Gaza Views II,

This is the second in a series of commentaries.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Mind Games at the Border and then, finally in Gaza

We were in high spirits when we arrived at the Gaza border post. The Canadians, who had put in four arduous days at the border, went thru first, then the 38 students. We called Faten to tell her we arrived, but it took about 15 minutes for our taxis to come. That was just enough time for the border officials to realize that, in their excitment, they had forgotten to do all their forms and procedures for the others. The full searchlight of security shone full upon us, albeit very politely. Forms to fill out, need to wait for a security escort, and, finally, the border health official saying he would send a doctor to our hotel to "examine" us. We drove from Rafah to Gaza City with a police escort, horns blaring, that did not stop at any intersection. This was more than a little embarrassing! Fortunately, they seemed to have lost interest in us after the first day. When the public health doctor arrived at Marna House, our hotel, to "examine" us a few days later, we got by with an interesting discussion about public health in Gaza -- no stethoscope ever appeared!

Gaza Views: Update on Delegation -- Sunday May 24; Headlong into a Kafkaesque World -- May 27

This is the first two of a series of posts by Rosahill about her second trip to Gaza to witness conditions there. Promoted by carol.

Update on Delegation - May 24

Our entire group is now in Cairo and will be leaving tomorrow afternoon for Al Arish. But first, to satisfy Egyptian (and Israeli -- what do they have to do with it?) rules, we must line up at the American Embassy, pay them $30 and sign away our rights to consular services in Gaza. Thank you America for being there for us when we really need you!

Headlong into a Kafkaesqie World -- May 27

The Canadian delegation that arrived in Al Arish two days ago still has not crossed the border to Gaza. Phone calls and papers are flying, but the key to all of this is publicity. Who is keeping smiles from the faces of children in Gaza?