Appreciate this article? +972 depends on your support.

Click here to help us keep going

Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

U.S. Jewish activist to undergo surgery on arm broken by Israeli cops

Sarah Brammer-Shlay, whose arm was broken by Israeli police as they forcibly removed her from a Jerusalem Day protest, will be undergoing a $25,000 operation on Thursday.

Sarah Brammer-Shlay (Eliana Fishman)

Sarah Brammer-Shlay (Eliana Fishman)

An American-Jewish activist whose arm was broken by Israeli police as they forcefully dispersed a Jerusalem Day protest last week will need to undergo surgery.

Sarah Brammer-Shlay, 25, was part of a group of American and Israeli Jews who staged a demonstration at Damascus Gate last Wednesday. The protesters, who sat in a row along the entrance to the Old City in order to try and have the annual March of the Flags rerouted, were physically threatened by right-wing Israelis before being removed by Israeli police. In addition to breaking Brammer-Shlay’s arm, police dragged at least one protester away in a headlock.

Brammer-Shlay, a member of American anti-occupation group IfNotNow, told +972 Magazine that the operation would cost $25,000, and is scheduled for Thursday at Jerusalem’s Hadassah Medical Center. She expects to be hospitalized for between two to five days. A fundraising campaign has so far brought in $6,500 in donations, but Brammer-Shlay is unsure that her travel insurance will cover the remaining cost of the surgery.

Israel Police spokesperson Mickey Rosenfeld, responding last Thursday to a request for comment on the incident, did not deny that members of the police had broken Brammer-Shlay’s arm. At the time of writing, the U.S. State Department had not commented on the fact that Israeli cops assaulted an American citizen, to the degree that she will need to be operated on.

An activist with IfNotNow is carried away by Israeli police during a Jerusalem Day protest, Jerusalem, May 24, 2017. (JC/Activestills.org)

An activist with IfNotNow is carried away by Israeli police during a Jerusalem Day protest, Jerusalem, May 24, 2017. (JC/Activestills.org)

Wednesday’s protest against Jerusalem Day, a highly-charged, intensely nationalistic and consistently violent affair, came as well over 100 American Jews are in Israel-Palestine participating in anti-occupation activism. The “Sumud Freedom Camp,” a Standing Rock-inspired protest encampment set up by Palestinians, Israelis and diaspora Jews, is currently in its ninth day, having already been dismantled twice by the Israeli army.

Police and army violence is near-automatic in response to demonstrations by Palestinians, Ethiopian Israelis, and Israeli photojournalists and anti-occupation activists who attend protests in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The presence of diaspora Jews has traditionally stayed the authorities’ hand, but as Jews from around the world head to Israel-Palestine in order to step up their nonviolent activism against the occupation, it seems that the authorities are responding in kind.

Donate banner

Before you go...

A lot of work goes into creating articles like the one you just read. And while we don’t do this for the money, even our model of non-profit, independent journalism has bills to pay.

+972 Magazine is owned by our bloggers and journalists, who are driven by passion and dedication to the causes we cover. But we still need to pay for editing, photography, translation, web design and servers, legal services, and more.

As an independent journalism outlet we aren’t beholden to any outside interests. In order to safeguard that independence voice, we are proud to count you, our readers, as our most important supporters. If each of our readers becomes a supporter of our work, +972 Magazine will remain a strong, independent, and sustainable force helping drive the discourse on Israel/Palestine in the right direction.

Support independent journalism in Israel/Palestine Donate to +972 Magazine today
View article: AAA
Share article
Print article
  • LEAVE A COMMENT

    * Required

    COMMENTS

    1. Richard Lightbown

      “but as Jews from around the world head to Israel-Palestine in order to step up their nonviolent activism against the occupation, it seems that the authorities are responding in kind.”

      Shurly shome mishtake. How about “the authorities are NOT responding in kind”?

      Reply to Comment
    2. Henry Lowi

      Need to systematically organize defence of demonstrators, and of Palestinian communities, from violent cops and violent settlers. Until there is organized self-defence, and organized solidarity, all talk of peace and coexistence is so much hot air.

      Reply to Comment
    3. Willem Sassen

      Now Zionists are going to make money on her surgery. She should demand transport to Mukasseb Hospital in eastern Al Quds, or anywhere else the zionists cannot profit from her

      Reply to Comment
      • Itshak Gordin Halevy

        We have here in Israel among the best doctors and the best hospitals in the world. This is the price for a surgical operation. Would you really go to an Arab hospital? I do not think so.
        I hope that after her surgical operation she will go to a courtroom.

        Reply to Comment
        • Shira

          hum. you do know that a significant percentage of doctors and surgeons in Israeli hospitals are Arabs, don’t you?

          Reply to Comment
          • Itshak Gordin Halevy

            Yes, of course. This is not a problem. We do not hate the Arabs except if they do not respect our laws.

            Reply to Comment
      • Mark

        $25K – Stories like this make me grateful for our National Health Service. There is no billing system in place.

        Reply to Comment
        • Firentis

          If she was an Israeli she wouldn’t have to either. But she isn’t. She is a foreigner that decided to undertake high risk activities without having the required healthcare. In other words she is an idiot.

          Reply to Comment
    4. i_like_ike52

      Someone, who is a foreigner, not an Israeli citizen, who participates in an ILLEGAL demonstration in a very sensitive location, where the security forces are already on high alert, should not be surprised at what happens. She was NOT “assaulted” by the police, they were doing their duty to prevent a situation from spiralling out of control. I also heard that none of the protesters was arrested, although the police had every right to do so.

      It should also be noted that the constant refrain I hear here, the flag march is “violent” and “racist” is an out and out falsehood, unless one considered Jews being proud of being Jewish as being “racist”.

      Reply to Comment
      • Ben

        Apparently you think Jews being proud of being Jewish involves shouting abuse at Palestinians out on the streets and giving them obscene gestures such as the middle finger, pushing and shoving, Arab shopkeepers forced to close their shops, shouts of “Muhammad is dead!” and “Burn down the mosque!”, hundreds of marchers wearing t-shirts depicting the destruction of the al-Aqsa Mosque, deliberately marching through the Muslim Quarter when there are plenty of alternative routes through the Armenian, Christian and Jewish quarters. And all of this is a considerable toning down from previous years, less violent than previous years only because the police kept a tighter lid on things, not because the marchers are better behaved or seeking to be the least bit more respectful.

        Reply to Comment
        • Itshak Gordin Halevy

          You can find everywhere people who have a bad behavior.. Please no generalisation. We can say that this injured girl has had a bad behavior.

          Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            In this case it is possible and proper to generalize within certain limits. It is repetitive, organized, planned behavior over many years.
            Notice how you are filled with caution about generalizing about Jews, because you view Jews as individuals, as persons accorded full human rights, but that you generalize all the time about “the Arabs,” but think it ok or you don’t even realize you are doing it, because you do not treat Arab persons with the same respect, you do not accord them the same status as individual persons with full human rights.

            Reply to Comment
          • Itshak Gordin Halevy

            We respect everybody except those who try to deprive us of our heritage

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            That’s a lie. You clearly don’t.

            Reply to Comment
    5. Firentis

      So, this idiot came to the Middle East to disturb the peace and confront the police without adequate health insurance or any real plan for dealing with injury? Clearly we are dealing here with pragmatic and sober individuals and we should listen to their ideas. Surely they aren’t just a bunch of spoiled American conflict tourists on vacation.

      Reply to Comment
      • Aron

        Agreed. Israel must sue these demonstrators for disturb the peace….
        I feel shame for Jews who forgot Holocaust and murders of Israelis, including and American Jews.. Poor Jewish parents to have children like these zombies…
        Lets ship them to Gaza to protest against brutal Hamas regime…

        Never Again !!!

        Reply to Comment
      • carmen

        What would the responses be if an israeli jew visiting amerikkka,the uk, australia, etc., participated in a protest and had his/her arm broken by police? I’ll go out on a limb here and guess the cry would be antisemitic goyim or something like that.

        Really enjoy the comments from so-called jews with regard to real jews who come here to protest the continued occupation and crimes against humanity regularly visited upon palestinian people, for +70 years now, all being done in their name. How could a scheme like that possibly backfire and have serious repercussions and consequences (endless ‘war’, unrest in the world, etc.)? #BDS

        Reply to Comment
        • Firentis

          If an Israeli Jew got his arm broken while protesting in the US, UK or Australia the response would be to consider him a complete and utter moron for sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong. He would also likely get deported.

          Oh look, Carmen gets to decide what a “real Jew” is. Apparently it is only the people that agree with her and hate Israel. How convenient.

          Reply to Comment
          • carmen

            I doubt that very much.

            “Carmen gets to decide…” It’s called an opinion, dipshit.

            Reply to Comment
        • Itshak Gordin Halevy

          First of all, it is for us the 50th anniversary of the liberation of the Judea and Samaria, including the holy Jewish cities of Hevron and Yerushalaim. When we are abroad we are used to respect the laws of the countries which we visit. We do not blacks streets and do not bother the passers-by

          Reply to Comment
          • John Piantanida

            Are you sure about that? Looks like you might be wrong now that the IDF feels it can enter AMERICAN College campuses and disrupt AMERICANS exercising their freedom of speech.

            https://static1.squarespace.com/static/548748b1e4b083fc03ebf70e/t/5931bd401e5b6c9b56503eaf/1496431938501/Letter+from+Civil+Rights+Orgs+to+UCI+re+Discrimination+Final+updated.pdf

            https://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=21834

            The first link is a letter of complaint that the University allowed this, the second a petition to the Chancellor asking for him to stand up for the students, not the foreign soldiers invading our schools.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Pretty shocking behavior by IDF troops in America, acting in the name of the IDF, if I understand this correctly. Better notify ‘Firentis’ right away here as he is totally against any foreign-funded or foreign-backed intervention in the internal politics of other countries and especially anything crudely assaultive and law breaking. (He has a strangely expansive concept of “internal politics” in Israel and a strangely cramped view of internal politics in the USA but that’s another thing.) I’m sure he’ll get right on it. I imagine he’s dashing off a letter to the IDF Chief of Staff right now protesting this use of IDF reserve troops to physically and verbally threaten people peacefully demonstrating on American college campuses. Wow.

            Reply to Comment
      • Bob Peden

        Very sorry to hear of her injury. Hope she recovers soon. In hindsight probably would have been a good idea to have purchased travel insurance. Not very expensive. Guess she’ll be stuck with the bill. Talk about adding insult to injury.

        Reply to Comment
    6. Click here to load previous comments