Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Wed 30.9.09, Morning

Ziona Or, Smadar Translator: Charles K



We arrived at 03:50; it’s completely dark; people are already waiting at the turnstile.

About 60 male and female laborers are there.

We didn’t go to the checkpoint because of Yom Kippur.

The boys selling coffee told us that yesterday there were many men and women here.

The powerful projectors light up the entrance to the installation.

We hear the guard calling to us in Hebrew over the loudspeaker,

“Good morning to the Machsom Watch ladies.”

We are amazed at the nauseating “good manners” and the “relationship” that’s developed with the guards. 

04:30  The turnstiles open.  The coffee sellers tell us that yesterday they opened at 05:00.

04:40  The turnstiles close.  The laborers wait, not entering.

04:50  The turnstiles open and about 60 laborers enter.

04:45   A Hummer appears, drives near where we’re standing and doesn’t stop.

People on line are impatient; the turnstiles open and close intermittently.

05:20  The turnstiles are closed.  We called the humanitarian office which promised to find out the reason for the delays.

05:45  The turnstiles open.

05:56  A line of some 100 men and women; the turnstiles are closed.

The laborers complain that things got worse this week; the installation didn’t open on time and they were late to work.

06:10  Two staff persons from the installation, not in uniform, came over to us.

El’ad, the manager of operations, and another man asked us not to pass the fence.

06:15  Most of the laborers entered.

About 10 laborers came back for the usual reasons – permissions; hand prints; etc.

06:20  We left.