'Anabta, Ar-Ras, Jubara (Kafriat), Wed 28.5.08, Afternoon
The traffic is scarce. The soldiers act reasonably (at the given situation).
14:40 – At the Figs Gate about 15 vehicles are waiting to enter Israel.
The soldiers open the gate for us right away.
14:50 – The Schoolchildren's Gate, where two bored soldiers are standing, is empty.
There is a change. On the road, north of the checkpoint, there are big rocks that force the cars to wind their way before they reach the checkpoint. We ask why the rocks have been placed there and the answer we get is "because one car slipped away" (it's not quite clear where to and also where from the car could slip away). I took a picture of the rocks and I'll enclose it if I can.
Here, too, the traffic is extremely thin. The commander, Ro'ee, with whom we talk, is OK. A woman dog trainer (without a dog) refuses to tell us her name. She asks why we are here and we tell that we observe and report what happens at the checkpoints. She wants to know if we judge the soldiers and our answer is we don't.
Sara explains that don't go to observe the checkpoints that are on the border of Israel, only those that are inside the West Bank. The soldier says that this is something she doesn't talk about and leaves the place.
15:10 – Since the place is almost deserted we leave and go back to Jubara gate. The line at the Figs Gate checkpoint at the entrance to Israel has grown longer and the number of vehicles in line is now 25.
We sound the horn so the soldiers will open the gate for us to leave Jubara. No one responds. We call Tami to ask her to help and suddenly – probably as a result of it – the commander shows up. Waving his hands to show his helplessness, he says that a policeman took the key and drove away with it, adding that it will take 15 minutes until he comes back. We wait about 20 minutes.
15:30 – The key is here and we are free.
15:40 – Empty on both sides. The few cars pass immediately.
We leave for Beit Iba.