קלנדיה, חיזמא - כל יום חיילים חמושים פושטים על הכפר.
One of my grandfather’s Yiddish sayings: A runny nose doesn’t mean you’re sick, and Purim isn’t a holiday.
Holiday or not, it’s another reason and excuse to harass, oppress and make it harder on the poorest and those who are worst off. In honor of Purim, a three-day closure was imposed on the Palestinian territories.
Closure doesn’t only prevent Palestinians with permits from travelling to East Jerusalem. It also shuts the DCL offices, and as a result there’s no one to issue crossing permits to sick residents of the West Bank and others who need them, nor – even worse – to residents of Gaza who’ve been released from prison and which the bureaucracy of closure, on this non-holiday, prevents them from returning home during Purim.
The main entrance to Hizma has been closed for more than a month.
Every day, armed soldiers invade the village.
This morning at 05:00 they broke into Muhammad’s home, opened cupboards, dumped their contents onto the floor, ripped the upholstery of the sofas, broke furniture, took a computer and a camera (and something else that I don’t remember) with the excuse that they’d been stolen from Jews, and finally “took my son” said Muhammad – arrested his 24-year-old son and his son’s friend.
I was told by phone that the two of them were released only the following day, not at their homes where they’d been arrested, but at the Jalame checkpoint, and only after Muhammad left a surety of NIS 10,000.
They also have an order to appear in court on charges of stealing the equipment that was confiscated, and a promise that if they present receipts proving they purchased it the charges will be dropped.
They have a receipt for the computer purchase, but the camera was bought 20 years ago in Saudi Arabia, and they have no receipt.
And the other end of the village is ruled by military terror. The road appears open, but every day and every night armed soldiers come in to make arrests, conduct violent patrols, “show the flag” and fire tear gas and concussion grenades.
Yesterday, a young man told us, it was the Duvdevan unit, I’m most afraid of Duvdevan. So am I, I said. For two hours, from 8 to ten at night, Duvdevan soldiers were there, dressed in black, masked, arresting and detaining and inspecting, and took two people with them when they left. To jail, certainly to jail.
And he, the one who told us, said that then, at ten PM, when he returned home, he went into the room where his children slept, looked at them, sat beside them, wept and wept and wept. I thought about the distress that makes a Palestinian man expose his weakness, his tears, to a privileged Jewish woman.
It also occurred to me that, considering how much shit the army forces the residents of Hizma to swallow every day, and considering the closure that has absolutely no security justification, it was very nice that the President of Israel came on Thursday to present Purim gifts to those “protecting us” (his words) at the Hizma checkpoint, which is about 100 meters from the village and was erected on the villagers’ land.