This guerrilla-style documentary follows the notorious Israeli 5250 squad in action as they target foreign workers for deportation.
Israel has found an original solution to illegal immigration: a massive force of anti-immigration police who patrol the streets rounding up foreigners. Every immigrant in Israel knows '5250', the number on the force's license plates. Since the Deportation Police Force was founded more than 130,000 people have been deported at a rate of 136 per night. Rumour has it that the Deportation Police arrest and assault any migrant they find, whether legal or illegal. Thirty Israeli film students turned on their cameras and followed the Deportation Police on their rounds. This is what they saw.
'When a cop or someone comes up to you, asking questions. This is your power: the camera. Keep filming all the time'. Pulling up on a busy shopping street the students see a 5250 van with dark windows, surrounded by a crowd. When the students arrive officers are manhandling an Israeli man into the van. From inside comes the voice of a young woman: 'I'm a neurosurgeon from Ichilov, I have a passport, I have ID. I showed them.' Catching sight of the film camera she struggles into view. 'Please take my picture. My name is...' The woman is wrestled back into the car, which speeds away. A shocked bystander tells us what happened; 'they took this foreign worker, laid her down on the floor here. They wanted to put her in the van by force although she had a passport and when she refused they started to beat her'. When a man in the crowd told them to stop they beat him too and arrested them both. Across town a terrified woman is surrounded by officers. She appears to be injured and is screaming. 'I have ID, help me!' She fights her way between them and collapses on the pavement. One of the officers suggests that they leave her there, but the others disagree and they lift the woman into the car still shouting for help. Foreigners in Israel go to any lengths to avoid the Deportation Police. Myra, a house-keeper from Africa, is looking for a hide-out with her boss Rachel. Rachel approaches a shop assistant 'Myra works for me and I'm looking for a possible storage space' she pauses, nervously '...for her'. After hours of searching they find a giant terracotta pot. 'You get a plastic pot and just hold it and cover your head', the shop assistant suggests. Myra goes over the the pot and grins. 'Wow, it's really nice'. She has found her hiding place. The filmmakers have come to Immigration Police Headquarters to wait for Mary, the young doctor, to be released. A friend, also a Phillipino, is waiting to bail her out. 'When I came to Israel, things didn't used to be like this', she says sadly. When Mary is released she seems shellshocked, 'I'm a doctor here and I'm a neurosurgeon and they're doing this to me, and I have legal papers here in this country. What do they do to the people who don't have papers; who are illegal workers here?' She shakes hands with Boaz, the man who was arrested trying to help her. 'I want to apologise for Israel, I'm ashamed', he says. In the African church Myra attends the pastor is preaching. 'You know, times are not easy for foreigners', he says. 'It's the same for those that have got papers and those who have no papers. We don't know why the Lord has allowed this situation to happen in the land called Holy Land'.FULL SYNOPSIS