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Following the Toll Road to Find the News

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“Kvish Shesh” is Hebrew for Road #6, the newest superhighway to grace our transport system in Israel. Unlike Roads #1 through #5, Road #6 is a toll road. It uses the latest technology – at least what Israelis regard as the latest technology – to go about the business of collecting tolls.

When the car enters onto the road, a camera photographs its license plate. When it leaves the road, another camera photographs it leaving. There are other methods of monitoring tolls as well. One can subscribe and get an electronic box for the car that responds with their electronic box. Computers compile the data and after a while, you get a bill in the mail for the toll. If you don’t pay, the corporation that runs Kvish Shesh seeks – and always gets – a court order to open up a “standing order” to withdraw funds from your bank account. If you don’t cooperate with them, they just dig through the computerized data associated with your vehicle and find a bank account with your name on it – and stick their standing order on that account. Then, in addition to the original toll, they stick on interest and penalties.

As you can imagine, this leaves endless room for fraudulent claims, arguing, negotiating – and complaints on the e-mail list I belong to for immigrants and would-be immigrants. That is usually what happens when Kvish Shesh comes up as a thread for discussion.

But not always. The original question (from the States) was, “Why did one get a bill after using a highway?” This was answered (by yours truly). But in Israel, you never get one answer. Either you get an amen corner or an argument. The following is an example of someone expanding on the issue.

There are a few levels of subscriptions. You get the best price when you buy/put a deposit down for their black box, which has sticky tape. You put it under the very top of your windshield, and it beeps each time you pass through the “toll gate.” There’s a toll gate right after every entrance onto the road, so if you travel three entrances, you are charged about three times the fee your level costs (it’s actually a slightly sliding scale), up to a maximum of (I think) NIS 12 for the whole length of the road.

The road right now runs from just about Beersheba until the East-West road running from Haifa to Tiveria. It intersects with Route 1 (Jerusalem-Tel Aviv) where 443 intersects, two miles or so before the airport.

The company wants to extend the south end to Eilat (which would be great), and the north end up to Metulla/Harmon (going skiing from Jerusalem would take only three hours instead of double that).

One of the best things about the road is the speed limit is officially 110 kph (70 mph). One of the more dangerous things about the road is that few stick to the speed limit (I’ve seen at least 160 (100 mph) at times), so when there are accidents, there are usually fatalities.

Eventually, the topic wandered into driving safety and car accidents, and even went into OT (off topic, not overtime) territory. That is where it got interesting.

Commenting on whether Kvish Shesh would replace the long, winding Route 90 in the Jordan Valley, this fellow wrote,

We already know that Sharon will retreat from the Jordan Valley after he wins the next election. Over the course of the past three years, he has built a massive border crossing south of Beit Shean on Route 90, and it seems ready to start operating at any moment.

Egged (the main bus co-operative providing most intercity transport) already bypasses the Jordan Valley with its buses to Kiryat Shmona and Tiberias (thru [sic] Kvish 6) and has cut back service to a periodic bus to Beit Shean.

Given that I don’t own a car or even drive in this country, I would have deleted the whole thread. But the minute I saw the post above, I decided to start reading.

This is another post from the thread “Kvish Shesh.”

Gosh, you are the second person this week to mention that border crossing near Mechola. I don’t remember seeing it last October when we drove through there, but maybe I did and thought it was a truck-weighing station.

In addition, someone I know who works close with the police, mentioned they are putting all their efforts into (not catching car thieves) the “day after” scenario (after Sharon wins), of unloading all the Jews from Judea and Samaria.

If this is being discussed by that many people in my own small circle, within such a short time span… could it be true? Are we headed toward loosing the girth in our country’s waist?

And yet another:

I have heard this about other border crossings going up like the one at Tapuach.

This is way off topic, but I think that anyone that will be sorry if Israel transfers a final total of 150,000 Jews out of their homes to the theme of the Gush Katif evacuees, needs to seriously consider ONLY voting for a party that they can be sure will stop the insanity. Similarly, unless one believes that what happened in Gush Katif was good for the Jews and for Israel and also believes that it would be good if it happened to most of Yehuda and Shomron, one needs to seriously consider ONLY voting for a party that they can be sure will stop the insanity.

Sorry for the politics but this topic already veered there and I think we are talking about the survival of Israel as a country. There are no
guarantees that this country will still be here in 50 years time. Are the current policies leading to a better chance of survival? (what do the facts of recent history show?)

The Kvish Shesh thread evolved as more news came through of border crossings being built.

from Foundation for Middle East Peace First was this posting.

You must not have been there recently. This isn’t a checkpoint, but as J. stated, it looks like a very large, modern border crossing. And it wasn’t there six months ago.

The Beka’a road may not be a good one, but it is easily 1/2 – one hour quicker than going up route 1 to route 6, then around the villages to Tiverya.

Shortly after came this posting from the fellow who had caught my attention in the first place.

I should also mention that another border crossing is going up at Tzomet Tapuach and the current checkpoint on highway #5 will be upgraded soon after as that area is also being prepared. It’s going to look like the border between Mexico and the States.

I really don’t think there’s anything to discuss or speculate about. Started by Barak, executed by Sharon.

Hmmm.

These posts all bespeak something commonly known here as “facts on the ground.” That is how the Zionist Movement has accomplished most of its goals in this country – with facts on the ground. In other words, it did something it knew the world would oppose before anybody could say anything.

There it was, a fact on the ground – a guard-tower and stockade built overnight, a ship seized carrying nuclear materials, the “Coca Cola” nuclear plant in Dimona, hills seized and built upon overnight, caravans put up, synagogues built. All challenging the world with: “There it is – what are you gonna do about it?”

Since this summer, we see our government actively dismantling our nation. And it is using the same tactics against us that it used to build the nation.

American military bases were built in virtual silence. Only the occasional want ad asking for English-speaking engineers with American certifications for an American government project gave any evidence of such activity. When it was completed, it was announced – a fact on the ground.

An American embassy is being built just north of where I live – in absloute quiet. Yet, anybody who knows anything here knows exactly where this embassy is being built. When it is completed (assuming events don’t swirl out of control), then it will be announced – a fact on the ground.

Last summer, 10,000 Israelis were expelled from their homes; their houses and businesses were destroyed. These people are now refugees within their own country. And the government has done nothing to make them whole. It has violated all of its promises to its citizens in order to keep promises to foreign powers – who have not kept their promises to us. Facts on the ground.

There has been nothing in the news about all these border posts going up on the sly. They are facts on the ground being prepared to be sprung on a still trusting and unsuspecting people.

Sometimes you need to follow a toll road to find the news.

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About Ruvy

Hi!! Thanks for coming to my article! I was raised in Brooklyn, was graduated from the City University of New York in 1978 with a BA in political science and public administration there. I lived in Minnesota for a number of years. There I managed restaurants and wrote stories. We moved with our children family to Israel where we now reside. My work can be found at Ruvy's Roost, Jewish Indy,, and on Facebook under my full name, Reuven Kossover