Deir Sharaf, Eliyahu Crossing, Habla, Jit, Jubara (Kafriat), Mon 28.6.10, Morning
6:35 Habla agricultural gate
The soldiers already opened the gate to the plant nurseries and wait for the Hummer that went to pick up the female MP.
The Hummer in fact arrives before 6:45, but the first five people on line enter for inspection only at 6:50, after the soldiers encouraged the MP to hurry up.
There’s a long line on the Habla side of the fence, and annoyance at the inspection’s slowness. Every laborer exits holding his belt in his hand. Day after day…Summer school vacation has begun and youths come through with their fathers as well as youths who apparently obtained jobs in the nurseries and received a permit to cross.
7:15 Only 30 people have come through so far and those waiting are arguing and pushing one another. The soldiers try to restore order and shut the gate between one group going through and the next.
One of the laborers asks for help finding out whether and why he’s still forbidden to work in Israel, even though he received a new magnetic card.
Another again asks why the gate doesn’t open earlier, at least during the summer. It would certainly make life easier for the laborers.
A watchman for one of the nurseries, who lives in Dab’a, returns to his village each morning and waits patiently at the checkpoint.
Many horse-carts, and their inspection also slows down the crossing.
7:30 There are still many laborers who haven’t yet crossed.
7:50 Eliyahu gate
We don’t see Palestinians waiting, but a horse and cart waiting near the crossing indicate that not everyone has gone through.
We continue on our usual route through Nebi Elias, Azzun, Funduq, and see no military presence at the locations where military vehicles usually stood.
A Hummer is parked at Jit junction, on the side toward Sara.
We get on Route 60, toward Jenin. The road from Deir Sharaf is almost ready and open, and soldiers at the checkpoint near Shavei Shomron report that it’s now being asphalted and will apparently open in two weeks.
We’ll wait and see…
We return to Deir Sharaf and stop for coffee. The owner of the grocery says that he also heard the road will soon open, which if true will be very good, but he’ll believe it when he sees it! He says that the economic situation isn’t good, and there are people who really have nothing to eat, even though on the surface it appears that there is more going on.
A Palestinian also approaches us there, wanting advice regarding his sister’s problem. She lives in Saudia Arabia but has a Palestinian ID card. Together we try to think whom she should contact, and talk about the situation.
We return via the Einav checkpoint, that is totally deserted, and reach the Te’anim gate (Jubara).
9:45 We ask for the gate to be opened. The checkpoint commander refuses to open it unless we show him a permit allowing us to cross there. DCO, head of the DCO, he couldn’t care less. He’ll open the gate only if we show him a permit from his immediate superior. To make a long story short, Captain Tedesa, the DCO, spoke with the commander’s commander, who spoke to the checkpoint commander and gave the order, but now they can’t find the key…Apparently someone took it to the fortified post and it isn’t clear who’ll go get it. We wait until 10:20 and then leave, even though Tedesa says he’ll take care of it.
It was a “boring” shift; nothing special occurred besides the occupation, the fences, people who can’t decide how and where they’ll live and work, and a sort of quiet acceptance that this is how things are, and a hope that they won’t get any worse.I think it’s extremely important to continue these shifts, thereby showing the Palestinians and the army/government that at least we don’t accept the situation and continue to serve as a watchdog.