Watch: The camera is my weapon

For the past decade, Palestinians in the occupied West Bank village of Nabi Saleh have held weekly demonstrations in protest of Israel’s encroachment on their land.

Bilal Tamimi, a Palestinian from the village, has made a point to document Israel’s attacks on the village through his camera.

Tamimi started filming when Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem asked to have someone in the village document Israeli attacks, around the same time the demonstrations started in 2009.

The Tamimi family, whose home is in Nabi Saleh, has been subject to Israeli occupation arrests, harassment, assault, maimings and killings.

“I was targeted by the Israeli army by live ammunition, by tear gas canisters, which were directly shot at me, by rubber-coated bullets. I was injured. I was pepper-sprayed in my face. I was arrested many, many times,” Tamimi told The Electronic Intifada.

Ahed Tamimi, a teenager from Nabi Saleh, was imprisoned for eight months, and released in July 2018, for shoving and slapping a heavily armed occupation soldier after Israeli forces had shot and severely injured her 15-year-old cousin Muhammad Fadel Tamimi.

Bilal Tamimi’s wife Manal and his three children, Osama, 22, Muhammad, 19, and his 11-year-old son Samer, were also detained by Israel at several points.

Osama, the eldest, was released in September 2018 after spending nine months in Israeli prison.

His younger brother Muhammad was detained in January 2018 and is expected to be relased in September of this year.

“Everyone should stand in front of soldiers to document, to take footage, to show the world exactly what is happening,” Bilal told The Electronic Intifada.

In the video above, Bilal films an interaction between him and an Israeli soldier during a night raid on the village.

The soldier asks Bilal if he has a weapon, to which Bilal replies that the camera is his weapon.

Video by Activestills.