Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Mon 12.5.08, Morning
Translation: Jonathan M.
06:40 CP 300
There is a blockade in anticipation of Bush’s visit, therefore there are hardly any vehicles.
Quiet as usual
07:40 Etzion DCO
There are a number of people waiting. They tell us that there have come and gone a few times and still hadn’t had their requests fulfilled.
People complained that soldiers at the southern checkpoint held up a pregnant woman for two and a half hours on her way to the clinic. In addition, they hold up girls on the way to school. They have to cross route 60 on their way. There is a jeep parked there and the soldiers hold up the women on their way to university. They also examine their cell phones. The road is dangerous; the traffic light that has been promised many months ago has still not been installed.
We met a man driving a Mitsubishi truck with an unusual front bumper – it was a special design of the factory. A policeman said that the bumper was illegal and wrote him a ticket. He also confiscated the man’s license. The man later called us to say that he simply got a new license. Very innovative.
11:00 Etzion DCO
Close to 40 people were in the waiting room. We are told that close to 50 people have applied for a magnetic card. The pace is reasonable, but still, waiting for upward of 3 hours does not really help anyone. We were approached by a woman who told us that her boss had a problem. He owned a company for car batteries. The batteries contained acid, and since he was GSS restricted he did not get his license renewed. He was told that if he would cooperate with the GSS they would renew his license.