'Anin, Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Mon 3.6.13, Morning
Lea R., Anna N.Sh.
06:10 - Agricultural Checkpoint Aanin (214) – opens twice weekly
We arrived at the same time as a military hummer with 3-4 officers in it. The soldiers are already at the checkpoint, at the middle gate towards the village Aanin. We tried to start a conversation with one of the officers in the vehicle who refused to introduce himself. We wanted to inquire about the destiny of the shepherd from the village Tura and his herd, who after years are still not allowed to pass through the checkpoint because “the sheep do not have a permit”. We received a short answer: “These are the regulations”. We were told as well to turn to the officer on duty at the Advanced Command Post each time we would like to file a complaint. This way they apparently wanted to stop us from harassing P., the District Coordination officer.
The hummer enters the checkpoint and the people begin to pass through. They all wear worn out and frayed clothes and do not carry any bags, so the passage continues at a reasonable pace with no delays. (Reminder: holders of an agricultural permit who want to go to their lands that are held confined within the seamline zone are not allowed to pass through to their lands if they are dressed too neatly, according to the opinions and tastes of the soldiers.)
6:30 – By now, about 30 people have passed, while another 50 are still waiting. Most of the passers are about 40 years old, though there are younger ones as well.
A repeating complaint: Children are not being allowed to pass through the checkpoint together with their parents, even if they show the papers that prove they are their children (birth certificate and an identity card of one of the parents). In the long summer vacation many parents would want to bring along their children to work at the olive groves, and here we have a new problem, after the old one (wardrobe) seem to have been “solved”.
06:40 - Many are still waiting. The passers report that except for a few young children no one returned back to the village today.
Ahmed passes with his tractor. He has still not been able to revoke the prohibition to pass with his tractor at (the very far away) Tura checkpoint, although he needs more than two days of work at his large pieces of land that are right next to the Aanin checkpoint on the occupied side. Except for routine work and ploughing (for which he needs the tractor), he must guard the trees from the pasturing cows that damage them. His biggest pleasure would be to go to the olive groves in the morning and return home in the evening, as a normal farmer – but no: only the military decides whether to allow or forbid, and the military decides to forbid the tractor’s entry. Why? For no reason!
07:10 – Tura-Shaked Checkpoint
We meet again the polite officer in the military hummer that is never helpful. He does stop to say hello, but immediately announces that he is in a hurry… before we bother him with difficult questions and waste his precious time that is dedicated to Israel’s security.