Reihan, Shaked, Mon 9.2.09, Morning
Twenty people are waiting at this hour for "the privilege" of going through to their land; all together fewer than forty people go through the CP this morning -- out of 800 landowners. People keep repeating the complaint that new permits are not issued when the permit they have is no longer valid. That is the way it is when the occupier is sovereign to decide that the agricultural season is over. People are very worried and we have no answers.
The inspection procedures are as usual: The soldiers inspect the documents and the lists they have in hand. In the afternoon, they will note which of those who left in the morning have come back. A person from the DCO makes decisions about doubtful cases. A tractor with a sack of flour or sheep fodder is required to return it to his house. This cannot be taken through the CP. Afterwards, the soldier explains to us that he cannot know what is in the sack and that is why he does not take a chance. And apart from that, he tells us to get out (of his military area).
The Hummers parked in the CP are kept running throughout all the time they are there. The explanation is that if they are shut off, it is hard to start them again. That sounds really funny.
06:30 Those who are waiting go to the center of the CP. A woman who goes through with her son asks to go back. Both of them are tense. If they allow her to go back and her son remains by himself, will they make trouble for him on his way back? Another man, who was called to come back home by his wife who is ill, is also waiting for the right time to ask the soldiers for a favor. The most important thing is not make them angry. The tension, the doubt and the need to do what the soldiers want, are characteristic of the occupation and the oppression, even when we make the mistake of thinking that "everything is o.k." and there are no "special problems", which was our experience of things during the morning. In the morning, we heard an opinion that this CP will be closed in the near future. That is what was being said at the CP gate. Whether or not it is true -- people are stressed.
07:15 Tura (Shaked) CP
The passage is at its height. People are going through in both directions. Today, fewer farmers are going through to the seamline zone -- or perhaps they have already gone through? It seem that the non-renewal of the permits is true here too. Most of those going through are pupils from school and students. The security guard is at his post; with his gun cocked and field glasses, he is alert to every kind of evil you can expect. People go through opposite the rifle. What can they be thinking of then?
07:45 New Barta'a (Reihan) CP
Again we hear complaints about the delays at the Ameriha CP. People who arrive are very upset because they are late for work. At the DCO, they promised to find out about this .... well, so they promised! The traffic of those going to Barta'a is light but flowing steadily. In the morning, according to those who are there now, there was a traffic jam inside and they were delayed more than usual; but now things are "o.k." The driver of a pickup truck asks about the elections tomorrow and spills out his anger about the children murdered in Gaza. He is certain that the Israeli GSS will 'take care' of Obama if and when the Americans will force us to retreat from the occupied territories. He is very angry that he is forced to wait for hours until they call him, and in the meanwhile the settlers go through in a second with everybody at the CP saluting the masters of the land. And as to himself -- his mother is ill and he was called on to come to her aid, and nobody cares about his problem; they only tell him to "wait patiently."
08:45 We left, taking the depression home with us.