The following is a translation by Honenu of a letter sent to the Israeli Police by Yitzhar residents Amichai and Nira Matuki who were detained on suspicion of involvement with a “Price Tag” incident in Umm Al-Fahm. A post on the incident with which the letter is associated is found here.
Sunday, the 27th of Nisan, 5774 [April 27, 2014]
Dear Israeli Police,
On Wednesday, the 23rd of Nisan [April 23, 2014], policemen arrived at my house to summon myself and my wife to an interrogation on Thursday at the Ariel Police Station.
My wife arrived in the morning for interrogation and also requested to schedule with you a time for my interrogation due to the fact that you summoned me for a time at which I am at work. You had my wife wait for a long time. In the end to her astonishment you did not interrogate her but rather sent her home and told her to come with me at 17:00 in the afternoon, the time at which her five children wait for her to serve them dinner and read them a bedtime story. I will note that you did not tell us ahead of time that our interrogations had to be simultaneous.
My wife and I arrived in the afternoon at the Ariel Police Station. We appeared for interrogation even though by law we are not obligated to do so. You requested testimony from us on all kinds of incidents and events and on acts to which we have no connection and which we do not support. The interrogator asked me casual questions about my methods as a teacher and educator in Israel. I ask you: What are your methods, Israeli Police?! We were astounded by your shameful treatment and abuse of an average citizen.
After my prolonged interrogation the interrogator requested that I wait outside and then he interrogated my wife. I stood and prayed the afternoon prayer. The interrogator came and called me to come with him in the middle of my prayer. Again and again he disturbed my prayer. I finished my prayer and walked with him. As Jews we know that a Jew does not stop in the middle of silent prayer before the King of Kings, even if a king turns to him and inquires of his health. Does the Israeli Police have not even a bit of respect for anything holy and dear to the People of Israel?!
After consulting an attorney it became clear to us that we had absolutely no obligation to speak to you and cooperate with you in the contemptible process which you are leading, especially in light of the harm and distress you have been causing us these past few days with a humiliating tangled web of acts.
But this is not the end of the maliciously tangled web. Our astonishment grew at the end of the interrogation in Ariel as you gave us an additional summons for Sunday at the Central Unit of the Yehuda and Shomron Police Station. You summoned us on Thursday, gave my wife the run-around twice on the same day and now again on Sunday?! Again our lives will be disrupted – work, home, children and family plans – through no fault of ours! I will note that I told the interrogator that we could not arrive at the times for which we were summoned because I work until the afternoon. I finish work at 15:30 in Shavei Shomron. It is impossible for me to arrive by 17:00. Upon clarification of the location I [also] realized that the police station is located in an out of the way location and there is no organized bus line to it.
From all of this it has become clear to me and my attorney that you have deliberately chosen to abuse me and my wife. (It could be that it is your intent to use us as GSS informers.) We have no intention of playing into your hands in this ugly trend [Translators note: of being used as spies within our community].
The only way for us to protest your conduct is this: to refuse to cooperate with this process. We make it clear that we do not plan to speak with you from now on, because your actions thus far have well made it obvious to us that your only goal here is to abuse and antagonize, and you have no intent to investigate or examine the truth and the reality. We will not agree to cooperate with your acts against us!!
Amichai (and Nira) Matuki, Yitzhar