Reihan, Shaked, Sun 10.7.11, Morning

Ruthy T., Hasida S. (reporting)


Tura-Shaked CP

This CP marks the separation of what appear to be two neighborhoods in one village – Daher el Malek and Tura. People go from one side of the fence to the other side for all kinds of reasons, such as studies, health, administrative affairs, banks, shopping, etc. This is the gate of 'everyday life'. Tura on the Palestinian side and Daher el Malek in the seamline zone. The fence leaves the Shahak industrial zone on the side of the seamline zone as well as a few settlements, the villages Umm-el Reihan and Barta'a – a- Sharkiyeh. I want to emphasize that Daher el Malek is not connected to any electric network, neither the Palestinian nor the Israeli. It only has its own generators.

The CP, which, according to the needs of the residents and within the limitations of the security budget – opens every morning at seven, and closes at ten. Afterwards, it opens again at twelve (I don't know until what time in the evening.)

We arrived at the CP a few minutes before seven. Usually at this time, the soldiers are already there and sometimes they have even begun to let people through. This time, the three gatesinfo-icon of the CP are shut and on the side of the seamline zone, there is no one at all. We looked over at the other side and we saw a few people waiting. The soldiers were nowhere to be seen. We called the DCO because we did not have the telephone number of the brigade. By then it was already seven twenty and 'nothing'. Nothing at all. We turned the car around in order to go and wake the soldiers and then we saw them approaching slowly and heavily, with their flak jackets and their full complement of equipment and their heavy shoes. One was even wearing a helmet. A woman soldier was carrying a green basket – perhaps a quick breakfast. And still another soldier came with a cup of coffee that he had not finished drinking. They climbed up slowly toward the CP. "We stayed here for the Sabbath. It was crazy. There were endless shifts of standing guard, and there was nobody around to wake us up." The CP was finally opened at seven thirty.

On the side of the seamline zone, there were already several people and two cars waiting. The elegant banker was already 'on pins and needles' and when those waiting took a few steps toward the gate of the CP, they were told sternly and in CP-Arabic to stand back. It was very uncomfortable. After some time, a hummer arrived with a woman driver and a woman officer. The officer calmed things down and organized matters.

The banker asked the soldiers to let those waiting to go to the West Bank through first "because we are in a hurry to go to work, and they are going for farming." And that is what was done. When they began to go out of the Palestinian area, it turned out that they too were in a hurry. One person, for example, was already an hour late to work in a firm at Shahak. That hour of work will be deducted from his salary of course. We said that this is the gate to everyday life, didn't we?


Barta'a-Reihan CP

We reached here after eight. Surprise: the construction of pipes that was bare for quite a long time, is now decorated with some silver funnels turned upside down. In our humble opinion- this is a novel architectural  invention which is incomprehensible. At the lower gate, people are entering steadily. We measured the time of passage --- about five minutes.  Private cars that entered for inspection at eight twenty have still not emerged at a quarter to nine and their passengers waited patiently on the bench on the rise to the sleeveinfo-icon. About seven cars loaded with goods and covered with blue plastic, are waiting their turn to enter for inspection. Under the shed trays of eggs are waiting, and several drivers are having a meal. Above, employers are waiting for the workers who come up from the sleeve. The hour is late and there is no pressure.