Hamra, Tayasir, Tue 7.7.09, Afternoon

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Dafna B., Yifat D., LIanne and James, Guests

Translation: Bracha B.A.

11:00 Hamra Checkpoint

The lights are on at the checkpoint.  Drivers from every direction are waiting in line for soldiers to signal them when to drive forward.  “Get back.  Take off your belt, your shoes, your watch, anything that you have with metal,” but he does not look at the man after he does what he has been told.
A group of young Palestinians dressed fashionably receives more serious attention and less harassment than a couple of farmers dressed in traditional clothing who are checked immediately afterwards.
People are called to come up in groups “Hamsa, hamsa” (five, five) or “Wahad wahad” (one by one) or “Talata talata” (three by three) – Everyone going through has to squeeze through the space between two concrete blocks that is only as wide as a slim person.

We visited the residents of the tent camp who live next to the Tayasir Junction from the Alon Road.  They have been living here since 1967 and unlike other people they did not receive eviction order but they have other difficulties.  They are not allowed to make a path to reach their fields with a tractor.  There is an army officer (whose name we know) who harasses them – he scatters their sheep, cuts ropes, and threatens.  Sometimes he is accompanied by people from the settlements of Maskiot or Hemdat.  We have heard about his harassment many times from others.

12:40 Tayasir Checkpoint
The soldier pokes a pile of hay on a truck with his rifle.  “Certificate!” he shouts in Hebrew to the 14-year old girl who wants to go through.  “Abla” (idiot) he calls to an elderly man, and another soldier searches the car as if it were his.  A woman about 70 years old gets out of the car and walks slowly along the pedestrian path.  A woman with a newborn infant is squeezes between the steel turnstile with difficulty.  Four children go through the shed to the soldiers’ booth together, holding hands.

15:00 Gukhia Gate
No Palestinians are arriving and it is not clear whether the soldiers see that there is no one waiting from the watchtower and are deciding not to come, or whether they are late or not there.  At any rate the gate was supposed to open from 15:00 to 15:30 did not open.

15:15: Hamra Checkpoint
A soldier asks a man, “What exactly to you teach?”  After he nods in approval as another  man takes off his clothing. “Is that you?” the soldiers asks looking at his ID.  He waves his arm above his head.  “Go on, go on.”