Huwwara, Sun 30.12.07, Afternoon
Translation: Tal H.
15:00 Za'tara/Tapuach Junction Checkpoint - empty of vehicles
In Huwwara's market we hear the grocer's report: recently, late on various nights, a colonist arrives in his pickup truck and throws havoc, smashing car windshields and even windows of local businesses such as the bank and the greengrocer's. People have appealed to the Border Patrol men that frequent the town who said they'd look into it and didn't do a thing. On our way home we spoke again with more people who confirmed the story and told of many more cases of such damages at the hands of the same colonist.
Burin/Yitzhar Junction CP - unmanned.
On our way back this evening - it is manned, keeping nearly 30 cars waiting in line.
15;15 Huwwara Checkpoint
Commander - officer, name unknown to us
DCO representative -A.
X-Ray Truck active
No sniffer dog
A detainee held in the concrete cell, his hands cuffed behind his back. Waiting for GSS interrogation, wanted for interrogation.
The checkpoint compound is festive with new flags and banners of the Golani infantry brigade now manning it.
Three checking posts active, large camera crew present, working for the Israeli Army spokesperson office. Making a film about the DCO. Their luck provided them with some action - the detainee being picked up for interrogation. Palestinians were amazed at the bustle and asked if some Hollywood feature was being filmed on site...
The special side line for women, children and elderly proceeds rapidly. And wonder of wonders, as soon as the film crew leaves, the pace slows down considerably and passage is at snailspace.
Soldiers are busy mainly fighting the bitter cold with loud, unceasing joking, playing around and merrymaking. Songs, shouts and squeals from one end of the compound to the other are mixed with the usual screeches of the Military Policewomen checking ID numbers against various lists.
Pedestrian traffic today is slighter than usual at this time of day.
Vehicles entering Nablus accumulate and some of the time are even inspected, unlike the usual routine.
Two young men tell us they were caught working in Israel and taken for interrogation to the Petah Tiqwa police station. There policemen confiscated a cellular phone of one of the two men, an act later denied. They were both handcuffed, and at their release, the policemen couldn't open the metal cuffs of one of them with the key, and had to cut the chain open. The two were then taken to the Kfar Qassem Checkpoint (Shaarei Shomron) and had to proceed on foot, without any money, and one of them with a steel cuff on each wrist...
The checkpoint emptied nearly completely by 5:30 p.m. We remained until after 6, waiting for our friends to return from Beit Furik Checkpoint, where drivers had been waiting for hours in line, in the bitter cold.