חבלה, יום ב' 11.10.10, בוקר
06:25 - Hablah crossing
The Palestinians, the soldiers, the military policewomen are on either side of the fence, but the gate is still closed.
The gate is opened. The Palestinians are waiting in groups of five, but today the female soldier is only willing to let groups of three go through. This totally confuses the line, which is already organized, and causes arguments and disorder and, naturally, a lot of anger. The soldiers are also not willing to let the next group coming through to wait next to the turnstyle, which further delays progress.
From time to time, the soldiers close the gate. Only after Nina calls the DCO is the female soldier ready to let through groups of five, but there is a lot of anger (also towards us) and confusion. The Palestinians complain that they are purposely working slowly.
There are still a lot of people waiting in line. I speak with Tedesa about something else and also describe the situation at Hablah; a little later, he arrives and speaks with the soldiers, goes into the inspection booth and tries to clarify what the problem is this morning.
We leave, but there are still more than 20 people who have not passed through. The whole time I am talking on the phone with a Palestinian from ‘Azzun ‘Atma whose permit, allowing him to go to his fields, which are on the seam line, was given for a gate which is far off and not appropriate. He is waiting at the gate, which is apparently not going to be opened, and I am mediating between him and Tedesa. Miki and Tami also try to help (while each one doesn't know about the other). The matter is not solved, but (12.10) they have apparently found a creative solution. By permission of the officer, the men passed through the far away gate, but were transported there by the IDF to their fields. That is what one of the Palestinians reported to me!
We travel to the Palamiah crossing, and, on the way, stop at the new olive press at the entrance to J'ayous. On the way, we see a lot of families picking olives.
At the Palamiah crossing, which is open all day, the Palestinian farmers from J'ayous, Palamiah and Kfar Jemal pass through. There is no crowding at this hour, but people are constantly passing. A young man arrives from J'ayous and tells us that his sister-in-law tried to pass through the J'ayous crossing but, since she didn't have a permit, she wasn't allowed through and now her family doesn't know where she is and he asks for help in finding her. The soldiers and the military policewomen try hard to find her but, since he doesn't know her ID number, or the telephone of other workers, it is complicated. We also try to help but, in the end, we take him home to J'ayous, meet his wife and cute daughter, and we all find out that the sister-in-law succeeded in passing through with her elderly father and young brothers who got permits to go to their fields next to Tzofin (the older brothers did not get permits).
We drank tea and talked with this nice family, about the past and the future, since the present is not so appealing..