“. . . Prison did not turn him into a desert . . .” (Ahmed Dahbour)

❶ PSCC: Smear campaign targeting popular struggle activists

  • Background: “Conceptualising and Theorising Antisemitism and Racism: The Structural Context of Israel-Palestine.” Journal of Holy Land & Palestine Studies.

❷ Israeli forces suppress Friday rallies over Jerusalem recognition
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces detain former Palestinian prisoner during raid on Hebron-area town
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Israeli forces open fire at fishermen, detain 2 in northern Gaza
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴄ) Israeli forces detain four Palestinians from West Bank
❸ Israeli interrogation tactics lead to false confessions, Israeli court says
❹ POETRY by Ahmed  Dahbour
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Dec. 29, 2017 ― The Israeli occupation has been escalating its systematic intimidation of Palestinians since Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on the 6th of December 2017, The Popular Struggle Coordination Committee said in  a statement.
___Since Trump’s statement, 15 Palestinians were killed, including disabled Gaza activist Ibrahim Abu Thoria. Moreover, Israeli Forces continue to escalate their wave of arrests.
___As of Wednesday morning, the coordinator of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee, Munther Amira, 48, has been arrested by the Israeli occupation forces while participating in a demonstration at the northern entrance of Bethlehem city.
___Munther is currently facing charges of incitement and he is still under investigation. However, Munther is not the the only case. In the last few days, more than 8 activists have been arrested from Aida Refugee camp, and another 6 from the village of Bilin.   MORE . . .  

Shaw, Martin.
JOURNAL OF HOLY LAND & PALESTINE STUDIES, vol. 14, no. 2, Nov. 2015, pp. 149-164.
[. . . .] From its beginnings, Zionism shared common European assumptions about the inferiority of non-European peoples, and often portrayed Palestinian Arabs in classically racist terms . . .  the project of colonisation set up a structural conflict, in which . . .  racism was fostered. After 1948, this was reinforced by the process of dispossessing Palestinians, and the continuing conflict which this set up. While Palestinians inside Israel became citizens, they were manifestly second-class, since they were not members of the ‘Jewish nation’ to whom the state belonged. Palestinians outside Israel were perceived as more dangerous for Israel, with their responses to dispossession seen as a source of violent threats. In this context, the potential for racism could be said to have become structural for Israeli Jews . . .
___On the Palestinian side, too, a structural potential for racist characterisations of Jews was created. Israel had expelled or oppressed all Palestinians, in different ways, in the name of ‘the Jewish nation’. Nearly all Jews whom most Palestinians encountered were involved in and benefited from relations of oppression and exploitation towards them. The Jewish state encouraged a homogenous view of ‘Jews’ and ‘Israel’: it is not surprising that some Palestinians also identified the two, extending hostility from the state to Jews as such, even if many Palestinians and organised currents in Palestinian life have always recognised a distinction. This ‘subaltern’ anti-Jewish sentiment may be called ‘antisemitism’, and sometimes borrowed anti-Jewish stereotypes from classical repertoires, but its causes were the structural situation in which Palestinians found themselves.
[. . . .] . . . new manifestations of antisemitism in Europe are misunderstood if they are presented as separate not just from Israel’s violence in 2014, but from the wider pattern of racism which that violence stimulated. Yet no official or academic study of this antisemitism has simultaneously problematised the anti-Palestinian racism which has been produced in Israel, despite the fact that this has been on a much larger scale and has had much more serious consequences than the expressions of antisemitism in Europe. [. . . .] Even the most sophisticated academic attempts to assimilate antisemitism to the larger field of racism have raised only one side of the significance of Israel for racism, namely the ‘new antisemitism’ involved in some opposition to Israel. They have neglected the larger complex of racism of which contemporary antisemitism is a part . . .  an adequate conceptualisation of antisemitism as racism will lead us to examine the general field of racism in and surrounding the structural context of Israel- Palestine. Such an examination should explore the relationship between antisemitism in Europe . . .  and the more extensive and deepening anti-Palestinian racism in Israel-Palestine . . .  SOURCE . . . 

Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Dec. 29, 2017 ― Israeli forces Friday afternoon violently suppressed Palestinian rallies that continued to rock the occupied territories for the fourth consecutive Friday in protest of the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
___Israeli forces cracked down on several rallies in the southern West Bank district of Hebron, injuring three Palestinians.   MORE . . .
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 29, 2017 ― Israeli forces detained a former Palestinian prisoner and fired tear gas at locals during a raid early Friday morning into the Beit Ummar town, north of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank.
___Locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the town early Friday morning and searched several homes in the town. . .   Soldiers allegedly ransacked homes and broke the glass of doors and windows during the raid.   MORE . . . 
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 28, 2017 ― Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday morning.
___Locals said that Israeli naval ships chased down fishing boats off the coast of northern Gaza and opened fire at them. No injuries were reported.
___Israeli naval forces detained two fishermen . . .   the boats of the fishermen were confiscated.
___The Israeli army regularly detains and opens fire on unarmed Palestinian fishermen, shepherds, and farmers along the border areas if they approach the so-called ‘buffer zone’, as the authorities have not made clear the precise area of the designated zone.   MORE . . .    ..
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 29, 2017 ― Israeli forces Friday detained four Palestinians in multiple predawn raids across the West Bank, said security sources and an activist . . . Faqqua village, northeast of Jenin . . .  Fandaqumiya village, northwest of Jenin . . . Qalqiliya city . . .  Beit Ummar town, north of Hebron.    MORE . . . 
Days of Palestine
Dec. 29, 2017 ―  An Israel judge ripped into the Shin Bet, an Israeli intelligence service, for its interrogation tactics, saying they could lead people to confess crimes they did not commit.
___The panel of Be’er Sheva District Court judges has issued the opinion blasting the security service as part of a ruling explaining their acquittal last month of Khalil Nimri, a Palestinian accused of terrorism.
___Israeli newspaper Haaretz said that the court found that Nimri, who had been charged with planning an attack on Eilat hotel, had confessed under interrogation to acts that it was doubtful that he committed.
___”The Shin Bet needs to take a good look at itself so that interrogation techniques, which do indeed sometimes uncover dangerous acts of terrorism, aren’t also liable to induce innocent people to admit to acts that they did not commit,” the judges wrote.    MORE . . .

(To Abu Faris. . . who has been there)

Prison teaches that the heart is a desert,
That light is a desert.
It curses the fire and the land of the commandos.
Prison teaches that water is a chameleon,
That the landscape is a snake,
That echo is treacherous, and the wind an enemy.
Prison teaches that the guide’s sight grows dim,
And that the homeland departs.
Prison is a black kingdom in the sand;
Prison is a sword guarding the eyelids;
Prison . . . not the homeland!
So how, my beloved homeland, will the beloved ones survive?

Here we are, no complaints and no regrets,
We never say: an aimless wandering!
Blood gushes forth from the depths of our love.
Prison assaults but does not hit the mark;
Our wounds hit back,
Reaching out like water . . . like the wilderness,
Promising the light with a new light.
From deep within us, signaling twice!
Our cub child,
And the fire of salvation.
We see it, yes we do.
We are not dreaming,
We almost step into his joyous landscape
We almost do.
This is the moment of travail in our difficult labor,
We hug the newborn―
He who springs from our very ecstasy,
Whose kicks we feel in our guts,
Who teaches the hungry what he knows
And declares in words well understood:
Revolution, revolution . . . till life.

The inmate has not lost his features in the sand,
Prison did not turn him into a desert.
From his hunger, water and vegetation sprang.
When silence wounds him,
He can break it with a sigh,
But he endures.
His testimony:
Near death, there were exhaustion and fatigue,
His executioner pressing him to promise
A word . . . a groan, or to divulge his secret,
But all in vain.
His countenance was radiating in the sand
Like an oasis,
For prison had not turned him into a desert.

About Ahmad Dahbur. And here.
From THE  PALESTINIAN  WEDDING:  A  BILINGUAL  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE  POETRY.  Ed. and Trans. A. M. Elmessiri. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2011. Reprint from Three Continents Press, Inc., 1982. Available from Palestine Online Store. 

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