“. . . Boundless fear binds our hands . . . and our beating hearts . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

❶ Israel to vote on annexing illegal West Bank settlements to Jerusalem

  • Background: “State Authority in the Balance: The Israeli State and the Messianic Settler Movement.” International Studies Review.

❷ Israel demolishes Palestinian Bedouin village for 120th time
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) UK parliamentarians urge Israeli compensation for demolished Palestinian homes
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Israel’s military informs Qabatiya family of plans to demolish its home
❸ POETRY by Ibrahim Nasralla
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Ma’an News Agency
Oct. 25, 2017 ― Israeli ministers are expected vote next week on the so-called “Greater Jerusalem Bill,” which would annex 19 illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank to Israel’s municipal boundaries for Jerusalem, according to Israeli news daily Haaretz.
___Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu threw his support behind the bill earlier this month, which would reportedly allow the settlers to retain their autonomy but afford them voting rights in the city’s mayoral race.
___It would meanwhile create “independent municipalities” for some 100,000 Palestinian citizens or residents of Israel who live within Israel’s Jerusalem municipality borders, but are located on the other side of Israel’s illegal separation wall.
[. . . .] According to the bill, the settlements of Maale Adumim — which itself is home to between 125,000 and 150,000 Israeli settlers — Gush Etzion, Efrat, Beitar Illit and Givat Zeev will be included under Jerusalem’s municipal jurisdiction, but not officially annexed to Israel, Haaretz said.     MORE . . .

Mendelsohn, Barak.
International Studies Review, vol. 16, no. 4, Dec. 2014, pp. 499-521.
(Barak Mendelsohn: M.A. in Security Studies, Tel Aviv University, 1999; Ph.D. in Government, Cornell University, 2006; Professor, Haverford College, 2007-present) For four decades now, the Israeli state has tolerated and even utilized the Jewish messianic movement in the context of its conflict with the Palestinians, even as the messianic movement has challenged and undermined the authority of the state.
[. . . .] The [Jewish messianic right] movement, only informally linked to the state’s institutions, is challenging state authority. Its actions regarding the territories Israel captured in 1967—primarily in the West Bank—have undermined the state and complicated policies to resolve the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. Yet, successive Israeli governments since the 1970s have declined to exercise state authority when facing radical messianic groups in the West Bank. Moreover, both right- and left-wing Israeli governments have pandered to religious extremists and even supported them despite the fact that these extremists have operated outside Israel’s political system, violated the law, used unauthorized violence, and subverted state authority. Israel’s policy has not offered significant strategic benefits. In fact, it has backfired: Rather than ameliorating the Palestinian problem, it has intensified the conflict while reducing the state’s ability to reach a peace agreement. In addition, its settlement policies have weakened Israel’s international standing. Compromising state authority has had detrimental consequences, undermining Israel’s ability to change course even when its view of the settlements’ strategic value shifted. At the same time, it has deepened domestic divisions that threaten the state’s internal unity.   SOURCE.

Ma’an News Agency
Oct. 25, 2017 ― Israeli authorities on Wednesday demolished the Bedouin village of al-Araqib in the Negev desert in southern Israel for 120th time, according to official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned WAFA news agency.      ___WAFA reported that staff from the Israel Land Authority (ILA) accompanied by Israeli police and bulldozers raided the village and demolished the makeshift homes made out of tin that the residents build every time the village is demolished.     ___An Israeli court ruled last month that six residents of al-Araqib must pay 262,000 shekels (more than $72,000) for previous demolition costs, in addition to 100,000 shekels ($27,693) to cover the costs of the state’s lawyer. It was only the latest payment in which the village has had to compensate Israel for its routine demolitions in the village.    MORE . . .
The  Middle East Monitor – MEMO 
Oct. 26, 2017 ― A group of UK parliamentarians have urged Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson to seek Israeli compensation of Palestinian structures demolished in the occupied West Bank.
___Writing in a letter to Johnson, the parliamentarians ask whether the British government will join “eight other European countries in demanding compensation from Israeli authorities” for the demolition or damage of Palestinian structures funded directly or indirectly by the UK.
[. . . .] “You will be aware of the huge parliamentary concern about the impending demolitions of the communities of Khan al-Ahmar and Susiya”, the letter notes, “where structures have been built with EU funding”.
___“We continue to urge you to do everything within your power to prevent the demolitions of these communities and many others in Area C of the West Bank”.     MORE . . .  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Oct. 26, 2017 ― The Israeli occupation forces Thursday informed the family of Mohammad Abu al-Rub of its intention to demolish its home in Qabatiya, south of Jenin, as a punishment for its son’s act, according to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society.
___Abu al-Rub is currently in Israeli detention after he was accused to killing an Israeli in the town of Kufr Qassem inside Israel few weeks ago.
___The army informed the family that its home will be demolished in four days.
___Abu al-Rub was arrested along with fellow town member Yousef Kmeil and charged with killing an Israeli in Kufr Qassem.
___The Kmeil family was not informed that its house will be demolished yet.   SOURCE . . .  

They were for a year at our doorstep,
sleepless with their brown flesh-and-blood complexions,
knocking against our ribs to make us see them.
At the end of the night they depart.
They circle around the city seven time
like the revolving sun,
like a reverberating echo.
They kill the silence      with their flutes
and light and birds hover around them
as they swim in the shadows
of tall wheat spikes and white stags.
As night falls the wind shakes the streets
and the darkness breathes out crazed spears among trees
jostling toward the windows and balconies.
We heard the hooves of their horses,
so we hid in the corners,
under beds, between ribs.
We hid like a storm among branches.
Their olives sill eventually grow tired . . .  we said:
It might snow . . .     soldiers might come by this evening and immediately kill them,
or like a sun’s fading light they might grow tired    
and kill themselves
Night falls once more . . . the wind blows.
We hold our breath and retreat.
Boundless fear binds our hands . . . and our beating hearts.
The most recent among us said . . . Let us all rise up and ask them:
You who have been sleepless at our doorstep for a year and two nights:
What do you want?

Storms of corpses rushed to the corners.
The smell of death rose from the roofs of the mirrors,
from the colors of the eyes.
Let us all rise . . . the most recent among us said.
And when we reached the door, they shouted at us:
You. . .O dead ones . . . don’t open the door!

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

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