Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Sun 6.7.08, Morning
6:50 AM, Bethlehem Checkpoint: Many workers outside waiting for transportation. The main hall was quite empty already but we heard rumors of many people still stuck outside on the Bethlehem side. Yet by 7:20 the crowd on the other side seemed to have also disappeared and our side was empty. So it was a "good" day today.
8:10 AM, Etzion DCL: about a hundred or more people already waiting outside the waiting room of the DCL. At 8:30 AM the doors were opened and everyone crowded in. We heard a lot of shouting from people who had numbers and thought it was their turn. One man, whose nephew had a private doctor's appointment at Hadassa this afternoon, was stressed because he was accompanying the boy (15 years of age) and needed a permit. We called Dalia Bassa, who knew the case and tried to do something. After a while the man called Dalia himself. By the time we left, the issue was unresolved.
In addition to the impossibly large crowds at the Etzion DCL, there is also the phenomenon (written about in our reports) of people getting magnetic cards leading to nothing. Just the cards, of course, don't help you get a job or being able to get to it if you have one. Many people seem to have cards and no work permit.
We called the commander of the DCL about the crowding, but he - although extremely nice - couldn't do anything about it (he said)..
Ofra and I took about thirty new requests between the two of us!