“. . . Hello, good morning, we’re fine . . .” (Mourid Barghouti)

❶ After PLO halts ties with US, Arab League steps in to salvage peace process

  • Background: “Edward Said and the Future of Palestine.” Raritan.

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Palestinian national council says closure of PLO office in US reward to Israel
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Abbas will send Majid Faraj to resolve the crisis with the US
❷ Hundreds cross Rafah as Egypt continues to open crossing for 3rd day
❸ Israeli Occupation prepares to demolish six buildings in Kafr Aqab
❹ POETRY by Mourid Barghouti
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
AFTER  PLO  HALTS  TIES  WITH  US,  ARAB  LEAGUE  STEPS  IN  TO  SALVAGE  PEACE  PROCESS 
Ma’an News Agency 
Nov. 20, 2017 ― The Arab League has reportedly approached the United States government regarding its recent decision to punitively shut down the office of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Washington D.C, over the Palestinian leadership’s efforts to bring Israel before the International Criminal Court (ICC).
___Official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency reported on Sunday, shortly after the US State Department announced its decision, that the Arab League — a regional organization of 22 Arab countries — announced that its Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit approached the US President Donald Trump’s administration over the closure.
___The league is reportedly attempting to do damage control and resume US-led peace negotiations following the PLO’s reaction to the closure, in which the group’s secretary general, Saeb Erekat, threatened to “put on hold all our communications with this American administration” if the US did in fact close the PLO Washington office.   MORE . . .

FALK, RICHARD. “EDWARD  SAID  AND  THE  FUTURE  OF  PALESTINE.”
RARITAN,
  vol. 34, no. 3, Winter2015, pp. 1-21.
[. . . .] . . . developments in and after 1967 permanently changed the strategic framework of the entire region and infused the Palestine national movement with a sobering epiphany along these lines: if liberation for the Palestinian people was to be achieved, it could only result from what might be called liberation-from-within, that is, on the basis of a Palestinian resistance movement rather than through reliance on warfare waged by neighboring Arab states. The Palestinian leadership for the first time fully realized that Palestinians must themselves become agents of their own liberation.
[. . . .] Said’s distress with the secular Palestinian leadership reached its climax after the Oslo Framework of Principles was made public in 1993 . . .  seen as a breakthrough at the time in most liberal circles as it acknowledged the Palestinian Liberation Organization as the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people with a status enabling direct negotiations for a peaceful solution to the conflict with Israel within an anticipated time horizon of five years. In retrospect, the Oslo approach was deeply flawed in a number of respects . . .  ENTRUSTING THE UNITED STATES WITH THE ROLE OF “HONEST BROKER” ENSURED THE BIASING OF THE PROCESS; and there was no obligation for Israel to end the expansion of its unlawful settlements. Said prophetically interpreted the Oslo agreement as a humbling defeat for Palestinian diplomacy, a bigger setback than the 1967 War, and the fulfillment of his worst fears as to where the Palestinian movement was headed. . . . What particularly disturbed Said about the Oslo text was its complete failure to reference Palestinian rights, especially the inalienable right of Palestinian self-determination. Beyond this there was no explicit mention of Palestinian statehood. There was also no insistence that Israel suspend any further expansion of the flagrantly unlawful settlements and commit to their eventual dismantling. . .  Said renounced his advocacy of the 1988 conception of a just peace. Instead, he now proposed a single binational state as the correct principled solution for both peoples.    SOURCE . . .

. . . . ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  PALESTINIAN   NATIONAL   COUNCIL   SAYS   CLOSURE   OF   PLO  OFFICE   IN   US   REWARD   TO   ISRAEL  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Nov. 20, 2017 ― The Palestinian National Council (PNC), the parliament in exile, strongly rejected on Monday the US decision not to renew the permit for the operation of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in Washington, saying this decision rewards Israel for its continued illegal settlement activities.
___PNC president, Salim Zanoon, said in a statement that the US decision is an attempt to pressure and blackmail the Palestinians against pursing Israel for its crimes in the West Bank and Gaza Strip at the International Criminal Court.
___He said this move conflicts with the US role as mediator and sponsor of efforts to revive the deadlocked Palestinian-Israeli peace process.   SOURCE . . .
. . . . . ❶  ―  (ᴃ)  ABBAS  WILL  SEND  MAJID  FARAJ  TO  RESOLVE  THE  CRISIS  WITH  THE  US    
Palestine News Network – PNN
Nov. 20, 2017 ― President Mahmoud Abbas will send the head of the General Intelligence Service, General Manger, Majid Faraj to the United States to resolve the escalating crisis with the US State Department following their decision to close the office of the Representative office of Palestine in Washington within 90 days, according to a senior diplomatic source.    MORE . . .
HUNDREDS  CROSS  RAFAH  AS  EGYPT  CONTINUES  TO  OPEN  CROSSING  FOR  3RD  DAY 
Ma’an News Agency 
Nov. 20, 2017 ― Egyptian authorities continued to open the Rafah crossing between the besieged Gaza Strip and Egypt on Monday for the third and final day, allowing humanitarian cases, students, and holders of Egyptian residency to pass through.
___Hundreds of Palestinians passed through the crossing over the past two days, as thousands more waited for a chance to travel via the crossing, which had been closed for more than 100 days before it was opened over the weekend.
___The crossing was reopened on Saturday for three days, under the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) control for the first time in 10 years.    MORE . . .
❸ ISRAELI  OCCUPATION  PREPARES  TO  DEMOLISH  SIX  BUILDINGS  IN  KAFR  AQAB
Palestine News Network – PNN
Nov. 20, 2017 ―  Israeli occupation forces with a group of engineers stormed Al-Matar Neighborhood in Kafr Aqab, north of occupied Jerusalem, and took measurements of six buildings in preparation for their demolition.
___Local sources said that the explosive engineers accompanied by Israeli police, surrounded six buildings threatened with demolition, took their measurements, and carried out a reconnaissance in the area before leaving the place.
___The residents were given eviction orders in September and then 10 days ago a decision by the Israeli High Court authorized the Israeli municipality to demolish the buildings within a month starting from mid-November to next month.    MORE . . .

“HOW ARE YOU?” BY MOURID BARGHOUTI
Waiting for the school bus,
watching his breath turn into mist near his nose
in the icy morning,
the schoolboy’s fingers are frozen,
too stiff to make a fist.

On the pillow of regret,
the defeated soldier
lazily tries to get up,
raising his broken toothbrush
to his teeth.

Early or late,
The stranger awakens in his exile, his homeland.
Their clothes, their car number pates, their trees,
their quarrels, their love, their land, their sea
belong to them.
His memories are like rats gathering on his doormat,
new and warm
in front of his closed door.

On a lonely pillow,
the mother throws a quick glance
at the bed of her elder son,
made for the final time
and empty, forever.

A voice from the neighbouring window is heard:
“Hello, good morning, how are you?”
“Hello, good morning, we’re fine,
we’re fine!”

From: Barghouti, Mourid. Midnight and other Poems. Trans. By Radwa Ashour. Todmorden, Lancashire, UK: Arc Books, 2008. Available from B&N.
Mourid Barghouti

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