Jaba (Lil), Qalandiya, Sun 17.6.12, Afternoon

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Tamar Fleishman

Translation: Ruth Fleishman


Qalandiya Checkpoint:

"These are special sweets for the holiday, because tonight", I was told at Jaffar's in Beit Hanina "is the night on which the profit came from Makah to El-Quds and from there, on that very night, he rose to the heavens".


 At the checkpoint I was told by people who I am familiar with that there weren't many people "because of the holiday and because it's hot" (37 degrees Celsius).  In spite of the fact that there weren't many people and that four lanes were open, it was only after over 20 minutes that I managed to reach the other side of the checkpoint and find out that the ambulance on behalf of which I was in a rush had beat me to it.


Employing Contractor's Workers is Taking Part in Organized Crime:

Because of the trust that had formed after years of acquaintance with the Palestinian cleaners at the checkpoint, and after tens if not hundreds of small talk, I found out from one worker and then others who started off talking with hesitations, that the contractor that employs them exploits them, threatens them and also steals from the paychecks. I gave one of them the telephone number of an activist in Maan- an organization for workers, hopping yet doubting that at least some justice could be done for these people, and the ones among them that work double shifts in order to provide for their families.

Would it be possible to do so without exposing the identities of the complainers? – the fear is that a complaint might cause them to lose the little they already have.




Moments filled with Satisfaction:

"One Buza for one Shekel". So I bought one for each one of us. For the children, for myself and for Ibrahim. Ibrahim sells the popsicles, he is 11 years old, a new face among the children who peddle, and he is not allowed to eat the merchandise in the icebox he carries over his shoulder. He must return with the exact amount of Shekels as the popsicles he sold.

We all stood one next to the other on the exposed and blazing square, we licked the red or lemon popsicles and felt good, it tasted good, it sweetened our day and we were happy.


 Jaba Checkpoint:

"The dog trainers won't be in today because it's hot as hell. You will have to do with us" said the checkpoint commanders who I am familiar with. We had a long conversation as to the freedom of choice according to Judaism and about other subjects.

While writing the report this news flash came in: 


And just after it came in the prime minister's responded: "I condemn the attack on the mosque near Ramallah. This is the work of intolerant and irresponsible lawbreakers. We will work towards bringing them to justice quickly.


As some of us know that the soldiers post at the checkpoint is located only several meters away from the village and the wall the surrounds is near the houses.

They man the post at all hours, zealously and without questions or doubts filling in the orders, they protect (so they say and believe) the safety of the country when actually they work only for the to protect the safety of the settlers, did they not see or hear or smell the fire and those who started it?  


On the square before Hizme checkpoint which is intended for settlers alone, two Palestinians were making an effort to sell a huge beach ball- they had probably never seen the see and probably will never see it.