'Anin, Reihan, Shaked, Mon 25.5.09, Afternoon

Lea R. and Anna N. S.
Translation: Devorah K.
15:20 - 15:45 A'anin
The CP opened at 15:00. About 20 people including tractors returned home. Everyone who goes through presents a permit that is examined against the list that was made in the morning -- then the name is deleted.
An old man and his donkey are allowed to return home only after a long and tiring discussion. This took place towards the end of the shift which became even longer because of the discussion. The soldiers claim that the man went through with a young boy this morning. Now they want to know why the boy did not return with him. The old man, who speaks with difficulty, drags the donkey behind him. He explains by hand movements and a weak voice that the boy did not go out with him. He does not even know the fellow. The soldiers finally give in and let him go through.
Our acquaintance, P., suddenly appears on the other side of the CP and tries to solve problems and help those going through who are asked for explanations for every bit of cloth they have in their bags. A young journalist, in a  shirt on which is written 'The occupation is a crime', arrives with him. The shirt draws arrows from the soldiers. We asked him to bring us two of those shirts and promised to appear in them in our CP shifts. The journalist, M. B., writes for a German newspaper that is published in Arabic in the terrirories. He is a resident of one of the villages near Ramallah. He runs around here and there (I wish we had someone like him) and documents what he sees at the CP.
16:00 Shaked CP
Many people, whole families are returning from a funeral that took place in one of the villages in Wadi Ara. The visit lasted for two days. The passage and the inspection are routine.
The bags of clothes that we brought, got through to the West Bank without any difficulty, after they were inspected.
16:30 - 17:00 Reihan CP
It is now a quiet time. People are coming back from work, 'tired but happy' as we say. The passage is relatively quick. They claim that for the last several days, the passage in Irtach (Efraim Gate) has been easier in the mornings. And another cause for joy: The Bedoui village, A-Mricha, on the West Bank, has at long last been connected to electricity. Peopls tell us that recently the army expropriated about 500 dunams of agricultural land from residents of Ya'abed, in the area near Tura. The expropriated plots were divided into numbered units and the army instructed the owners of the plots to uproot the olive trees on them within the next two months. If they do not do that, the army will uproot the trees in their stead and the family will be fined. Because of the language difficulties on both sides, it is possible that something is wrong with the oral comprehension. We gave one of the drivers the telephone number of the journalist that we met in A'anin, who promised to get to the area tomorrow (Wednesday, 27/05/09). If the rumors on the expropriation and on the uprooting of the olive trees are true, we will pass the information on to additional people.

As always we encountered appeals from people who complain about not receiving agricultural permits, about personal hardships, tensions, and anger at the wearing occupation. With these stories of hardship, we leave the CP which is cared for and clean and flowering in every corner. An Israeli flag waves proudly in the central square and, from afar, lets everyone know who is in charge here.