Beit Iba, Wed 14.11.07, Morning
A routine shift.
Beit Iba, 7.25 – 9.15
10 cars in both directions. The drivers wait 15 minutes. The soldiers check without haste, almost lazily. A bus driver hoots for us to come to him urgently and says, " For us this is morning and in the morning everyone is in a hurry. Tell the soldiers that if I do not get the students to university they will miss their lessons. Can you do something? " But we do see that there is an improvement in that the passengers do not have to alight from the buses because the pedestrians go into Nablus and are checked randomly. The pressure will be in the afternoon as the exit demands careful checking of parcels and IDs. It is to be noted that there is a representative of the DCO here who speaks Arabic.
The Nablus radio says that the checkpoint of Beit Iba is to be closed to trucks which will have to go to Awarta. The DCO representative does not know about this and it sounds to him unreasonable but to us this lack of logic precedes the deed. We remember periods which trucks were sent to the crossroads of Jit though the village of Sara. Today this road is closed but in the last months there is hardly any movement through Beit Iba because of the difficulty of getting permits for any type of vehicle. Most of the cars bypass the checkpoint through El Bidan and this makes the journey much longer but there the passage is open. So why keep up this harassment dafke on the main road. ( a rhetorical question).
Qusin - 9.30
For a few weeks the passage to the village from the western direction is open and one does not need permission from the soldiers to visit. We were received pleasantly. The view is beautiful but the road is filled with barbed wire so as to guard the separation from Nablus.