Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Nuaman, Tue 9.6.09, Afternoon
Etzion DCL: empty.
In a shift last week we found on the noticeboard at the DCL confiscation orders for lands in the area of Tekoah and Nokdim. We drew Yesh Din’s attention, but decided to go there and clarify for ourselves. On certain areas alongside the road a fence is being erected by reservists. Yesterday we saw only the placing of support posts as preparation for spreading out the net of the fence. Along the road we encountered a few trucks that appeared to be transporting building materials to various sites. Is another settlement being built there? An expansion at a great distance from existing settlements? Not clear...
A great many caravans in the area, whether as immediate expansion of settlements or whether on the surrounding hills. Farm of an individual settler, apparently breeding horses, spreading over what appear to be a great many dunams.
There is intensive building of large fancy houses in Tekoah and Nokdim. The water distress in the Palestinian villages is not noticeable here. Everything is green and irrigated, and a large sign at Nokdim announces “Here there will be a park.” The construction is being done, of course, by Palestinian labourers, some of whom we met later as they returned to Palestine through a checkpoint. Did we hear about “natural increase”and “cessation of building”?
Building in Noaman – “informed” sources say there will be another terminal.
Bethlehem - Checkpoint 300: labourers returning from work. Transit is at the usual pace with no special delays. One of the two employees of Ari Company on the spot apparently got intoxicated with the power in his hands and delayed the entrance of people into the compound, and arranged them in line abreast. Afterwards they showed consideration and did let them in.
One man delayed, in conversation with a policeman: a watch was stolen from a Palestinian woman at a checkpoint, and the man was delayed because “he looked like the thief caught on the security cameras.” Of course there was no foundation to the accusation, but it’s not difficult to imagine his panic in the few minutes that he was held. We asked if the man was told why he was detained – naive question – of course not! The police enthusiasm at grabbing the suspect raised some questions...
A worker forgot, yesterday morning, his magnetic card at the inspection point. When he realised, he was told to come in the evening and the card would be given to him. In the evening they told him to come in the morning. In the morning they said come in the evening... We left a phone number, but heard nothing more from him, so the matter was probably iover.
We left at 18:00 when the traffic was very thin.