Beit Iba, Sun 14.9.08, Afternoon

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Ruthi, Aliyah - reporting
Beit Iba
   The Beit Iba checkpoint was very quiet. One
line of young men is being checked. They seem to be mostly university
students. The line is moving smoothly. In the humanitarian line the
women with children, older women and women students are waved through
without checking. The o
lder men in that line
are being checked. As we approached the checkpoint some students told
us that there had been a "balagan" (a mess), but we didn't see anything
unusual when we arrived. The vehicle lines were reasonably short; cars
were going through in about 10 minutes, both ways.
   More students have arrived and the soldiers
opened another line for the young men. In the small room with the
windows for checking there were about 5 soldiers, although only 2 were
checking. One, not checking, was a young women from the Military Police
who seemed to be enjoying herself with the other soldiers; there was a
lot of laughter and talking coming from inside. Ruthi stepped to where
she could see what was going on in the room. "Lady, you're disturbing
me in checking," the woman soldier said. "In what way am I disturbing
you?" Ruthi asked. "Do you want me to stop all of the checking?" the
soldier asked aggressively. "Are you threatening me?" Ruthi asked her.
"I was taught only to threaten Arabs," she answered. Ruthi moved away
from that spot.
   The bored young woman soldier went to the
booth where the people were passing to go into Nablus. She stopped them
and began checking their IDs.  "You don't have to do that. It's
unnecessary," another soldier told her. "But I want to," she answered.
Maybe there could be something more productive for young bored soldiers
to do???
   Since there was little for us to do we left.