“. . . you would think the very how and what of being were in doubt.” (Reja-e Busailah)

Selected reports of the day

Israeli forces detain 17 Palestinians from West Bank

Tuesday, August 20, 2019
Hebron — Israeli forces dawn Tuesday detained 17 Palestinians from various parts of the occupied West Bank, said Palestine Prisoner’s Society (PPS).
· · · · Israeli vehicles raided Beit Kahel town, northwest of Hebron, where soldiers detained six Palestinians, including three brothers of Kassem Asafra, one of two Palestinians suspected of killing an off-duty Israeli soldier outside the settlement of Ofra almost two weeks ago . . . .
· · · · Israeli forces carry out frequent raids across the West Bank—including occupied East Jerusalem—on the pretext of searching for “wanted” Palestinians, triggering clashes with residents.
· · · · These raids, which take place also in areas under the full control of the Palestinian Authority, are conducted with no need for a search warrant, whenever and wherever the Israeli forces go in keeping with its sweeping arbitrary powers.
· · · · According to Palestinian figures, roughly 5,700 Palestinians — including numerous women and children — are currently languishing in Israeli detention facilities.  More . . . .

Hamas raises $100,000 for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon

Entsar Abu Jahal
August 19, 2019
Hamas leader Khalil al-Haya said in a statement Aug. 6 that Hamas had launched a donation campaign in the Gaza Strip to support Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and collected $100,000 from Gaza’s inhabitants.
· · · He said the contributions will soon be sent to Lebanon and praised Gaza’s citizens for being generous and loyal to their roots despite the blockade and tough circumstances. Haya also said Hamas is launching a campaign to support the inhabitants of Wadi al-Homs in East Jerusalem after Israel destroyed 100 apartments there in July.
· · · While some Gazans praised the campaign to help Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, others wondered about its timing given the tough circumstances Gaza residents are living under. Some residents said that the Gaza Strip should be the priority when it comes to support campaigns and that Hamas should alleviate citizens’ suffering first and foremost . . . .
· · · · He noted that the Gaza Strip, a main target and at the forefront of confrontations with Israel, sought to underline its readiness to support Palestinians in Jerusalem and the diaspora, as it considers itself the core of the Palestinian cause. He said the campaign carries more of a political importance than an economic  said Hamas should have launched a similar campaign to support the resilience of Gaza’s poor citizens. More . . . .

Political upheaval over Tlaib and Omar shows the power of BDS

Philip Weiss
August 17, 2019
We are in the middle of a political upheaval on Israel/Palestine in the United States, and Americans who are concerned with Palestinian human rights live for these moments. They are the moments of potential change: When more tarnish is added to Israel’s image, and Americans get a clearer picture of what the Jewish state actually means for non-Jews under its sovereignty.
· · · Since I’ve been covering the issue there have been several such moments. The Israeli assault on Gaza in 2008-09. The Israeli assault on Gaza in 2014. Netanyahu’s showdowns with Obama over settlements, the Iran deal (2011, 2015). The move of the embassy last year with Israel’s slaughter of some 60 nonviolent protesters at the Gaza fence. . . .
· · · The story has been a wakeup call in the U.S. to how far right/intolerant Israeli society is. Despite Israel’s apologists’ efforts to blame the US leader for the move (Bari Weiss, MSNBC, the New York Times), a lot of Americans are blaming the country that won’t let our congresspeople in even though we give it more foreign aid than any other country, $3.8 billion a year.   More . . . .

Rashida Tlaib’s Grandmother: ‘I Love Her and I Am So Proud of Her’

August 18, 2019
The Palestinian grandmother of Rashida Tlaib [told the Washington Post] she was proud of her granddaughter’s pro-Palestine stance after the US Congresswoman was barred from traveling to Israel. Muftiyah Tlaib, who lives in the family’s village of Beit Ur Al-Foqa in the occupied West Bank. . .  More . . . .

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (01– 07 August 2019)

August 8, 2019
· · · Great March of Return in Eastern Gaza Strip: 72 civilians injured, including 30 children, 3 women, one of them is a paramedic, and 2 journalists by Israeli forces.
· · · Occupied East Jerusalem: 2 Civilians Injured.
· · · 91 civilians, including 9 children, arrested during 65 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.   More . . . .

Poem of the Day


Rickety is the sun,
the young year’s bones damaged from within,
neither the bright fruit of the grove
nor the air perfumed with its breath
can dispel the apprehension:

behind, the sore feet and buttocks of the mountains,
like a child’s who hasn’t done his lessons,
and still bare and swollen from the whippings of winter,
and the peaks aren’t done smarting
from the screeching and scratching of the winds:

before, the shallow sky, like a boy
who hasn’t yet learned how to interpret scars
hangs over the liquid expanse
where so much is iffy, you would think
the very how and what of being were in doubt.

From Reja-e Busailah. POEMS OF A PALESTINIAN BOYHOOD. Smoke Stack Books, 2019.

“I am the root of a thousand olive trees” (Ramzy Baroud)

Selected News of the Day

Palestinians foil attempt by US embassy to convene a meeting for youth in Ramallah

August 19, 2019
Palestinians foiled an attempt by the US embassy in Israel to hold a meeting for Palestinian youth in the West Bank city of Ramallah after the hotel where the meeting was supposed to take place has informed the embassy that it cannot host it, today said Issam Baker, coordinator of the National Forces in Ramallah. . .   The Palestinians are boycotting all US-sponsored activity after the US recognized Jerusalem as capital of Israel and moved its embassy to the city, closed the Palestinian representative office in Washington, stopped funding Jerusalem hospitals, cut off funding from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, and cancelled the term occupied territories from the West Bank, among other anti-Palestinian steps.   More. . . .

What occupation looks like for Rashida Tlaib’s village in the West Bank 

By Dror Etkes, +972 Magazine
August 19, 2019
Forty years of land grabs, settlement expansion, and the building of a highway that is off limits to Palestinians. This is what is happening to Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib’s village.
The West Bank village of Beit Ur al-Fauqa made headlines over the weekend, after Democratic Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib announced she would not accept Israel’s offer for a “humanitarian visit” to see family, and particularly her aging grandmother.
Beyond Tlaib’s personal story, however, is the story of a village that has seen decades of land grabs for the purpose of Israeli settlement expansion and the construction of a bypass road, which Palestinian residents of the West Bank have been banned from using for nearly two decades.  More. . . .

Israel kills three Palestinians in besieged Gaza Strip

Officials say three Palestinians killed, one wounded, after overnight Israeli attacks in northern Gaza.
August 18, 2019
At least three Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the north of the Gaza Strip, according to Palestinian health officials and local media, hours after three rockets were allegedly fired from the blockaded enclave.
Maan news agency said on Sunday at least one other Palestinian suffered “critical” injuries following the overnight attack. . . . In a statement issued late on Saturday, the Israeli army said an attack helicopter and tank had fired at “armed suspects” along the fence that separates Israel from the besieged Gaza Strip, home to more than two million Palestinians. . . . Israel has waged three wars on Gaza since 2008. The Gaza Health Ministry said that since the start of the weekly Great March of Return protests last year, the Israeli army has killed more than 300 demonstrators and wounded 17,000 others, who were officially referred to hospitals.   More. . . .

Are Palestinian construction permits Israel’s way to annex Area C?

Tamam Mohsen, Al-Monitor: Palestine Pulse
August 8, 2019
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — The Israeli Cabinet approved July 30 the construction of 715 houses for Palestinians in Area C. Such a rare step came one day before US President Donald Trump’s senior adviser Jared Kushner arrived in Israel, as part of the US administration’s preparations to announce the details of the peace plan, also known as the “deal of the century,” in the upcoming months.
Nevertheless, the construction plan — which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suggested and which gives the green light for the construction of 6,000 housing units in the West Bank settlements as well — has been rejected by the Palestinians and has ignited the ire of Israeli’s right wing.
The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a July 30 statement, “Every day, the Israeli government shows that it deals with the occupied Palestinian territories classified as Area C as a strategic reserve for the settlements.” The ministry warned against any Israeli attempt to turn all settlements and outposts into a single settlement bloc that is grouped geographically “into a Jewish state for the settlers in the West Bank.”   More. . . .

Poem of the Day


The bones of my ancestors are the foundation
On which the mountains of Galilee stand.

Our ruggedness might not suit your taste
But we inherited the language of trees.

I am the root of a thousand olive trees
A legacy that will grow through my children

I will fight to preserve my essence until my son
Is old enough to inherit his grandmother’s Thoub*

She lost her childhood amidst dying peasants
Before walking the beaten road of exile and hope

Pleading at every checkpoint, she was the face in her photo
Searching for a home between Haifa and Eternity.

So, don’t talk to me about the Pharaoh: My
Father’s blood drenched the skin of Jesus

After the Romans caught him at a checkpoint
Hiding a recipe for revolution, and a love poem

And all the love letters of refugee women
Sent to men suspended on crosses

Overlooking the Martyrs Graveyard
Echoing the battle cries of Jaffa.

From I  REMEMBER  MY  NAME, ed. Vacy Vlanza. London: Novum Publishing, 2016.

*Dress, garment