Beit Furik, Huwwara, Tue 8.7.08, Afternoon

Fathiya A., Chana K. (reporting)
Seriously? Does this make us safer?

14:10 Huwwara Checkpoint

Almost full insistence on exposure of abdomen-thigh. Waiting time half an hour. Impression from looking inside, that the transients are few, is misleading. From the side the crowding can be seen. Passage is slow. Women wait, standing. As will be remembered, there is no point to a bench since, within weeks, the construction will end, and the soldiers also aren't sitting.

Very hot.

A cripple on crutches progresses along the long walk, while stopping occasionally to lean - from fatigue.

The "Women in Green" flags add an air of encouragement of the holy work of the army at the checkpoint.

14:50 - a machine for checking large baggage arrives, but does not make a significant difference to the pace.

15:50 - an elderly man is made to stand next to the isolation pen ("bingo" - wanted according to his name). In the DCO he was promised that his name would be removed from the list of people to be detained. The promise still stands, day by day.

16:05 Beit Furik Checkpoint

Checkpoint empty but noisy: the radio is playing, and a woman soldier barks "imshi" at each individual transient.

We were seen from a distance and asked to evacuate the checkpoint. When we asked to remain under the shady roof (it was very hot), the woman shouted: "It's not my fault that there's sun!" We succeeded in remaining at the end. The local commander (more courteous than the woman soldier) admitted that at Huwwara we can stand closer, but the custom here is different. Palestinians who sought to stand in the shade were ordered 50 more metres back.
A year ago, three of us were accused at Ariel Police Station of "blocking the field of vision" of the soldiers at the deserted Beit Furiqk Checkpoint.

The orders to vehicle owners are flexible: sometimes the soldier allows a driver to continue, while another who doesn't argue enough, is ordered to offload and reload his scrap. In another vehicle, which waited quite a while in the heat, the driver was not required to get out or reboard. In another vehicle, the sheep that were waiting quite a long time in the heat were not forced to go out.

We left