Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Sun 25.8.13, Morning
Translation: Yael Bassis-Stusent
07:00 – 08:10 Tura – Shaked checkpoint
We stayed longer than usual. Shouting and arguing were heard from the Tura side of the checkpoint. It was hard to understand what was going on. Only when people came out we were told that there was pushing and struggling at the line. One even showed us marks from the pushing. We also heard the shouting of women who were runing towards the single house at the end of an area which is a part of Tura, where they own olives groves, an area which can be reached without going through the checkpoint. The soldiers at first did not understand that but later all was sorted out. Older school children go through the sleeve but are not stopped for inspection. One teacher from Tura had crossed over into the Seam Line zone and is now waiting for transportation. She teaches first and fourth grade. There is no work at Tura, but at Barta'a there is. Every day she crosses over and waits for transportation. It appears that today she'd be late for work.
By 08:00 there was quiet. All had gone through.
On our way to the Barta'a checkpoint we picked up two hitchhikers. One was on his way to the Rihan settlement and the other to Barta'a. The Israeli said that he lived in what "you call a terror settlement". We did not argue. The Palestinian, who appeared to be the Israeli's friend, said that Rihan was built on Palestinian land, but "Why is it important? This land belongs to us all. We all sons of Abraham, our forefather. And we ought to live together. To eat, drink and be friends." He lives in Tura and own a small grocery store in Barta'a.
08:25 Ya'abed-Dotan checkpoint
The yellow metal arm of the gate blocks the side entrance to ya'abed. In a short distance from there a Jeep hides in the trees, in case someone might throw stones? The checkpoint appears vacant. S. the Beduin gallops through the checkpoint in his vehicle. He tells us that soldiers arrive only at o8:30. And sure enough at that exact time two soldiers did show up. Apparently they came out of the pillbox. Even at this time they hardly stopped any vehicle that came from the direction of Ya'abed. Only one cab stopped for a few minutes.
08:40 Barta'a checkpoint
Earlier we saw about 9 cars loaded with goods awaiting inspection. When we returned and drove by, there were 10 cars in line . On the way to the inspection post there is a bulldozer digging, apparently for renovation of the sewage line. We are here to stay!
The lower car park is full. Passage at the terminal is swift. A group of workers in black shirts that we'd watched coming down are at the end of the exit sleeve by the time we've parked at the upper car park.