Two men from two different worlds, separated by a street, a checkpoint, a wall and, until recently, a worldview. One was a tall, slim young Israeli Ashkenazi Jew named Guy. On this night he entered the Old City of Jerusalem through Jaffa Gate the way an American walks into a familiar neighborhood in Boston or Chicago.
The other man was a middle-aged physician named Omar. He felt less confident entering the Holy City. Until 1995 he knew Israelis only as enemy soldiers or as settlers who took lives and land that he loved. At each checkpoint on the way to Jerusalem he had to present a pass, like a student’s permission slip, indicating when he could enter and when he had to depart.