Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Sun 14.4.13, Morning
Translation: Bracha B.A.
Photo: Children waiting for the sleeve to open to cross the checkpoint
07:00 – Shaked – Tura Checkpoint
We arrive together with the soldiers who approach slowly on foot. The gate for vehicles is wide open and children Um Reihan and Dahar Al Malk who go to school in Tura or Yaabed are already waiting next to the pedestrian gate at the entrance to the sleeve. The gate opens at 07:03 and the school principal from the Yaabed School and students cross together with them. The principal of the school in Um Reihan and his secretary arrive from the other side. People tell us that they have been recently forbidden to cross. One person tells us that he was allowed to cross anyway in order to make arrangements.
A young officer offers us drinks and tells us that he admires us – not for what we represent, but because we older women are willing to continue to come out and stand at the checkpoints when they open early in the morning. He wants to learn more about the organization that we represent when we come to the checkpoints. Like all soldiers whom we talk with, he does not know that the fence and the checkpoint are standing on land that does not belong to Israel and that the military activities in which he is taking part here at this "daily life" checkpoint where he is in direct contact with a civilian non-Israeli population, is actually occupation. Like all the other soldiers, he refuses to believe us. What more is this than intentional indoctrination?
08:30 – Reihan – Barta'a Checkpoint
We drive down to the Palestinian parking lot that is filled with cars. There N. is waiting for us - a man with heart problems who is cared for by six disabled children. He receives a lot of financial aid and many packages of used clothing. Unfortunately he is very needy - repairing the wheelchair of one of his children costs more than 13,000 Shekels. He delivers a number of colorful curses against the Palestinian Authority who has not offered him any help at all.
Ten loaded trucks are waiting on the road to be checked. One truck is loaded with fresh green pods of chick peas with delicious seeds inside.