“. . . I have prepared my poems And reclaimed my hand From the combat of the street . . .” Ibrahim Nasrallah

NEWS OF THE DAY

Israeli settlers raze lands near Nablus

WAFA
Mar 1 2020
Extremist Israeli settlers embarked today on razing tracts of land in the villages of Qusra and Jurish, to the south of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus, according to local sources.
– – – – Ghassan Daghlas, a local official in charge of monitoring settler violence, told WAFA that settlers used bulldozers to raze lands in an area belonging to the aforementioned villages.    More . . . .

Another push to make Qalandia Airport a Jewish settlement

AL-MONITOR – PALESTINE PULSE
Feb  28 2020
By Daoud Kuttab
In a move that appears to directly contradict the Donald Trump administration’s Mideast plan, the Israeli Housing Ministry announced Feb. 18 its intention to build 11,000 housing units on the grounds of the runway of the former Jerusalem airport, known as the Qalandia Airport (Atarot Airport).
– – – – The US “Peace to Prosperity” plan states: “The State of Israel should allow for the development by the State of Palestine of a special tourism zone in Atarot, in a specific area to be agreed upon by the parties.”
– – – – Atarot, according to the plan, “should be a world class tourist zone that should support Muslim tourism to Jerusalem and its holy sites,” and would include restaurants, shops, hotels, cultural centers, and other tourism facilities, along with “state-of-the-art public transportation that provides easy access to and from the holy sites.”     More . . . .

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (20– 26 February 2020)

PALESTINIAN CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
Feb 27 2020
Summary:
This week, PCHR documented 207 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli occupation forces (IOF) and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory.  As part of its excessive use of lethal force, IOF killed a Palestinian in Jerusalem and abused the body of a Palestinian in the southern Gaza Strip in a humiliating manner.  Moreover, IOF continued to use excessive force against the peaceful protests organized against Trump’s Peace Plan for the Middle East known as the “Deal of Century” that violates the rights of the Palestinian people and is in conflict with the United Nation (UN) resolutions and international law.  Meanwhile, settlers backed up by IOF continued to seize more civilian property and attack civilians and their property.     More . . . .

BACKGROUND/OPINION

The Systematic use of Torture and Ill-Treatment at Israeli Interrogation Centers … Cases of Torture Committed at al-Mascobiyya Interrogation Center

ADDAMEER Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
Jan 23 2020
Since its creation, the occupying state enforced and developed laws and practices that led to both the systematic use of torture and to absolute impunity for the perpetrator of this crime. Historically speaking, several torture methods were used against Palestinians, that included but were not limited to shaking, the baby chair, covering the head with a bag, forced listening to loud music, the closet, ripping of nails, and many other methods that were used to extract confessions from Palestinian detainees. In fact, since the beginning of the occupation in 1967, 73 Palestinian detainees were killed in Israeli interrogations.
– – – – The Israeli occupation authorities never stopped resorting to torture as the standard operating procedure in extracting confessions from Palestinian detainees. In point of fact, the crime of torture is systematic and widely-spread with the complicity of the Israeli judicial system. At the end of 2019, the intelligence agency “Shabak” subjected a number of detainees at al-Mascobiyya interrogation center to severe physical and psychological torture, without any form of monitoring and protection. Addameer is the legal representative for around 50 cases of the detainees in interrogations.    More . . . .

POEM OF THE DAY

“ABSENCE,” BY  IBRAHIM NASRALLAH

Who loves the winter as you do?
And is fascinated by trees that resist the wind as you do?
And who like you perfects life
With such innocent joy?
God!
If only you were with me now
I have prepared everything
The chestnuts and the fire,
I have pulled back the blinds
And raised my prayer to the gypsy rain
Pleaded that it persist in its discord
And eternal rites
God!
If only you were beside me now!
I have prepared my poems
And reclaimed my hand
From the combat of the street
From the merchants
And the brokers
And the guardsmen,
And a frost that has tried so often
To squeeze you out of my heart
From bullets that have repeatedly aimed
To swallow up the ring of your voice
As you commune with the buds
Or kindle the fire
God!
Had you been with me
We would have sung our song now
The one which the wind almost uproots from my voice
Each time I sing it alone

–Translation by Ibrahim Muhawi
From RAIN INSIDE: Selected Poems, by Ibrahim Nasrallah. Curbstone Press, 2009. Available from Google Books.

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