Beit Iba, Jit, Tue 2.12.08, Afternoon

Observers: 
Nurit Y. (guest), Reba B., Nur B. (reporting and photographing)
Dec-2-2008
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Afternoon

The shift documenting the area south of Nablus was cancelled due to illness, so we went
there also.   It was good we did, because we could document the many changes
that have been made to the physical layout of the checkpoints throughout the
area.  At Beit Furik they may be far-reaching.  We should add that there’s no
evidence here of the high alerts that led to road closures in Tel Aviv this morning.

14:35 

The taxi drivers report that hinged steel barriers, like those now
under construction farther along the road on which we’re standing, have also
been built at Sara and at Kufur Hars.  They afraid that portion of the road
will be closed to Palestinian traffic, and they’ll only be able to use Route
60, which is far away and steep (and, it should be added, where the Shavei
Shomron checkpoint is located).  Their apprehensions were strengthened by their
inability to get answers from any authorized source on what’s going to happen.

At the checkpoint – two soldiers chasing a Palestinian away from the
area of the checkpoint.  “You’re not allowed to be here,” they tell him, “We’re
treating you with respect; respect us also.”  To us, who’ve just arrived, they
say, “What’s happening – is someone making a movie?  Go stand in your
designated square.”

Pedestrians-

No traffic at all entering Nablus.

Leaving – Women and elderly men go through the line off to the side by
displaying their ID cards.  Two lanes for the young men.  They remove watches
and belts before going through the metal detector, pass their ID cards and hand
baggage for inspection through a small window to a soldier sitting in a
fortified position.  On the other side of the checkpoint they can be seen
returning their belongings to their bags, putting their belts back on.  While
we were there, one woman was taken to a cell to be frisked.  The soldiers are
very hostile.  It’s their checkpoint, and no one’s going to tell them what to
do.  When a large group of people on foot gathers at the line off to the side,
the soldiers tap some of them on the shoulder and yell “get back.”  Reba
reported to A. at the humanitarian center on the soldiers’ inappropriate
behavior.

Vehicle traffic - one lane entering the city, two leaving.  Documents
and permits are inspected.  The vehicles approach the booth when the soldier
waves his hand to give permission.

The soldiers are also very hostile to us.  “You stand where you belong,
do you know what I did to come here?  I’m guarding your homes; you have some
nerve.”  Later, regarding Reba, “Her, she won’t calm down until they kill a
member of her family,”  And, “One day they’ll be sitting in the cafeteria and
go flying through the air.”  One soldier says to another, “Forget it, just
photograph them,” and they actually take out cellphones and photograph us. 
We’re forbidden to photograph: “I’ll break your camerainfo-icon.”  Again and again they
point to a sort of square, a faded orange in color.  We’re supposed to stand
there:  “You’re breaking the law.”

15:25  The section of the road between Deir Sharaf and the Shavei
Shomron intersection is still closed.

15:35  Jit is open.