“. . . we appear to be nothing more than prisoners. . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

A Palestinian family walks on Aug. 27, 2014, past the collapsed remains of a building in al-Shujaiyya that was destroyed in fighting between Hamas and Israel. (AFP/Roberto Schmidt)
A Palestinian family walks on Aug. 27, 2014, past the collapsed remains of a building in al-Shujaiyya that was destroyed in fighting between Hamas and Israel. (AFP/Roberto Schmidt)

❶ From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
GAZAN RESIDENTS CELEBRATING EID REMINDED OF LAST YEAR’S LOSSES
July 17, 2015
Residents of the al-Shujaiyya neighborhood in the Gaza Strip enter Eid al-Fitr celebrations this year reminded of the heavy losses sustained just before the holiday began last year.
____Gaza resident Um Mumen Skafi lost both her son and her home after an attack by Israeli forces took place shortly before the holy month of Ramadan came to a close last year, in what would later be known as the Shujaiyya massacre.
(More. . .)

❷ From MONDOWEISS
THE BRAVE NEW WORLD OF MAPPING OCCUPIED EAST JERUSALEM
Dan Cohen
July 16, 2015
While Israel seeks to brand Jerusalem as its eternal and undivided capital, the existence of 300,000 Palestinian Jerusalemites lays bare the apartheid reality of the self-proclaimed Jewish State’s claim. For Israeli military and security firms, occupied East Jerusalem’s unique situation presents unique opportunities to develop new methods of enforcing occupation.
____Ofek Aerial Photography is one of these companies. This firm has sold a Google Street View-style mapping system to Israeli military and police agencies used to plan operations in occupied East Jerusalem to the smallest detail. Called mobile mapping, the technology can be used for anything from measurements for home demolitions to shooter-style video game simulations of full-force military invasions.
(More. . .)

❸ From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI FORCES DETAIN GAZAN TRAVELING TO WEST BANK FOR TREATMENT
July 11, 2015
Israeli forces on Friday afternoon detained a young Palestinian man from the Gaza Strip as he tried to pass through Erez crossing near Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza strip.
____Ibrahim al-Shaer, 20, was attempting to travel to the West Bank for medical treatment when Israeli forces stopped him and took him into custody, Palestinian sources and family relatives told Ma’an. . . .
____Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip regularly attempt to travel outside of the blockaded coastal enclave for medical treatment.
____Seventeen hospitals, 56 primary healthcare facilities and 45 ambulances were damaged or destroyed by Israeli strikes during the 50-day war between Israel and Hamas last summer, according to humanitarian group Medical Aid for Palestinians.
(More. . .)

Palestinians walk through the Erez border crossing with Israel in the northern Gaza Strip as they cross into Gaza, on June 9, 2010. (AFP/Mahmud Hams, File)
Palestinians walk through the Erez border crossing with Israel in the northern Gaza Strip as they cross into Gaza, on June 9, 2010. (AFP/Mahmud Hams, File)

❹ From THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
REPORT: AT LEAST 6,000 PALESTINIAN PRISONERS IN ISRAELI JAILS
July 17, 2015
At least 6,000 Palestinians are still prisoners in 18 Israeli jails and detention center, according to a report released by the Palestinian commission for detainees and ex-detainees on Thursday.
____480 of those prisoners are serving life sentences and 67 others are being jailed for prison terms exceeding 20 or 25 years.
____The detainees also include 24 women, 250 children and minors, and eight lawmakers.
(More. . .)
See also: FIVE PALESTINIAN MOTHERS SPEND EID AL-FITR IN ISRAELI JAILS

❺ Opinion
From MONDOWEISS
NAIM ATEEK’S MORAL ARC OF THE UNIVERSE
Marc Ellis
July 16, 2015
When we think of protest letters, Martin Luther King’s letter from a Birmingham jail comes to mind. But there’s a tradition of protest letters to the unjust powers-that-be. Written for immediate effect, they are preserved in history and studied. These letters change the way we view the world. They call us to act for justice in our time.
____Add another protest letter, from a Palestinian cleric, Reverend Naim Ateek. This one’s personal.
____I first met Naim in Jerusalem in 1987 when I presented my Jewish theology of liberation. He asked me to read his manuscript on a Palestinian theology of liberation. After reading the first pages, I knew a new theological day was dawning. A Jewish and a Palestinian theology of liberation could make an impact for justice.
(More. . .)
(Marc H. Ellis is retired Director and Professor of Jewish Studies at Baylor University and author of Burning Children: A Jewish View of the War in Gaza and Exile and the Prophetic: Images in the New Diaspora.)

“HOMELAND,” BY IBRAHIM NASRALLAH

Under the yoke of our mornings
the sun crumbles
and in the darkness of our steps
our panting breath is on fire
these incomplete homelands
in which we appear to be
nothing more than prisoners of war

“DAYS,” BY IBRAHIM NASRALLAH

On the first day
I held my hand as it drew a coffin
so they sent me a wreath
On the second day
I held my hand as it drew a flower
so they sent me a coffin
On the third day I shouted out
I want to live
so they sent me a killer

“IN THE BEGINNING,” BY IBRAHIM NASRALLAH

In the beginning
the horses said, we need plains
the eagles said, we need summits
the snakes said, we need lairs
but humans remained bewildered

About Ibrahim Nasrallah.
Nasrallah, Ibrahim. Rain Inside. Trans. Ibrahim Muhawi. Evanston, IL: Curbstone Books (Northwestern University Press), 2009. Available from Amazon.

Naim Ateek
Naim Ateek

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