To Christ the Lord on his birthday (Fadwa Tuqan)

❶ Live: Christmas Eve in Manger Square
❷ Jerusalem Apostolic Administrator arrives in Bethlehem for midnight mass
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Abbas wishes Christians merry Christmas
❸ 10 Palestinian students injured in clashes in al-Arroub camp
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) Rights Groups slam Supreme Court for giving ‘green light’ to torture
❹ Opinion/Analysis: Nabi Saleh is where I lost my Zionism
❺ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ LIVE:  CHRISTMAS  EVE  IN  MANGER  SQUARE
Palestine News Network – PNN 
Dec. 24-25, 2017    MORE . . .   
❷ JERUSALEM  APOSTOLIC  ADMINISTRATOR  ARRIVES  IN  BETHLEHEM  FOR  MIDNIGHT  MASS
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
Dec. 24, 2017 ― Christmas celebrations kicked off on Sunday with the annual procession led by the Apostolic Administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem Rev. Pierbattista Pizzaballa.
___The car procession started at the Latin Patriarchate at Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City with a stopover at Mar Elias Monastery on the outskirts of Bethlehem before completing its journey to Manger Square and the Church of Nativity in Bethlehem, the birth site of Jesus Christ, where the official ceremony is expected to be held at al-Salam Center.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  ABBAS  WISHES  CHRISTIANS  MERRY  CHRISTMAS
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 24, 2017 ― President Mahmoud Abbas Sunday wished Christians in Palestine who follow the Georgian calendar a merry Christmas and happy holidays.
___He hoped that in these blessed times, the hopes and wishes of the Palestinian people come true and that Palestinians finally celebrate an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.
___Abbas expressed hope for all Palestinians to celebrate the end of the Israeli occupation and peace and justice in the land of peace next year.   MORE . . . 
❸ 10  PALESTINIAN  STUDENTS  INJURED  IN  CLASHES  IN  AL-ARROUB  CAMP 
The Palestinian Information Center  
Dec. 24, 2017 ― Ten Palestinian students were injured on Sunday in confrontations with the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) at the entrance of Palestine Technical University in al-Arroub refugee camp in al-Khalil province.
___Eyewitnesses told the PIC reporter that the IOF soldiers stormed the university campus and fired tear gas canisters, sound bombs, and live and rubber bullets at the students causing at least ten injuries and suffocation cases among them.   MORE . . .  
.  .  .  .  .  ❸  ―  (ᴀ)  RIGHTS  GROUPS  SLAM  SUPREME  COURT  FOR  GIVING  ‘GREEN  LIGHT’  TO  TORTURE
The Palestinian Information Center 
By Ben White
Dec. 24, 2017 ― The Israeli Supreme Court has been accused of redefining torture so as to permit it after a major new ruling was greeted with dismay by local and international human rights groups.
___Last week the court – sitting as the High Court of Justice – denied a petition brought by The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) on behalf of Palestinian prisoner Asad Abu Ghosh.
___According to the petition, Abu Ghosh was tortured with “severe mental and physical violence” during a Shin Bet interrogation in 2007, including “beatings, being thrown against a wall, stress positions including the ‘banana’ position, sleep deprivation, and extreme mental duress”.
[. . . .] Despite this, and the evidence presented by PCATI, the High Court still threw out the petition, accepting an earlier decision of the Attorney General not to open a criminal investigation against the interrogators, and thus granting the agents impunity for their actions.    MORE . . . 
❹ Opinion/Analysis:  NABI  SALEH  IS  WHERE  I  LOST  MY  ZIONISM  
+ 972  Magazine   
By Lisa Goldman
Dec. 24, 2017 ― A short video of 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi slapping an Israeli soldier has dominated the Israeli media for the past week, and received prominent coverage internationally as well. Ahed, a Palestinian girl from the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, makes a big impression with her eye-catching mane of blonde hair, the fierce, intelligent expression in her blue eyes — and her fearlessness.
[. . . .] For Israelis, one of their soldiers was provoked, almost unbearably, but still managed to rise above the situation. For almost everyone else, the video shows an unarmed adolescent . . .  bravely confronting an armed soldier in her own village. Even without knowing the circumstances, a fully-grown man in combat gear and carrying a powerful weapon refraining from hitting a much smaller, unarmed adolescent girl, seems not remarkably praiseworthy but rather a response predicated on basic humanity and ethics.
[. . . .]  By the time I began going to Nabi Saleh, I had spent about four years reporting on what I saw in Gaza and the West Bank, and watching detachedly as my politics moved ever leftward from the liberal place in which they started, as a consequence of what I saw on the ground. But it was in Nabi Saleh that I lost the last remnants of what I would call — for lack of a word to describe my nostalgia for the idea of a state for the Jews — my Zionism.
___My radicalization was not only a consequence of witnessing brutal violence perpetrated right in front of my eyes, by soldiers of the army that was supposed to protect me. It was also a result of my seeing the Tamimi family endure that violence week after week, seeing their relatives injured, arrested and killed, and still not coming to the conclusion that the price of resistance is too high. They simply refuse to submit.   MORE . . .  

TO  CHRIST  THE  LORD  ON  HIS  BIRTHDAY,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN
But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours. And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard.
St. Mark’s Gospel XII: 7-8

O Lord, O glory of the universe,
crucified this year on your birthday,
are the joys of Jerusalem
silenced on your birthday?
O Lord, all the bells
for two millenia have not been silenced
on your birthday
except for this year:
the domes of the bells are in mourning,
black wrapped in black.

Jerusalem along the Via Dolorosa,
whipped under the cross of ordeal,
bleeding at the hands of the executioner,
and the world is a sealed heart
in the face of affliction.
In this hard indifferent world, O Lord,
the sun’s eye is smothered: the world went astray
and was lost.
In the ordeal it did not even raise a candle.
It did not even shed a tear
to wash away the sorrows in Jerusalem.

The husbandmen killed the heir, O Lord,
and raped the vineyard.
The sinners of the world fledged the bird of evil
dashing off to defile the purity of Jerusalem,
damned and infernal, hated even by Satan.

O Lord, O glory of Jerusalem,
from the well of sorrows, from the abyss,
from the depth of the night,
from the heart of plight,
the wails of Jerusalem are raised up to you.
In your mercy, take away from me, O Lord, this cup!

―Translated by Ferial Ghazoul

About Fadwa Tuqan
From: Smith, Michael. Ed. “Contemporary Palestinian Poetry.” Free  Verse. english.chass.ncsu.edu. 2008. Web. http://freeversethejournal.org/Archives/Spring_2008/poems/M_Smith.html

 

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