The diaries of Ronald Baldwin, British Constable in the Palestine Police Force from 1946 to the termination of the British Mandate in 1948.
Monday 2 December 2013
19th & 21st December, 1947 - "Bicknell & I" brave the Souk and notice a change in the attitude of the locals
Friday, 19th December, 1947
I transferred the firearms case to the Urban today and all the staff
were happy as these cases are a lot of work and often for nothing.
A new order came out today as a result of a petition sent to the S.P.
this is that No British will go into the Suq with a rifle slung on their
arm. They must be armed with pistols
which will be concealed under the jacket.
Bicknell & I went together to the suq this afternoon. This is the first time I have been into the
Suq since the troubles. The attitude of
the people towards us is markedly changed in the suq where they feel safe in
the narrow maze like streets. The people
no longer make haste to clear the path for us to walk and the butchers do not
attempt to cover their meat. Nothing of
importance was said as we passed and the shop keepers we visited still value
our custom. I bought a case, pyjamas,
shoes and oddments. A walad seeing B
& I with cases shouted “El Englisee rah, Alhumdillila.”
Ron notices a change in the atmosphere at the Souk.
Saturday, 20th December, 1947
There was very little to do today after the finish of the primary
stages of the recent cases.
I tore a large triangular gash in my Kallil trousers this morning on
some barbed wire.
I changed into civvies for this afternoon I often do this when I get
browned off with uniform.
This evening I turned up the bottoms of my blue uniform trousers as
they are a little long. I managed to do
it passably after first turning up one more than the other and then having to
take it down again.
Sunday, 21st December, 1947
I was called away from breakfast this morning at 8.45 to prepare a
release of prisoners notice as the one I gave out last night has been
lost. This made me feel very angry
towards one of the Palestinians as the court started at nine and it would be
impossible to be there on time.
This afternoon Paddy Moore & I went for a long walk right around the
town. We passed three men carrying
rifles but of course took no action against them.