'Anin, Reihan, Shaked, Mon 9.1.12, Morning

Leah R., Anna N.S

Translator:  Charles K.

06:20  A’anin agricultural checkpoint
An especially cold day, few people going to work – only a few dozen.  The procedures are conducted in the front portion of the checkpoint.  A youth isn’t allowed through; he returns from whence he came.  A minute later he shows up holding some document which doesn’t satisfy the soldiers who send him back again.  A man coming through said they didn’t let him cross because his birth certificate wasn’t enough for the soldiers; they wanted him to bring a parent (he was 12-16 years old).

The children of the Bedouin family living at the foot of the checkpoint are excited.  There’s an English test today; the girls examine us, whether we can read English and perhaps even some Arabic.

07:00  Tura (Shaked) checkpoint
The soldiers arrive now at the checkpoint, which opens ten minutes later to people coming from the West Bank to the seam zone.  Most of those crossing to the West Bank are vehicles, pupils and students, functionaries and other workers.  The pupils come running, open their school bags, soldiers check and they go across.  Nothing special is happening.  The occupation routine!  Both the horse and its rider know what they have to do; everyone plays the game perfectly.

07:40 - 08:20  New Barta’a checkpoint
The lower parking lot is completely filled with Palestinian vehicles.  People coming from the West Bank enter the terminal without delay.  Everything seems to proceed peacefully.  The scanner doesn’t expose what people are feeling as they enter and leave.  We get hints from their comments when we say “Shalom” as they pass us:  “What peace?  Peace with whom?”

Trucks loaded with food wait on the road for their turn to be inspected.

A rainbow arcs across the sky but immediately changes its mind.  Heavy gray rain clouds cover the sky.  We hurry to pick up a father and his two small children to bring them to Rambam Hospital.  Another slight delay while the father’s identity is verified, and why didn’t he coordinate his trip ahead of time, and other questions that are asked very politely – but aren’t able to conceal the fact that the negotiation is being conducted between the ruler and the ruled.  And at the same time Israeli vehicles cross in both directions with a wave of the hand, and then disappear.