Beit Furik, Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Mon 17.3.08, Morning
Translation: Suzanne O.
There are four inspection lanes for vehicles going south. The pace is reasonable. A bus is sent to the car park for a personal inspection of documents. Another commercial vehicle is also sent for a thorough inspection. The dog shift arrives and goes into action. An attractive female soldier explains to another one that she should ask the two passengers to alight and to take out any food and the Koran so that, according to her, the dog does not damage anything of value to them.
Another female soldier inspects the documents of the 50 bus passengers thoroughly and slowly. It takes 31 minutes until they are able to get back on the bus and continue on their way.
The car park is not full. The roadblock is not crowded. We decide to stand where we can see and hear what goes on as the soldiers deal with those crossing (i.e.: across the white line). Although a soldier remarks on it we continue to stand there. A short while later, perhaps we have been standing and observing for about a quarter of an hour, we witnessed a scene in which a youngster talks back to a soldier in a way she does not like. She repeats what has been said to the soldiers around her and one of the soldiers asks her to send the young man to him for a body inspection. He puts the youngster up against the wall, with his hands up, and inspects him from top to toe without missing a centimetre of his body. It is obviously done to teach him a lesson and show him what happens if he does something that an occupier does not like. Meanwhile the soldier (Nofar) realises that we are standing close to her and decides to close the roadblock until we move back behind the white line. The soldiers immediately crowd round and the roadblock commander arrives. We explain that the nature of our task at the roadblock necessitates us being able to see what is going on and that is not possible from behind the white line. The commander, who is responsible for the roadblock closure, claims that there is an agreement among all ranks that we are forbidden to cross the white line. We do not give in but obviously we are not going to insist as we see that we are causing additional hold ups for the Palestinians. A few moments later we leave.
There are no cars queuing and few pedestrians either.