“. . . Who are these songs when they . . . hide them from the eyes of soldiers . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

One of a series of photos taken in Nabi Saleh on Friday, Aug. 28 that has subsequently gone viral.
One of a series of photos taken in Nabi Saleh on Friday, Aug. 28 that has subsequently gone viral.

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PHOTOS  OF  FAMILY  FORCING  SOLDIER  TO  RELEASE  12-YEAR-OLD  BOY  GO  VIRAL
August 29, 2015
BETHLEHEM―Images of two Palestinian women and a young girl scuffling with an Israeli soldier after he tackled a Palestinian boy with a broken arm went viral Friday evening, as the images became widely circulated on social media networks and mainstream media outlets.
____The incident took place in the central occupied West Bank village of Nabi Saleh near Ramallah, where local, international and Israeli activists gather for weekly Friday rallies in protest against Israel’s separation wall, a well as settlement expansion and illegal policies.
More. . . 

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
NEW  SCHOOL  YEAR  IN  DOUBT  AT  PALESTINIAN  CHRISTIAN  SCHOOLS  IN  ISRAEL
August 29, 2015
JERUSALEM ―Israel’s academic year starts Tuesday, but if tough financing talks with the government bear no fruit, the doors of the country’s 47 Christian schools will remain closed, a church official said.
____Some 33,000 children, mostly Muslim Palestinians, attend the schools, which have a history predating Israel’s foundation in 1948 and are run primarily by the Roman Catholic church.
____Traditionally, the schools received 65 percent of their budgets from the state, with parents paying the balance. But that figure was cut to 34 percent two years ago, doubling the amount parents had to come up with.
More. . .

+972 MAGAZINE
PHOTOS: THE GAZA FAMILIES OBLITERATED IN JUST 51 DAYS
Photography: Anne Paq / Activestills.org
August 26, 2015
Out of the 2,200 Palestinians killed in last summer’s assault on the Gaza Strip, over 80 percent were civilians. Nearly 150 families lost three or more relatives, with some families disappearing entirely. Activestills’ Anne Paq returns to Gaza to tell the story behind the numbers.
More. . .

Photos (from left to right) of the killed siblings Mohammed (12), Yara (8) and Nadeen (16) Mahmoud Al Farra, held by their mother in their home in Khan Younis, February 22, 2015. 9 members of the Al Farra family were killed in the street by an Israeli missile while they were fleeing their home after it was attacked on August 1st, 2014.
Photos (from left to right) of the killed siblings Mohammed (12), Yara (8) and Nadeen (16) Mahmoud Al Farra, held by their mother in their home in Khan Younis, February 22, 2015. 9 members of the Al Farra family were killed in the street by an Israeli missile while they were fleeing their home after it was attacked on August 1st, 2014. (Anne Paq/Activestills.org)

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  INJURE  5  IN  NORTHERN  WEST  BANK  CLASHES
August 29, 2015
NABLUS ―Israeli forces shot four young Palestinian men with rubber-coated steel bullets and an elderly man suffered from tear gas inhalation during clashes early Saturday morning in the northern West Bank village of Tell, south of Nablus, Palestinian security sources told Ma’an.
____Palestinian security sources said that several Israeli military vehicles stormed the village of Tell at 1 a.m. on Saturday morning before local youths responded to their presence and clashes broke out.
____The security sources, as well as locals, said young Palestinian men threw stone and empty bottles at the intruding soldiers, who then fired stun grenades, tear-gas canisters and rubber-coated steel bullets at the young men.
[. . . .]
____Israeli forces have injured 1,307 Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian Territory since the start of the year. . . .
More. . .

❺ Opinion
THE MIDDLE EAST MONITOR (MEM)
NGOS  CALL  ON  ISRAEL  TO  LIFT  GAZA  BLOCKADE
August 27, 2015
Aid, faith, development and human rights organisations have launched an unprecedented joint call urging world leaders to put pressure on Israel to lift the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip. The group of thirty-five NGOs blame the siege for the lack of reconstruction in the enclave a year after the 2014 Israeli offensive.
____“It’s outrageous that a year on from the last Gaza war, not one home has been totally rebuilt and the world has left families to live in rubble,” said senior Avaaz campaigner Fadi Quran. “Governments are allowing Israel to violate the most basic humanitarian laws. Since the start of the blockade there have been three wars with hundreds of children killed.”
____The campaign has attracted the support of renowned international organisations, including Oxfam, Action Against Hunger and Avaaz, to become the largest ever global public push to end the blockade of the Palestinian territory.
More. . . 
***  SIGN THE PETITION
Oxfam
Action Against Hunger | ACF International

“OUR  SONGS,”  BY  IBRAHIM  NASRALLAH
Who are these songs for?
When they break the silence of the night
spreading warmth and life over the snow,
when they fall on the amine and carry it to water,
when they pass by a dim window, secretly embracing a lover,
when the spread over the grass, wrapped in clouds?
Who are these songs for
when they free the flowers
and the hidden flame of passion in women,
when they come to you with their flowers,
when they come to me with their secrets,
when they embrace the sun or a bouquet of flowers
or anything abandoned on the road?
When they send a pulse into the ground
and the pulse blossoms into a flower
in the space between two deaths,
or in a cloud, or in fire?
Who are these songs for
when they laugh,
who are these songs for when they rise?
And who are these songs for
when they open the doors to our houses
and embrace us one by one,
returning us to our lore?
When they carry our bodies in weddings
and cushion us with a lovely homeland
and then pick the most delicious fruit
and the farthest star
and hide them from the eyes of soldiers
to carry them―like our mother―home to us?

From Nasrallah, Ibrahim. RAIN  INSIDE:  SELECTED  POEMS. Trans. Omnia Amin and Rick London. Willimantic, CT: Curbstone Press, 2009. Available from Amazon.
About Ibrahim Nazrallah.

Israeli soldiers firing rubber-coated bullets and tear gas. Ma'an Images.
Israeli soldiers firing rubber-coated bullets and tear gas. Ma’an Images.

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