“A sky fell into the braid of the little girl . . .” (Dalia Taha)

❶ Israel’s Jerusalem municipality plans to demolish Palestinian buildings
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Gabbay: No Settlement Will Be Evacuated

  • Background: “Gated/Gating Community: The Settlement Complex in the West Bank.” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers.

❷ International conference in Kuwait on Palestinian children’s suffering
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israel attacks Palestinian school children with gas and sound bombs
❸ Israel blocks Palestinian from visiting father’s grave in Christian cemetery
❹ POETRY by Dalia Taha
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Nov. 13, 2017 ―  The Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem is planning to demolish a number of Palestinian buildings in occupied East Jerusalem neighborhoods that would displace hundreds of people, Palestinian and Israeli sources said on Monday.
___The municipality notified a number of Palestinian citizens in Issawiya of its intention to demolish their homes under the pretext of construction without a permit, according to residents.
___They said staff from the Israeli municipality handed Issawiya residents notifications informing that their homes will be demolished for lack of an Israeli construction permit and others were told to report to the municipality to discuss the legal status of their homes.   MORE . . .
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC      
Nov. 13, 2017 ― Israel will not evacuate any settlement in the occupied West Bank or Jerusalem, under any peace settlement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the leader of Israeli Labor Party Avi Gabbay stated, on Sunday.
___Ma’ariv paper quoted Gabbay as saying that it is impossible to evacuate 100 thousand settlers under any future peace settlement, saying that it is irrational to create such a cruel event.   MORE . . .

Handel, Ariel.
Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers,
vol. 39, no. 4, Oct. 2014, pp. 504-517.
[This] paper suggests that the settlement layout in the West Bank is not just an aggregate of 124 ‘legal’ gated  communities and a similar number of ‘illegal outposts’, but rather a single, contiguous gated community gating, in turn, Palestinian ‘islands’ within it. Gated communities differ on several factors of enclosure, security features, amenities, type of residents, tenure, location, size and policy context. They tend to turn their backs on the city and aspire to create an autarkic community that has no need for the outside world.
[. . . .] In their account of the evolution and development of enclosed residential neighbourhoods in Israel, Gillad Rosen and Eran Razin distinguish between three types of enclaves: landscapes of heritage (ultra-orthodox Jewish cities, inner division of a Bedouin city), fortress landscapes (frontier settlements in Israel and in the Occupied Territories) and fortified and privatized neighbourhoods (new urban gated communities.
[. . . .] the settlements in the West Bank were part of a network since their very inception, both in their positive features of shared ethnicity and values and in their exclusionary character with respect to the Palestinian population. Also, Israel’s purpose was to seize as much land as possible, therefore planning the settlements’ form and dispersion as part of a wide network. As for the closure’s characteristics, the settlements’ closure was achieved for many years without walls and gates. . . .   In fact, the Jewish settlements started gating themselves only after they had turned into a single, fortified net cast wide enough as to constitute not a gated but a gating community. Finally, the settlements’ relations with the surrounding area had always been exclusionary, but they gradually came to encompass more and more domains: from separate settlements to separate road network. The ethnic feature effected a clear-cut separation between the populations, their villages and later their cars . . .   SOURCE . . .

Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom) 
Nov. 13, 2017 ― Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah and the Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday opened an international conference in Kuwait on the Israeli violations against Palestinian children.
___The two-day conference is organized by the Arab League’s General Secretariat in cooperation with Kuwait’s Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor.
___Abbas affirmed, in his address to the conference, that children are the most affected segment of the Palestinian people by the Israeli practices, pointing out that Israel has violated international agreements by opening prisons for children in 2009.
___The United Nations a few days ago announced that there are 500 Palestinian children incarcerated in Israeli jails and expressed concern over their situation.
___For his part, the Secretary-General of the Arab League, Ahmad Abu al-Gheit, called in his speech at the conference for developing mechanisms to hold the Israeli occupation accountable for its crimes against the Palestinian children.   MORE . . .
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO    
Nov. 13, 2017 ― Israeli occupation forces stormed the village of Deir Nidham, northwest of Ramallah, this morning and closed its main entrances.
___Ahmed Al-Tamimi, head of Deir Nidham’s village council, told the news agency that the occupation forces stormed the area in the morning and closed its main entrances, imposing a siege on it.
___He pointed out also that “there have been large numbers of occupation forces in the village since the morning, who claimed that school students are throwing stones at settlers along the main road.”
___Al-Tamimi explained that in the meantime the occupation forces besieged the school in order to threaten students and intimidate them with detention if they throw stones.   MORE . . .   …
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
Nov. 13, 2017 ― For years, Israel has been preventing Salwa Salem-Copty from visiting the grave of her father killed by Israeli troops in his Galilee village, Ma’alul, in 1948, just a few months before she was born.
___Israeli forces occupied Ma’alul in July 1948, expelled its Palestinian residents, and destroyed the entire village with the exception of two churches and a mosque. Israel has since prevented the village’s displaced residents from returning.
___An Israeli military base was built around the village’s Christian cemetery and the displaced residents, whose loved ones are buried in the cemetery, have been barred by Israeli authorities from visiting family graves since 1948.
___Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel ― said in a press release on Tuesday that it has sent a letter to senior Israeli political and military officials demanding that Salem-Copty and other internally-displaced Christian Palestinian residents and their descendants be allowed to visit the graves of family members in Ma’alul.   MORE . . .

A sky fell into
the braid
of the little girl who was killed.
Her face
is a wind in the shadows
of the garden,
blowing without colour
or blushing
when the air rushes through.

As if she knew,
when the jackals emerged
from her shadow and the river widened
in the disappointment
of whiteness.

As if she knew, when the sparrows
ate her eyes
and the sidewalk walked
in her blood.

The woman treads on dead
jasmine, searching
the minutes
for her hand.
She hides half her face,
and the air is filled with
the fingers of nothingness.

She pokes a hole in the poem
so the sidewalks can
wander into it.

The little girl’s hand withers and her blood
slumbers in
the lake.
When God passed over
her name,
she buried her hands in the heights of the jasmine
and covered her nakedness
with the corpses of the invaders.
―Translated by Allison Blecker

From Banipal 45: Magazine of Modern Arab Literature. Winter 2012.
Dalia Taha is a Palestinian poet and playwright. She was born in Berlin 1986 but grew up in Ramallah-Palestine. Her first play “Keffiyeh/Made in China” was produced by the Flemish Royal Theater [and] was premiered in Brussels in 2012, then brought to Palestine where it toured 7 Palestinian cities across the west bank.  (More. . .)
An Interview with Dalia Taha

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