9:30 to 11:10
Many people pass today, all ages and genders. Many children dressed in festive attire, most of them happy and gay - except the stares of wonder and fear when they notice the soldiers' rifles.
Occasionally a line of people is formed next to the windows, despite the five that are open.
There is a constant communication between the Israeli side of the checkpoint to the Palestinians in Bethlehem and occasionally you can hear the instructions, "Stop streaming..." "Okay stream..." [Of course, the product they are streaming are Palestinians].
A family arrives, parents and a girl around 13. The father and the daughter pass, the mother doesn’t. She's only 49 and a few months (if she was fifty she could have passed the checkpoint with ID and without a special permit) ... The father turns to the security guard several times. He speaks to him in Hebrew, smiles, asks for a favor, asks for consideration. The security guard is quiet, listening, asking, answering in the negative. The third time, because of Palestinian pressure, he calls the commander and you can hear on the radio the answer: "Tell her that in one year she could pass." The mother is disappointed, the smile that was there is starting to disappear because she understands that probably she won’t be able to pass. The girl is angry, her eyes scanning the soldiers and the security guard and one can imagine what’s going through her mind. She speaks with her father strongly and he asks her: "What do you want us to do? You want mother to break the checkpoint by force?!" And the girl: "Yes!"
The father and the daughter are standing on the Israeli side, waiting for salvation that doesn’t come. Eventually the mother leaves and goes back to Bethlehem. The girl had an experience that cannot be beneficial...