❶ Israel surveys vast tract of land southeast of J’lem to declare it state land
- Background: “Settlements and Ethnic Cleansing In the Jordan Valley.”
❷ Israeli forces level lands in southern Gaza Strip
- Background: “Perils of Parity: Palestine’s Permanent Transition.”
❸ Palestinian human rights groups ‘gravely concerned’ over ongoing death threats to staff
❹ POETRY by Rashid Hussein
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❶ ISRAEL SURVEYS VAST TRACT OF LAND SOUTHEAST OF J’LEM TO DECLARE IT STATE LAND
The Palestinian Information Center
Aug. 15, 2016
The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) has embarked recently on conducting a land survey between the settlement of Efrat (southeast Jerusalem) and the area to its east with the intention of annexing it and declaring it state land, according to a report published by Haaretz newspaper on Sunday.
___Efrat is in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc in the southern West Bank, and the area to its east is called Givat Eitam. MORE . . .
- Tofakji, Khalil. “Settlements And Ethnic Cleansing In The Jordan Valley.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 21.3 (2016): 81-87.
[. . . .] The Israeli government utilized two main methods in order to construct and expand its settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).The first method involved setting legal and bureaucratic procedures enabling the government to confiscate lands. By using the following justifications: seizure for military purposes, declaration of state lands, seizure of absentee property, confiscation for public needs, and initial registration, Israel has managed to take over about 50% of the lands in the West Bank, barring the local Palestinian public from using them. The second method is by evicting Palestinians from these lands, with the declared objective of controlling maximum land with a minimum number of Palestinian Arabs. The Israeli daily Haaretz on 21 May 2014 revealed in a report the methods the IDF uses to remove the Palestinians from Area C, and quoted Israeli army officer col. Einav Shalev as saying the Israeli army practices daily confinement, harassment and attacks on Palestinians through the sabotage of their crops and lands, as well as preventing them from obtaining building licenses, water and electricity. These “tools” are used to place pressure on and eventually force the Palestinian inhabitants of these areas to leave their houses and lands. Shalev added that the army also increased its military training in the Jordan Valley in an attempt to force the Palestinians to leave the land.
___These methods are viewed by Palestinians as systematic ethnic cleansing policy and have also been also implemented in the Jordan Valley.
[. . . .] With security considerations no longer being the primary motivation, the continued expansion into and occupation of the West Bank is a strategic move for Israel serving its economic interests. Through the restrictions on movement of people and goods, Israel is able to control the Palestinian economy and constrain growth to limited designated areas, or via immigration into neighboring countries. These methods, combined with the Bahrain Canal Project linking the Dead Sea to the Red Sea, which would primarily benefit the Israelis, the continued demolition of Palestinian homes, and the eviction of Bedouins, aim at attaining the undeclared goal of the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from the OPT. SOURCE.
❷ ISRAELI FORCES LEVEL LANDS IN SOUTHERN GAZA STRIP
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 15, 2016
Israeli military vehicles staged a limited incursion across the borderline of the besieged Gaza Strip to level land on Monday morning, locals said.
___Locals told Ma’an that six Israeli military vehicles crossed the Abu Rida gate at the border east of the town of Khuzaa in the southern Gaza Strip and leveled Palestinian land in the area.
___Israeli military incursions inside the besieged Gaza Strip and near the “buffer zone” which lies on both land and sea sides of Gaza, have long been a near-daily occurrence. MORE . . .
- Miller, Zinaida. “Perils of Parity: Palestine’s Permanent Transition.” Cornell International Law Journal 47.2 (2014): 331-415.
[. . . . ] Rather than understanding the situation in terms of occupation—a framework that seeks to protect a vulnerable people from a militarily strong sovereign—the Oslo regime suggests two warring parties. In the process, Israeli, international, and even Palestinian discourse has gradually reduced or eliminated the use of the term ‘occupation’ while focusing on the achievement of ‘peace.’
___The Oslo regime has also affected Palestinian resistance. While the PLO in the past sought to end the occupation, current iterations have focused on the achievement of statehood. In the process, the goal of equality . . . may at times be undermined by a process predicated on parity . . . . Relations of parity resulted in part from the Palestinian belief that mutual recognition or formal status would alter the terms of the conflict; in the end, however, the conception— and perception—of equivalence largely overtook the reality of asymmetry, making it harder rather than easier to address the structural inequality between the players. The focus of the international community (and the PLO) on establishing a state has oriented the Palestinian national movement away from earlier approaches rooted in rhetoric of emancipation and liberation. [. . . . ] No longer simply occupier and occupied, Israel and the Palestinian Authority have been transformed into putative equals engaged in perpetual negotiation [. . . .]
___These changes came about in no small part because of the unexpectedly enduring presence of international actors. The Accords reassigned responsibility for the Palestinian population to the newly created Palestinian Authority while leaving control over territory largely in the hands of the Israeli government. With the nascent Authority severely lacking capacity, the arrangement was tenable only because of international support in the form of money and expertise [. . . . ]
___Over the course of the following two decades, international actors and organizations provided aid . . . facilitated peacebuilding, development, and post-conflict reconstruction, and supported negotiations between the parties. International actors, however, brought more than money or institutional blueprints: their ideas about how to make peace and reconstruct territories after conflict reshaped the form and conceptualization of governance and peace in the Occupied Territories. FULL ARTICLE.
❸ PALESTINIAN HUMAN RIGHTS GROUPS ‘GRAVELY CONCERNED’ OVER ONGOING DEATH THREATS TO STAFF
Aug. 15, 2016
The Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) said in a press release on Sunday that they were “gravely concerned” over an ongoing smear campaign and mounting threats by Israeli authorities and associated groups directed at employees of PHROC member organizations. ___The statement came after reports emerged that human rights lawyer Nada Kiswanson, who represents Palestinian NGO Al-Haq before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague, had been receiving death threats since February, Dutch newspaper NRC reported on Wednesday. ___The report revealed the threats referred specifically to Kiswanson’s work with the ICC, rousing suspicions that Israeli security services may have been involved in the attack, according to the newspaper. MORE . . . RELATED . . .
“AN ADDRESS,” BY RASHID HUSSEIN
Hairs as short as my life is
And a mouth as sensuous as my dreams
And fire is her voice
And so is the music
Yet she wants me to rest
On an easy chair
And keep my thoughts clean.
Oh my dear hunter!
What you ask is much more
Than all that I can give . . .
For the angels are dead,
And I am not with them.
A wine was her perfume
Generous was her bed
But her hopes were stronger,
And the strongest of all:
She wanted my address.
She asked: “Where lives the ‘Prince’?”
Then, I stood silenced
For I had no address.
I am a man in transit,
Twenty years in transit
A man who was even deprived
The right of having an address.
From: Aruri, Naseer and Edmund Ghareeb, eds. ENEMY OF THE SUN: POETRY OF THE PALESTINIAN RESISTANCE. Washington, DC: Drum and Spear Press, 1970. Available from Amazon.