Sansana, South Hebron Hills, Thu 3.7.08, Morning
On the morrow of the bulldozer attack in Jerusalem we decided to stay out of Hebron.
06:30 - Sansana Checkpoint
The checkpoint is empty, the workers have all crossed and the few who still arrive cross over at once. We got a present - 10 delicious hot falafels, and continued on our way.
It looks like the army has opened the way to the village of Karameh - The gigantic boulder has been shifted and the road is smooth. On the other hand, it blocked the way out of Samoa again.
All along the way we notice how few Palestinian cars are about and wonder if it's the early hour or perhaps, after yesterday, people are too afraid and only venture from their home if they absolutely must.
A border police jeep is driving before us all the way from Hebron and stops by Shuyuch. We stop by it. Three soldiers come out and a short conversation ensues. They are very cynical and their contempt for us is manifest. We try to reply civilly and keep our distance.
Here too traffic - pedestrian in this case - is sparse.
At about 07:30 the border police soldiers detain three young men, then another three and lastly a seventh and relay their details for authorization to cross. After 15 minutes all seven are allowed on their way.
Over the hour of our stay they detained a few tens of men, mostly young, and released them after a check of about 15-20 minutes.
By way of attracting their attention the soldiers whistle to the Palestinians crossing, as they might to a dog. Some (the brave) ignore the whistle at which point the soldiers have no choice but to address them verbally, or they would not stop for inspection.
Their attitude to the Palestinians is blunt - by a wave of the hand they summon this, waive the other. Their arrogance knows no bounds. Their intonation oozes hatred and contempt. The driver of the jeep puts on music on his mobile and suddenly instead of a military post the atmosphere is that of a class party.
The soldiers are brimming with hatred and holy fury. They refer to yesterday's events. One of them repeats several times "burn them all". We document the scene on video. One of the soldiers wants to know if we have a site where he can watch the pictures. We give him the address at which he says that he'll give it to his mum so she can watch and be proud of him. I voice my doubts - what mother would pride herself on a son whistling at people as if they were dogs. He tells me disgustedly that he can't speak Arabic. That's what he says, but the whistling stops.
08:30 - Just as we mean to get into our car Ofer Ohana appears with his camera and begins his usual foolish harangue telling us to go join our friends in East Jerusalem. This time we decide not to rise to the profound dialogue with Ofer and we leave.
On the way back we notice that the dirt path between Samoa and Tuwani has been blocked with piles of gravel.