Awarta, Beit Furik, Burin (Yitzhar), Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), יום ה' 17.7.08, בוקר
Translation: Suzanne O.
"Mummy, I don't like being in this session", is the legend written up in Huwwara, near the roadblock.
There is a sizeable presence of civilian police and border police at the eastern side of the Sha'ar Shomron roadblock.
The traffic from Ariel is light.
The entrance to Marda is open; the barrier at Zeita is closed.
There is no queue at all from the direction either of Ariel or Huwwara.
The roadblock is still staffed by Air Force reservists. A bus arriving from Nablus is directed to the car park. We clocked 13 minutes until everyone was back on the bus. The passengers tell us that soldiers were active the whole night in Nablus and Balata and they took people away. When we ask who they say Fatah and Hamas, they are all people.
There is no activity at Beita Junction.
There is no army activity at Borin/Yitzhar.
There are very few cars at the entrance to the town. From afar we see a crowd at the exit.
The DCO representative, T., is present. The x-ray machine is also here but not the dog handler.
We go to the municipal offices to complain that the large rubbish bin has not been at the roadblock for two weeks now and the rubbish is endangering both those crossing and those working there. We followed an army car into the area. It turns out that only the management of the upper hill works here (the municipality offices are located at Barkan). Two young pious women wrapped up in duvets (the room is freezing cold) doze in the security room in front of two television screens. They promise to pass our request to the municipality offices. As we leave we meet the morning shift, an aggressive settler who declares, when she hears who we are: "I'm going to kill you". When we got into our car she came out of the building, came over to us determinedly (we thought she would spit at us) but she just hissed: "Don't you dare come in here again".
Only a few cars cross to and from Nablus, there is no back to back.
There are 7 cars in the queue to enter the town, very few pedestrians. The inspection of each vehicle is thorough. A tractor driver says that he has waited half an hour in the queue.
The commander explains to us that the soldiers are completing a 24-hour shift and he is concerned that they will make mistakes. They are all dead tired, it is better that they work slowly and not make mistakes.
Back at Huwwara
There are two detainees by the cell: a father and son who were shepherding a flock of goats near the Bracha fence. The settlers, it appears, called the security forces to arrest them both. The flock was left in the charge of the younger son, aged 10. The DCO representative explains that they will have to wait an hour to get their ID cards back. We telephone everybody we can and finally the commander agrees to reduce their punishment time. They are released in the direction of Nablus but we were not able to find out what will happen to the boy and the goats.
There are no queues.
At Sha'ar Shomron the number of police cars in the easterly direction has increased, the border police tell us that it is a routine inspection.