Beit Iba, Jit, Sun 11.11.07, Afternoon
Believe it or not, there really is an internet site called The Mother
of All Excuses Place. We wonder if the Occupiers of the Palestinian
Territories make use of this site, with enough changes to make its
name less politically correct for this macho part of the world. At
each and every checkpoint that we monitor and document, we hear
excuses for just about everything. Today's shift proved no exception.
Jit Junction 13:35
No checkpoint, as we've already been told in Nabil Elias.
Beit Iba 14:00
A "Zelda" (APC) pointing in the direction of Nablus, soldier poking
his head from the turret, gun in hand, stands on the far side of the
checkpoint. A high wire fence is being built, separating pedestrian
from vehicular traffic. Two turnstiles stand where pedestrians are to
be checked in the future. A bit of research into advertisements
for "pedestrian control needs" recommend plenty of "turnstiles to
solve your access control problems." But even "full security
turnstiles" have arms of 60 cms at a minimum. These that the
occupier puts up for Palestinians are no more than 45 cms.
Few people can squeeze through such a turnstile. Another disgrace in
Once again, there are a great many soldiers at Beit Iba. The invasion
of privacy continues unabated with two soldiers at the checking
table, burrowing into every bag or briefcase coming out of Nablus.
Even the shopping bags of young mothers with unhappy looking toddlers
at their side, on their way into Nablus, are thoroughly gone over.
Six soldiers at the central pedestrian checking area, and four
checking vehicles, oh so slowly. Happily, there aren't that many
vehicles to check, but, once again, the regular porter's cart is
thoroughly gone through (office supplies)! Pedestrians flow through
in a steady stream although only two of the three turnstiles are at
work . People going into the city and people exiting it have to pass
each other on the same walkway – until the building work is
completed. None going on today.
Of course, we're told, gratuitously, as there's no white line in
sight, or nowhere to stand in its vicinity, "Would you stand behind
the line please?"