Azzun, Beit Iba, Wed 19.12.07, Afternoon
14.15 At Azzun two weeks ago there was a barrier of cement but today there is none. A Hummer with soldiers is now there. At the crossroads of Jit there are no people or cars. Zecharia had asked us to stop there and we received a document from two children on which was written that the part of road 55 where the farmers of Jiot pass to the lands is permitted for those living in the area.
15.00 At Beit Iba we found Zecharia waiting with two detainees and the document was to be used to free them.
We spoke to the commander and he said that they had been detained not because of road 55 but because they had been on an army road. But at that moment he got a phone call which enabled him to free the men. Little traffic at the checkpoint and all is calm and the traffic moves steadily. We spoke to the commander, Yaakov. We were very impressed at his openness and the way he solved problems quietly and with thought. This is not usually what we find at this checkpoint.
Tammie asked him what policy the army would follow if there were no checkpoints. He said they would build schools, invest in education. There are also such people at the checkpoints.
A case which he solved. 3 brothers came to him and said that their younger brother was not allowed to pass with them as their parents were not with them. They had visited their aunt in Nablus and wanted to go home to Tulkarm.
He told them to call the boy but when they wanted to go on their way the same soldier stopped them but the commander told him to let them pass. The soldier tried to argue but to no avail. Quietly in a way which is characteristic of this commander he ordered him to do as he was told and the soldier had no coice even though he said he did not understand. It is obvious that problems could be solved if there were only more commanders such as he. He uses his discretion, humanity and takes responsibility. All honour to him.
There was a representative of the DCO there but he did not do much.
16.00 We left Beit Iba and found Ababta empty and those who did arrive there passed with no problems and so it was at A-Ras. We left flowers for the teacher at Jubara for the holiday.