Bethlehem (300)

Clair Oren, Translation: Naomi Gal


9:15 to 10:50

A line of buses is waiting for those leaving the checkpoint. There are many women and children, but also older men and younger. 2 open windows. A New security guard.

Around 10:00 voices are heard from the Palestinian side of the checkpoint, many Palestinians arrive and suddenly a long line is created. A third window is opened but progress is still very slow. A very large group, mostly women, one of the women is prevented. One of the men, probably her husband, intervenes and tries to convince the soldier to let her pass: "Even to Jordan we passed with this passport, why can’t we pass here?!" But it doesn’t help and the woman is forced to return to Bethlehem. 
Another woman, older, is waving a piece of paper with her ID number. She forgot the card at home but asks them to the number at their computer: "In any case she is very old!" adds a man who.volunteered to help her. I suggest to the soldier, "Maybe you should call the officer so he check and decide  ?" But the soldier argues that these are the orders he received. Suddenly the young energetic                                  commander, who speaks Arabic fluently comes out. He is everywhere, asking, listening, deciding. Finally he entered one of the windows and began passing the people in his own pace and within  7-minutes the checkpoint was deserted.