Awarta, Beit Furik, Burin (Yitzhar), Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Thu 27.3.08, Afternoon
14.21 - 14.35 The crossroads of Ariel
Where there are 2 Hummers and 2 soldiers on guard.
The gate at Marda is open. At Zeita big cement blocks close the entrance and the iron gate is empty.
At the checkpoint of Za'tara
3 car, 3 soldiers and one checking area. From Nablus are 33 cars and a police car and two checking areas.
At Beita we see that the road to the market is open. Afterwards one of the ecumenical workers tells us that there are many dust blockades which a resident tells us had been removed and we did not check.
Burin/Yitzhar is not manned.
A boy from Beita is in the isolation. He got his ID a month ago and the commander says that he tried to take a device through which he describes as a firecracker with some bullets of an AM 16. Later when we have spoken to the centre about the boy N. corrects us saying that he did not say that it was a device. The commander says it was a rifle bullet with a wick attached to it. The commander says that the sapper exploded it before we came. The ecumenical workers is told by phone that the media said a boy with an explosive device had been caught at Huwwara and the checkpoint closed. We see it is working.
When one of us goes in the direction of the isolation, the commander, second lieutenant E. screams "Get the hell away from here. Don't you dare go near." The DCO supports him. While we were there we did not see the boy so as to know if he were handcuffed and if he had been given anything to drink. We spoke to his father who was standing close to us as he had been informed by people that his son was arrests and with him a relation and two friends. All had had their IDs taken. When we tried time and again to find out when they would get these back we were told that besides the boy there were no people detained at the checkpoint. It seems that according to N. those who have their IDs taken from them are not detained and because they cannot move away they are called "stuck." A detainee is someone who is waiting to be investigated.
At 16.11 one of those "stuck" gets his ID back and at 17.45 two more do so.
At 19.00 the father phones to say that he got his ID. Because there was constant communication with the centre the commander had been ordered to free those "stuck." Now we phoned the centre to give them the good news that the father had been freed. A. as we are told by the center. It is important to note that when we turn to T. at the DCO the handling of matters is to the point and efficient. The boy was taken in the evening to the Ariel police station for questioning and freed at 24.30.
There were many people at the checkpoint, about 100 in the shed and we were told that there was a waiting period of more than an hour. Students going home for the weekend. Only 2 checking areas. When we ask why there are not three second lieutenant E. again screams at us "Get away from here. You are all disgusting" and some other rantings. Later another post was open but not continuously. A humanitarian line where the DCO B. stand for most of the time but does not cooperate with us.
There is an x-ray device for baggage and we are told by the ecumenical representative that there are 13 cars waiting to exit Nablus but no pressure of those going in.
15.46 Beit Furik.
No congestion and no tension but we are met by the commander with our car being sent off from its usual parking place and then he starts to speak and does not stop even though we have not said a word. He educates us about the security aspects with all the argument and around him stand his obedient soldiers. We met the strangest lot of soldiers.
A taxi is detained. It drove on the Madison road and a military policewomen screams at us not to go near him. The commander says he will be there will 17.00 and he is not allowed to speak to those who are "stuck."
16.11 We go back to Huwwara where we are told that there is pressure at Za'tara.
Burin/Yitzhar is not manned.
Za'tara 27 cars, 3 checking posts and 8 in another direction.
Zeita where the entrance is closed and where 3 Hummers stand on the main road next to the fence of Marda.
At the end we have this question. Is there a point in complaining about the shrieking and cusring and vulgar Er. He actually shouted at us that he wanted us to complain about him to the brigade commander. Maybe we should?