Beit Iba, Mon 15.12.08, Afternoon

Facebook Twitter Whatsapp Email
Elisheva A., Yona A. Translator: Charles K.

    14:05  Much traffic
    on Route 55 from Bani Elias toward al-Funduk.  We’re on a long
    line of more than 20 cars.  The line disappears after al-Funduk. 
    Somebody made it his business to erase the Arabic from almost all the
    signs on Route 55.

    14:35  People entering
    Nablus on foot from Beit Iba aren’t checked.  Few young men leaving
    Nablus through the turnstiles, holding their belts in their hands after
    going through the magnemometer.  A soldier checks people leaving
    Nablus through the fast lane.  Each person waits for the soldier
    to signal them to advance.  People who advance before the soldier
    signals are sent back.  People are selected randomly to be checked. 
    Sometimes the soldier waves someone through, and sometimes he rummages
    through every bag and sack, and compares the ID number with the list
    of digits on the page he’s holding.  A man wearing a black suit,
    pink shirt and a tie hands his ID card to a soldier who compares it
    to the numbers on the page and finds a match.  The soldier goes
    over to the hut to look it up on the computer, comes back and returns
    the ID card to its owner.  Two men meet at the checkpoint next
    to the soldier.  The one coming from Nablus gives the man opposite
    him a large envelope.  The soldier asks what’s in it.  The
    young man bends it in half to show that it’s full of papers. 
    The soldier isn’t convinced, and the young man has to open it.

    15:30  A Palestinian
    approaches us and says that today he came through from Nablus without
    being checked, but yesterday, and a number of other times in the past,
    when the soldiers check his ID card they say “bingo.” They detain
    him, and he must wait a long time until his ID card is returned and
    he’s released.  “The soldiers say, terrorist, Hamas, it’s
    not nice.  I have ten children, I’ve got a magnetic card, I’m
    clean, no suspicious past…”  He asks whether we can help him,
    but there’s nothing we can do.