“. . . We are a country of words. Speak speak. . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

Yarmouk Refugees Waiting for Humanitarian Aid / UNRWA
Yarmouk Refugees Waiting for Humanitarian Aid / UNRWA

From ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
PALESTINIAN REFUGEES IN SYRIA
Emma Flesche
July 9, 2015
After the Nakba of 1948, approximately 90,000 Palestinians became refugees in Syria. The United Nations . . . estimates this number [has become] close to 560,000. Most of these Palestinians lived in one of the 15 refugee camps in Syria, the largest of which was al-Yarmouk. . .
____With the outbreak of the current war in Syria, attacks on Palestinian refugee camps . . . . created a wave of secondary mass displacement of Palestinian refugees within Syria. . . . attack on the Yarmouk camp led to a mass displacement of refugees that reduced the size of the camp from 160,000 to about 30,000.
____UNRWA estimates that more than 70 percent of the Palestinian refugees in Syria are in need of emergency humanitarian assistance, and that more than 50 percent have been internally displaced as a result of the conflict.
(More. . .)

From VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS
UN: 4 MILLION REFUGEES HAVE FLED SYRIA
Lisa Schlein
July 9, 2015
GENEVA— The U.N. refugee agency said the number of refugees fleeing conflict in Syria has topped 4 million, making Syria the world’s biggest refugee crisis in a generation.
____With no solution to the conflict in sight, the UNHCR said it expects the number of refugees to exceed 4.25 million by the end of the year.
____The U.N. refugee agency said this milestone comes barely 10 months after the 3 million refugee mark was reached.
(More. . .)

❸ Special Report
FROM KINDERUSA
THE INHUMANITY OF YARMOUK
Dalell Mohmed
April 16, 2015
Yarmouk is the largest refugee camp in Syria:
– As of April 2015, approximately 18,000 Palestinians remain trapped in Yarmouk, including 3,500 children
– People are living on just 400 calories a day–sometimes less with infants dying of malnourishment, mothers dying at child birth, and residents resorting to eating leaves and animal feed
– Residents have not had electricity since 2013 and with this, no running water.
KinderUSA is preparing emergency aid for Palestinian families from Yarmouk, but we need your support.
(More. . .)

caption: A photo from the Israel, Syrian border along the Golan Heights showing IDF soldiers conversing with Jabhat al Nusra fighters. By MintPress News Desk, May 4, 2015.
A photo from the Israel, Syrian border along the Golan Heights showing IDF soldiers conversing with Jabhat al Nusra fighters. By MintPress News Desk, May 4, 2015.

From THE MIDDLE EAST MONITOR (MEM)
SYRIANS IN OCCUPIED GOLAN FURIOUS ABOUT ISRAEL’S ALLIANCE WITH AL-QAEDA
Asa Winstanley
June 30, 2015
Israel’s most unlikely alliance is that it currently engages in with Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria.
____Despite a long history of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish rhetoric, the main victims of al-Qaeda’s horrible sectarian attacks have been Muslims in the Arab world, along with western civilian and military targets. The movement has rarely targeted Israel. . . .
____But now, on the smaller sector of the Golan which is under Syrian control, the civil war rages. And. . . rebels forces in that area are dominated by al-Qaeda. Yet there has been cooperation between the Israeli military and the rebels. . . .
(More. . .)

❺ Background essay
From AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE
PALESTINIAN REFUGEES AND THE RIGHT OF RETURN
Updated 2015
Approximately 750,000 Palestinians were displaced and became refugees as a result of the 1948 war which led to the founding of Israel. None of these displaced persons were ever allowed to return to the homes or communities from which they were displaced and the Palestinian refugee population has continued to grow in the time that has passed since 1948. Today there are more than 7 million Palestinian refugees scattered around the world. The reality of Palestinian forced displacement is at the core of the Palestinian experience and the Palestinian refugee issue is at the heart of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. This paper provides background information on the history of the Palestinian refugee issue and the politics of the right of return.
(More. . .)

“WE TRAVEL LIKE OTHER PEOPLE,” BY MAHMOUD DARWISH

We travel like other people, but we return to nowhere. As if traveling
Is the way of the clouds. We have buried our loved ones in the
. . darkness of the clouds, between the roots of the trees.
And we said to our wives; go on giving birth to people like us
. . for hundreds of years so we can complete this journey
To the hour of a country, to a meter of the impossible.
We travel in the carriages of the psalms, sleep in the tents of the
. . prophets and come out of the speech of the gypsies.
We measure space with a hoopoe’s beak or sing to while away the
. . distance and cleanse the light of the moon.
Your path is long so dream of seven women to bear this long path
On your shoulders. Shake for them palm trees so as to know their
. . names and who’ll be the mother of the boy of Galilee.
We have a country of words. Speak speak so we may know the end of
. . this travel.

From: Adonis; Mahmud Darwish; and Samih al-Qasim. VICTIMS OF A MAP: A BILINGUAL ANTHOLOGY OF ARABIC POETRY. Trans. Abdullah al-Udhari. London: Saqi Books, 2008. Available from Amazon.
Biographical sketch of Mahmoud Darwish.

A Palestinian relative salvages what he can from his family's belongings amid the rubble of the al-Akhras family home after it was hit by Israeli strike in Rafah refugee camp, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. Two people were wounded in the airstrike on the house according Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
A Palestinian relative salvages what he can from his family’s belongings amid the rubble of the al-Akhras family home after it was hit by Israeli strike in Rafah refugee camp, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. Two people were wounded in the airstrike on the house according Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)

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