Israeli Pork

Note: I only contributed to this piece as Graeme Wood’s photographer and driver. The article is about pork production in the Galilee and was published on 23 September in The National, a magazine based in Abu Dhabi. As printing imagery of pigs in their full glory is problematic there, below the object of desire, unveiled.

The roads of Mi’ilya, an Arab town in the Western Galilee, snake their way up a steady incline, and the houses all have at least one window that looks out onto another village nearby. Most of those villages are hostile, in one way or another.

The 2,800 residents of Mi’ilya are almost all Roman Catholic Arabs, though in the last few years a small number of Muslims have taken up residence, arousing some suspicion among Catholics who fear for the ethno-religious character of the town. The village’s closest neighbours are Jewish settlers.

Just a few kilometres to the north, across the Lebanese border, Hizbollah reigns in a series of old and tightly clustered hill villages, the sites of rocket attacks against Israeli communities, including Mi’ilya, for the past five years. From the village’s highest vantage point, near the local church, one gets a showstopping panorama of enmity: Jews who hate Catholics, who dodge Shiite rockets that land near Sunnis.

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