Etzion DCL

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Shlomit S., Yael S., (Reporting), Bracha B.A. (Translation)
Seriously? Does this make us safer?


On the way: Gush Etzion junction was devoid of Palestinian pedestrians. Jewish people were standing at the bus stops but there was not a Palestinian in sight. This is the cost of the security regulations.  There were soldiers at the entrances and exits and Palestinian vehicles and taxis were being checked. There was no line or any exceptional occurrence, but the large military presence reminds Jews that they are protected and reminds the Palestinians that they are under occupation.

At the Liaison and Coordination Administration there were many cars in the parking lot but few people in the hall and no line. A Palestinian who came out reported that it took him one hour to be issued a magnetic card, from the time he entered to the time he left.

The soldier in the reception window was extremely polite, but the officers were in a meeting so there was no one to talk to during the shift. I spoke later to the director of the Liaison and Coordination Administration, who promised to take care of the incident concerning the hotel worker who had not been able to work for a month because he has been banned from entering Israel.It is impossible to describe the helplessness of people who lose their livelihood at the wave of a hand from the Special Services. I have only heard the Palestinian side of the story, but I hope that this will end well.

There was also an Israeli Arab whose truck had been confiscated.  The man was angry because he had to pay a fine of close to NIS 10,000.  He was told that he would be called and notified when he could come to reclaim the truck. Three work days have already gone by and he had not been called yet. He ran back and forth between the window and the gate until the supervisor's car arrived and from there I hope the matter would be settled. It is frustrating that there is no one to talk to and it is so easy to get lost in the bureaucracy. The man is a resident of Beer Sheva and this is the third time he has come to the Liaison and Coordination Administration to attempt to redeem his truck.

The last person we met was a young man who was accompanying a friend who was to be questioned by the Special Services. As time passed he became worried and asked me what was going on. Before our shift ended at noon his friend was released and said that things had gone well, and appeared to be at ease.

Up front, it appears that the system is working smoothly.  Everyone knows their place, and the relations of power are clear to everyone. However, the occupation is not becoming any easier.