CAIRO: An American tourist had her laptop shot by border guards as she entered Israel via Taba two weeks ago.
Lily Sussman, 21, who had been residing in Cairo for some time, was about to vacation in Israel and while at the Taba border crossing, after two hours of questioning, Israeli guards shot her Apple Macbook three times.
Sussman wrote on her online blog that prior to the destruction of her laptop, the guards had “had completed around two hours of questioning and searching me. They had pressed every sock and scarf with a security device, ripped open soap and had me strip extra layers.
“They asked me tons of questions: Where are you going? Who do you know? Do you have a boyfriend? Is he Arab, Egyptian, Palestinian? Why do you live in Egypt? Why not Israel? What do you know about the ‘conflict’ here? What do you think? she continued.
At one point an announcement was made on the loudspeaker informing those present not to be alarmed by the sound of gunshots because Israeli security forces need to detonate suspicious passenger baggage.
A few moments later a man introducing himself as the manager on duty informed Sussman that they had had to blow up her laptop. They took her to it and it had been littered with three bullet holes.
“The security officers did not ask about my laptop prior to shooting it, Sussman told Daily News Egypt, “They used the word ‘blew up’ when they told me they destroyed my laptop. I don’t know why they shot it.
The hard drive was unscathed and guards gave Sussman an address where she would be reimbursed for her mangled laptop. “I’m going through the process of compensation, she said, “it supposedly will take about one month to receive the money.
Guards had also flipped through her camera to see the pictures on it as well as leafing through her journal. She was asked about a picture of a wall graffiti that had an expletive next to the Star of David. Asked why she had this picture Sussman replied that she had been disturbed by it.
Also on her camera were pictures of a photo exhibit about the Israeli attack on Gaza last December.
Amongst the items the guards found suspicious according to Sussman were an Arabic phrasebook, a guide to Palestine, stamps from various Arab countries and map of a bus station and hostel in Jerusalem in which she was to stay.
Sussman returned to Cairo last Friday.