I realized that the Palestinian woman had returned the gesture, which in this part of the world is the equivalent to giving someone the middle finger.
An Israeli woman and a Palestinian woman gesture at one another during a protest by Palestinian women against Jewish visitors to the compound known to Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City, October 14, 2014. REUTERS/Finbarr O’Reilly