Hamra (Beqaot), Tayasir, Fri 30.8.13, Afternoon
Translation: Bracha B.A.
11:45 – We crossed the Bezek Checkpoint.
Alon Road– Route 578
There are soldiers in the field and we see tents and flags.
Hamra Checkpoint 12:10
Two soldiers, one of whom is the commander, arrive and tell us that we are not allowed to stand where we are observing. The name "Duhifat" (Hebrew for the hoopoe bird) is written on their caps. We explain that this is our usual place. The traffic police vehicle arrives driven by a first sergeant named Eliyahu Bar Kalifa. He ordered us to stand under a shelter constructed of an old cargo container, which was stiflingly hot, and that he would fine us if we insisted on standing by the side of the road. When we asked for an explanation he said that we were in danger where we stood and that he was responsible for ensuring civilians' safety.
He continued to the position on the road. After fifteen minutes hour one of the soldiers and some policemen drove eastward towards a Palestinian car, which was evidently the reason for the policemen's arrival at the checkpoint. After a few minutes he came back extremely angry and stopped next to us. He insisted that the entire area around the checkpoint was off limits to civilians. We asked what rule we were breaking and he informed us that he would fine us without referring to any particular rule and referred us to the virtual police station.
We left at 13:10.
13:15 – Tayasir Checkpoint
Two soldiers approached us even before we got out of the car and gave us the usual explanations why we were not allowed to be there, from "this is a closed military zone" to "you are disturbing the soldiers". When they turned their backs on us and returned to their position we continued to our observation point. Soon two soldiers blocked the road in both directions. They informed us that they were blocking the road because we insisted on observing, and invited us to take as many photographs as we wanted, so we did. They continued to block the road even when we were next to our car. A taxi driver told us, "We told them that you were good." A military car brought lunch for the soldiers and they opened the roadblock.
We left at 13:40.
We drove back through the Bezek checkpoint at14:00.