Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Te'enim Crossing, Sun 19.8.12, Morning
Leora Shamir, Annelien Kisch (reporting)
04:00 We were perfect on time and could at first not understand the total silence and desertion we met at the area around and in the terminal, until it dawned on us that “Id el Fitr” was still “on” which meant a complete closure of this entrance to Israel.
We got out of the car and enjoyed for a few moments this unusual phenomenon of almost poetic stillness. But…. lo and behold, if anyone was worried we took great risks walking around this deserted place. Big Brother kept his protective eye on us and a guardian angel in the shape of an hummer approached us almost immediately. What a good feeling that the four IDF-“passengers” of this vehicle - surely worrying about our safety - kept following us as far as the “Te’enim” crossing where we wanted to inquire about the well-being of those Palestinians who did want to enter Israel. When we got out of our car there too, we were questioned about the nature of our visit. Machsom Watch did not mean anything to them….
”We observe and report about what we see at…. what do we call this….border?... and sometimes question the usefulness of these checkpoints”------ “Can you understand why you are being checked at the supermarket, at the airport?”-------“Ah, sure, supermarket, that’s where we are, I forgot……”--------
The girl-soldier at the crossing felt very sorry for the soldiers who had to cope these days with the much busier traffic than normal. She though, loved her task there and would like to do this work as a steady job: “Only very special cases can pass here during “Id el Fitr”, no work-permits or stam permits are being given”….