Ali Shuruf turns on the lights, that shine into a gaudy living room. Beyond the window, the dominant colour is uniformly grey: the house stands literally against a wall. Not just any wall – the infamous eight-metre cement wall separates Palestinians from Israelis.
Dating back to the late 1890s, the historical Jaffa-Jerusalem railroad winds in a U-shape at the base of the valley. Olive groves adorn the bottom of one steep hill. Further up the slope, pine trees and an Israeli army patrol road lead westward towards Jerusalem.
As Israel continues to build walls and fences along virtually each of its borders, analysts say the country’s isolationist
policies and unwillingness to deal with the Palestinians and other Arab neighbours through anything other than forceful means spells disaster.