'Awarta, Beit Furik, Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), יום ה' 23.10.08, בוקר
Translation: Suzanne O.
The Golani Brigade has left and the Givati has taken their place, the atmosphere at the roadblocks is relaxed.
Sha'ar Shomron eastward is not staffed.
The entrance to Marda is open, the western side too, and the barrier to Zeita is in place.
There are a few cars from the direction of Ariel and less from the area of Huwwara.
Reservists staff the roadblock; they are still from the artillery corps. They are prepared to talk about the situation. A bus with its passengers is held up in the car park until all the documentation is inspected (again).
The Border Police are not present at the entrance to Beita.
Borin/Yitzhar: no activity.
There is heavy pedestrian traffic but almost no vehicles. There is no queue. Because of two incidents where acid was thrown the commander wants to distance the Palestinians from contact with his soldiers. The queue starts at the other side of the first turnstile and everyone has to stand outside the shed, exposed to the weather. The commander promised to consider the possibility of starting the queue at the first turnstile.
There are no detainees, the x-ray machine is working and the dog handler is not present. The work on the new ‘drain' has stopped but there is a lot of activity where the road is being widened to the east of the roadblock. The rumour is that when the work finishes cars will be permitted to enter Nablus. ID cards will be inspected, as in Za'atra, and the new and the old building will no longer be used.
There are just a few cars; the ‘cafe' is back in business after the festivals. Work continues at the new shooting range situated between Awarta and Huwwara camp.
A military jeep guards two settlers from Itamar waiting for a lift and hopes to trap Palestinians who have dared to drive on the Madison strip.
There is a short queue of cars wishing to enter the town and few pedestrians. The burned down ‘cafe' has been renovated but it is much more primitive than previously.
The soldiers permit us to stand by the checkpoint and, once again, we try to fathom the logic of inspecting the documents of those entering Nablus.
Back at Huwwara
It is still quiet; the car park is filling up and the coffee and food stalls are busy with no disruption. There are no detainees or prisoners.
There are no queues.
There is little traffic at Sha'ar Shomron.