Hizma, Jaba (Lil), Qalandiya
1. The trial of Ibrahim, the 15 year old boy from the Qalandiya refugee camp who’s jailed in the Russian Compound has been repeatedly delayed.
Because of the frequent postponements it’s impossible to know when the trial will be held, said Ibrahim’s brother who sells fruit at the exit from the checkpoint.
On the wall, near the brother’s cart, a new photograph of a new shahid from the refugee camp, below an older picture of a previous shahid from the refugee camp.
The proximity of the prisoner’s brother to the pictures of those who’d been murdered reminds me of what an acquaintance once said when we talked about a different youth who’d been arrested: “Now he’s in Ofer prison, at least they didn’t shoot him.”
2. The soldiers’ presence in and around the Jaba checkpoint creates traffic jams of vehicles coming from Ramallah.
The soldiers are members of the search and rescue unit, still traumatized by the hit and run attack at Rantis aimed at their comrades.
In addition to the soldiers, the corpse of the cat that was run over more than a week ago is still lying near the checkpoint; no one removed it.
Maybe “the Arab” (in the words of the commander last week) hadn’t come, and maybe he came but no one told him.
This explosive reality, in which the stinking corpse lies beside frightened, traumatized soldiers with itchy trigger fingers reflects a reality much broader than what’s true of this particular location.
3. “It’s a closure” said Zvi, the commander of the soldiers standing at the entrance to Hizmeh village, who stopped and inspected every vehicle seeking to enter, and allowed in only those who lived there, and ordered the others to turn around.
“They completely blocked the two other entrances. It’s been like this for a month. They keep opening and closing it” said the villagers.
Zvi confirmed his words and emphasized that he’s actually very humane; see, he allowed entry to a vehicle delivering medicine to the pharmacy in the village, nor did he forbid the delivery of eggs.
“Because there are people in this village planning attacks, and we’ve already discovered knives here,” Zvi explained the rationale for the closure.
No, he didn’t know what international law says about collective punishment – so I told him.
4. When the State’s Attorney instructs the Comptroller of the Israel Police to compensate me for detaining me illegally, that’s additional proof that the police flagrantly violate the law they’re supposed to uphold.
Once again, I’m grateful to Attorney Talya Ramati who represented me and supported me and accompanied me throughout the entire process.
I don’t know whether national police headquarters will notify Ami Shagar, the Qalandiya police commander, and his subordinates, of the State’s Attorney’s decision – the same Ami who not so subtly tried to make a deal with me, that if I do what he asks, he’ll decide how much he’ll let do what I have a legal right to do.
I refused the deal, as I always do, and oppose deals and agreements with representatives of the regime, but I intend to keep with me a copy of the State’s Attorney’s letter to show it to them if those police officers there or anywhere else harass me, and I invite anyone who wishes to use it as she sees fit.
By the way – I chose to sue the system itself, not Menashe Hai personally, the policeman who had detained me two years ago, and Ami, the precinct commander who backed Menashe up and took responsibility for the detention.