Hebron, Mon 19.3.12, Morning
Translator: Charles K.
We hoped to be able to continue the standard, “boring” chronicle of the occupation, that we’d only have the ordinary despair to report - but that’s not what happened.
The Kfir brigade has come to Hebron. Its soldiers fill every corner of the city, enabling the settlers to live their lives normally at the expense of denying the rights of everyone else.
For example – something that hit us every time, even though it’s nothing new –
An elderly man limped through the Tarpa”t checkpoint. He began walking up the road to Tel Rumeida, carrying sacks of pitas. He walked with difficulty. The steep road isn’t easy for young people either. We stopped and gave him a ride home, not far from the martyrs’ cemetery… “Is it like this every day?” we ask. “Of course,” he answers. “How else?”
There’s no easy way for someone who lives near the settlers to bring home pitas. Only they are permitted to speed through in their cars. The elderly, the handicapped, pregnant women, little children, Palestinians – let them walk. Who cares?
Shuhadah Street begins at the Pharmacy checkpoint. Alleys between the buildings have been blocked to force everyone to pass through the checkpoint.
There’s a small mosque, people gathered for the noon prayer. We stopped when we saw a squad of soldiers surrounding three men and questioning them. What happened?! The soldier answers that someone threw stones. “One of those on their way to prayers?” No, someone on the other side of the wall the army built. So they pulled out the muezzin and a few other people for questioning. Our arrival disrupted something; the situation seemed about to explode.
The soldiers see us and speak to him “nicely.” They only ask questions, no hands. They take the muezzin to one side and continue to interrogate him. We stay to watch.
Meanwhile the officer and more soldiers arrive. They keep asking the muezzin questions. Then they climb onto the barrier, scan the entire area and decide to allow those who were being interrogated to return to the mosque. They didn’t find anything, didn’t see anyone, and they haven’t a reason to arrest anyone.
That’s that; we continued our patrol.
Is it only our imagination that if we hadn’t been there the soldiers would have behaved completely differently?!
An ordinary day in Hebron.