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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

It's not just the price of the tomatoes that's exploding

There was a report on Israel Radio on Monday about the rising price of tomatoes, a commodity that Israelis seem to buy regardless of its price. Apparently, due to the warm weather here in July and August, the crop ripened early, and due to the lack of available foreign workers, the growers picked all they could as soon as possible, rather than risk it drying on the vine. The result is that a few days before the Jewish New Year, the price has gone up to NIS 7 per kilo (about $1.75 per kilo or $0.85 per pound), with no end in site.

But in 'east' Jerusalem, it's not just the price of the tomatoes that's exploding. On Tuesday, police announced that they have discovered a cache of guns and explosives in a vegetable stand outside of Shchem (Damascus - yes, I know that's not a literal translation, but that's how it translates) Gate (pictured). Explosive tomatoes?
On August 8th Israel police raided a vegetable market on Sultan Suleiman Street, next to Damascus Gate in the economic heart of east Jerusalem, after receiving intelligence that the building was housing a large amount of weapons.

Police discovered multiple explosives, hand grenades, different kinds of pistols, and bullets. The room was hidden behind a vegetable market and had photos of different martyrs on the walls as well as Hamas flags, head gear to hide their faces, stolen berets from the border police, and NIS 250,000.

Police also discovered a weapons silencer, something that illustrates the fact that the people involved in obtaining the weapons are very advanced and organized, Rosenfeld said.

“This is a quality stash of different types of weapons,” said Rosenfeld. “Silencers, you don’t find every day. They were much more focused and on a higher level. The fact that it was hidden inside a grocery store, that it was clearly being hidden, that’s also very suspicious.”

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