'Anabta, Ar-Ras, Jubara (Kafriat), יום ב' 5.5.08, אחה"צ
14:00 – At the entrance to Jubara, gate 753, stands a bus of schoolchildren who come back from school. All the children are taken out of the bus and a military policeman gets on to check it. The soldier at the checkpoint doesn't know the reason but presumes that perhaps an alert has been called. The military policeman gets off the bus and tells the schoolchildren they can get on and the bus continues into the village.
14:15 – Four youths are standing on the eastern side of the road with their back to the checkpoint. The contents of their car trunk are lying on the road and a woman soldier checks the car thoroughly. When the check is done, the documents are returned to them. They put their belongings back into the car and go on their way. A woman dog trainer and a dog are here but we haven't seen them in action. In the meantime, up the road at the exit from Tulkarm, the line is getting longer. A taxi is approaching the checkpoint and the soldier instructs the driver to go back to the end of the line. When it gets to the checkpoint again, the soldier takes the documents for inspection and tells the driver to wait. An elderly passenger calls us, enraged, and says that the taxi was sent back because the driver dared to blow the horn. The man turns to me "Tell him, is it right?" Offence and humiliation are discernible in his voice. We ask ourselves who would give the soldier the authority to treat an Israeli driver, even the most insolent, in the same way.
It is striking how the power given to young people aged 19 to keep us safe, so to speak, is abused and turned into a means to control, for control's sake, embittering the life of people and having nothing to do with our safety.
14:30 – We are waiting next to the locked gate of Jubara and blowing the horn but no one comes to open it. We ask a policeman who is standing at the gate to ask the soldiers to open the gate if he goes towards the checkpoint. His response is that it is not his job and that we shouldn't have entered. In the mean time, a soldier comes and opens the gate for us.
14:40 – We buy coffee from the coffee seller just to let him earn a few shekels. He wants to give us the coffee free. However, when we strike a conversation with him, thanks to Bil'ha's Arabic that little by little comes back to her, he tells us that his wife has cancer and shows us that he, too, has some tumors under the skin. Every doctor appointment costs IS 120.00 and he scarcely has the money to feed and dress his children. Food and clothing items can help him (for the information of MW observers).
The traffic into Tulkarm is streaming without delays. Random inspections.