'Anabta, Ar-Ras, Jubara (Kafriat), Qalqiliya, Tue 30.12.08, Morning

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Moriya P., Tom K. (reporting)

Translation: Galia S.


07:20 – In both directions the traffic is flowing. Five vehicles are at the entrance.


09:00 – The traffic is flowing. However, as soon as we get there, two soldiers, reservists wearing skullcaps, run towards us announcing that because we have arrived they are going to start delaying Palestinian vehicles. Of course they also they are at a disadvantage because we are comfortable in our home in Tel Aviv while they protect us. "Tell them their friends have arrived", the reservists shout to their friends who are busy checking a Palestinian vehicle. Meanwhile the traffic goes on streaming despite the threats. Five minutes later they finally fulfill their promise and make a Palestinian jeep wait 2 minutes patiently for them to finish talking with each other. Halleluiah to the occupation!


09:20 – The soldiers don't know what we are talking about, neither do they understand why all of a sudden we wish to pass at Ar-Ras gate. The reservist says that yesterday MachsomWatch women took a different way. We tell him to call and ask for clarifications and permission for us to pass. He wants to take our documents but we explain patiently that we don't give them and ask him again to make the call. In the meantime we are waiting. Ten minutes later Moriya goes to ask one of the soldiers what is going on and what they have found out. It turns out the soldiers are carrying out exercises, which is the reason why he doesn't intend to call anybody. He is busy. I control my annoyance over the various ways the soldiers invent to waste our time and wear us out. The soldier suggests that we travel on the lower road that once used to lead to Tulkarm. This is what we do. Although we drive there, N. is afraid they won't open the gate for us when we come back.


09:40 – For some reason, the soldier who meets us speaks to us in English. The other soldiers have no idea who we are and what MachsomWatch is and start questioning Moriya. There is scarcely any traffic and the soldiers seem to be bored. There are almost no vehicles but they grow in number, coming from Qalqiliya, as we talk. When a fully packed taxi, coming from the direction of Tulkarm, is checked, there is already a line of 6 cars. When we leave, the soldiers are already busy with work.