Barta'a/Reikhan,Tura/Shaked, Ya'bad/Mevo Dotan, Thursday 28.03.13 morning

Neta Golan, Shula Bar (photographing and reporting)


Translator:  Charles K.


06:10  A’anin checkpoint

Based on how few people are coming through the checkpoint it appears as if the occupation is operating particularly slowly today, and in fact people were complaining.  Inspections were conducted in the middle of the checkpoint; we could barely see and weren’t able to hear what was going on there.  A resident of A’anin came out and angrily said that his friend had been turned back even though he had a valid crossing permit.  We telephoned the DCO; they checked his ID number and his permit was, in fact, valid.  They promised to take care of it.  In the meantime we dared to enter the checkpoint and before we were thrown out we tried to determine what was going on.  We were told that the person presented an ID and crossing permit that didn’t belong to him (based on the photograph).  We weren’t able to contact the man because we were given an incorrect phone number.  The checkpoint and its surroundings are clear of refuse, the work of the cleaning contractor.


07:00  Tura-Shaked checkpoint.  The money pours out.

A group of exuberant pupils and a few adults already wait at the entrance to the locked fenced corridor (in the photo) leading to the checkpoint, and then out to Tura, the West Bank, Area A.  An officer arrives ten minutes later to unlock it.  The children run through without inspection, the adults with cars show their documents and return to their vehicles.  The crossing seems somewhat slow here as well.  We again note that this small checkpoint is filled to overflowing with all kinds of innovations intended to increase military-security efficiency, but which mostly give the impression of unrestrained spending.


07:40  Yabed-Dothan checkpoint. 

The town of Yabed and the settlement of Mevo Dothan observe one another and overlook the Dothan Valley from high on the hills.  The narrow road to and from Yabed is blocked and locked by a heavy iron bar.  The occupier’s heavy hand.

Three soldiers at the checkpoint are practicing some kind of defensive and offensive manoeuvers (“fire, fire, fire”), creating a line of cars in both directions (ten from the east, three from the west); the drivers are annoyed.  The exercise concludes one minute after we arrive; the Palestinians, who are certain that it’s due to our magic touch, greet us respectfully.  A driver stops beside us and says angrily that the exercise lasted a long time (“half a day”), that they’re delayed again and again, everywhere, and anyway “Our entire lives are now just inspections and more inspections!”  A soldier approached us, asking that we not detain cars in the middle of the road.  One of the soldiers is religious, one of those “sharing the burden.”  Traffic flows in both directions with almost no inspections.  They’ve begun renovating this checkpoint also:  they’ve added many concrete barriers, opened an unpaved route parallel to the road, painted white whatever doesn’t move, added another transparent inspection booth, etc. 

We surveyed the Reihan checkpoint as we drove by.  It operated like clock