“. . . You did not leave me land to plow . . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|  US  WARNS  OF  ‘CONSEQUENCES’  AS  PALESTINE  JOINS  INTERNATIONAL  BODIES
The United States has threatened “consequences” as Palestinians step up efforts for statehood demanding accession to almost a dozen international bodies and conventions.    ___The threat came after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas signed the documents on Thursday to join the Universal Postal Union, a UN agency that coordinates international postage, and 10 international protocols and conventions.    ___The move infuriated the US, Israel’s staunch ally, with a State Department official claiming that the Palestinian efforts to join international institutions were “premature” and “counterproductive.”    More . . .
|  ISRAEL  RAZES  LAND,  CONFISCATES  VEHICLES  IN  EAST  JERUSALEM
The staff members of the Israeli Nature and Parks Authority and the Jerusalem Municipality stormed the Silwan neighborhood, in occupied East Jerusalem, under the heavy protection of Israeli forces, on Monday.    ___A Ma’an reporter said Israeli bulldozers razed a land in the SILWAN NEIGHBORHOOD, which belonged to Palestinian resident, Khaled al-Zir.    ___ [. . . .] Israeli forces also confiscated several vehicles in the neighborhood under the pretext that the owners did not obtain an Israeli license.    ___The United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization’s (UNESCO) World Heritage Committee adopted a resolution in July 2017 reaffirming the international body’s non-recognition of Israeli sovereignty in East Jerusalem, and condemned Israeli policies in the Old City.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Palestinian  family  forced  at  gunpoint  [from]  their  land  in  BETHLEHEM
. . . . Related  Israeli  Army  Launches  Limited  Incursion  into  GAZA
. . . . Related  IOF  attacks  schoolchildren,  settlers  vandalize  property  in  URIF  [NABLUS]
. . . . Related  Dozens  of  Palestinian  students  injured  in  IOF  attack  [HEBRON]
|
  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION  FORCES  ARREST  22  PALESTINIANS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK
The Israeli occupation forces arrested 22 Palestinian citizens from the West Bank on Monday morning.    ___IOF arrested the head of the student union council, Yahya Aqel Rabie at  Birzeit University  during raids in the village of Mazra’a al-Gharbiya, northwest of RAMALLAH, the center of the occupied West Bank.    ___Local sources report that military patrols stormed the village and began to raid houses. The Israeli occupation forces arrested Rabie during a raid on his family’s house and was taken to an unknown destination.    More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
THE  NEW  NEW  ANTI-SEMITISM
By Richard Falk
I along with many others am being victimized these days. They are being labeled anti-Semites, and in some instances, self-hating Jews as well. This is a Zionist and Israeli effort to shut down our voices and punish our non-violent activism, with special venom directed at the BDS Campaign because it has become so effective in recent years. This negative branding of the opposition is being called ‘the new anti-Semitism.’ The old anti-Semitism was simply hatred of Jews as expressed through negative images and attitudes. . .  The new anti-Semitism is criticism of Israel and Zionism. . .  The false premise is equating Zionism with Jews, automatically making criticism and opposition to the Zionist state of Israel as anti-Semitism. . .  [. . . .] we who are attacked as new anti-Semites are really trying to honor our human identity, and to reject tribalist loyalties or geopolitical alignments, in our commitment to the realization of Palestinian rights. . .  As Jews to hold Israel accountable under standards that were used to condemn Nazi surviving political and military leaders is to honor the legacy of the Holocaust, not to defile it.  More . . .
|  ‘WE  HOPE  THE  REGIME  LASTS’:  WHEN  ISRAEL  ENJOYED  COZY  TIES  WITH  BRAZIL’S  MILITARY  DICTATORSHIP
Just under a month ago, following an especially tumultuous election season, Brazilians elected Jair Bolsonaro as president of their country. Bolsonaro has been a member of the National Congress, Brazil’s parliament, since 1990, where he was part of a group of vocal, extreme-right backbenchers who longed for the days of the military dictatorship that ruled Brazil from 1964 until 1985.    ___His election was welcomed by the Israeli right, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu going so far as to announce he would attend Bolsonaro’s swearing-in ceremony in January.    More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .
| EYEWITNESS  PALESTINE    It is our pleasure to share this Annual Report detailing the recent accomplishments of Eyewitness Palestine. In the past year, we have:  Dispatched 4 delegations and 96 delegates to meet with peace-builders in Palestine/Israel . . .   Rolled out a Racial Justice and Equity curriculum . . .  Distributed $161,540 in financial aid . . .  Expanded our online network to more than 25,000 people . . .   Dramatically increased the diversity of Eyewitness Palestine delegations . . .    Information about delegations . . .  Donate . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“A  DIALOGUE  WITH  A  MAN  WHO  HATES  ME,”  BY  MAHMOUD  DARWISH
Rome was burnt, O crazy man
..Rome is more durable than Nero
Rome will not grasp your poems
..She can recite them by heart
Rome will slice your strings
..My tunes arise from my heart
Your voice echoes a miserable past
..My voice echoes a rocket rage
Your path is long
..I shall not tire
Yehuda** sold you
..I shall not be crucified
My ancestors were cremated in Auschwitz
..My heart is with them

..Pull out the wires from my skin

And the wounds of yesterday?
..A shameful scar―in the face of the executioner over there
What do you carry in your head
..A little wheat
What’s in your chest?
..A picture of a wound
Your face reflects a rancor color
..My face reflects the color of the earth
Then convert your sword into plowshare
..You did not leave me land to plow
You criminal!
..I did not steal―did not kill―didn’t oppress
You Arab! You are a dog!
..O man, may God cure your soul
..Why don’t you try the taste of love
..Why don’t you make way for the sun!!

** The Israeli town of Or Yehuda was established in 1950 on the lands of the depopulated Palestinian villages of Saqiya and Kfar ‘Ana. Jews from Iraq and North Africa settled there.

From: Aruri, Naseer and Edmund Ghareeb, eds. ENEMY  OF  THE  SUN:  POETRY  OF  THE  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE. Washington, DC: Drum and Spear Press, 1970.  Available.

“. . . they say he will come back, suspended . . .” (Zuhair Abu Shaib)

490762CMedical sources reported that Abdullah Hamayel sustained fractures and bruises in various areas of his body due to the violent assault by Israeli forces. (Photo: Ma’an News Agency, Nov. 9, 2018)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . . .
|    WEEKLY  REPORT  ON  ISRAELI  HUMAN  RIGHTS  VIOLATIONS  IN  THE  OCCUPIED  PALESTINIAN  TERRITORY  (01  –  07  NOVEMBER  2018)   Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)
Israeli forces continue systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)  Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against unarmed civilians and peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip:

  • A civilian succumbed to wounds he sustained during his participation in the Return and Breaking Siege protests.
  • 77 civilians, including 12 children, a woman, a journalist and 3 paramedics, were wounded; 4 of them sustained serious wounds.
  • [. . . .] Israeli forces wounded 12 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children and a woman, in the West Bank.
  • Israeli forces conducted 88 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and 2 limited ones into the southern Gaza Strip.   53 civilians, including 11 children and a woman, were arrested in the West Bank.    More . . .

|    ISRAELI  FORCES  REPEATEDLY  ASSAULT  AL-BIREH  MUNICIPALITY  EMPLOYEE 
Israeli forces assaulted and injured Abdullah Hamayel, a Palestinian staff member of the al-Bireh Municipality, late Thursday, while passing by on the road leading to the illegal Israeli settlement of Maale Mikhmas, built on the lands of Mikhmas Palestinian village, in the central occupied Ramallah district.     [. . . .] The reason for the assault remained unknown.    More . . .
. . . . Related    ISRAEL  BANS  JERUSALEM  GOVERNOR  ENTRY  TO  WEST  BANK
. . . . Related    ISRAELI  FORCES  ARREST  8-YEAR-OLD  NEAR  HEBRON
. . . . Related    PALESTINIANS  REINSTALL  MONUMENT  TO  PALESTINIAN  MARTYR    Background
. . . . Related    IOA  HAND  EVICTION  NOTICES  TO  AGRICULTURAL  LAND  IN  SOUTHERN  WEST  BANK
. . . . Related    LIEBERMAN  AGREES  TO  RETURN  BODY  OF  MARTYR

resized_476fe-1551_eng_picture_20181022_16710948_16710943
Jerusalem’s Palestinian governor, Adnan Ghaith, was detained without explanation. (Photo: Anadolu Agency, Oct. 22, 2018)

|    BDS  VICTORY:  UNIVERSITY  OF  LEEDS  DIVESTS  FROM  ISRAEL-LINKED  FIRMS    A UK university has ended investment in companies involved in Israeli arms trade following a fierce student-led BDS campaign.    ___The University of Leeds has ceased its dealings with Airbus, United Technologies and Keyence Corporation – all of which supply military equipment to Israel.    More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|    ECONOMIC  DISENGAGEMENT  AND  NATIONAL  DEVELOPMENT  IN  PALESTINE
By Dr. Mohammad Mustafa, Chairman of Palestine Investment Fund
Given the political deadlock we have reached, the Palestinian leadership is in the process of reviewing the framework governing our relationship with Israel.    ___The notion of economic disengagement from Israel is top of mind for the Palestinian leadership; and with it the need to revise or terminate the Paris Economic Protocol that was signed between the PLO and Israel in April 1994 . . .   the creation of a custom union with free movement of people and goods, and unified taxation between Palestine and Israel.    ___Israel’s unilateral actions over the years . . .  have effectively abolished the essence of the Paris Protocol, and created in its place a system to cement the Palestinian economy’s captivity to Israel.    More . . .
|    THE  THOUSANDS  OF  UNDOCUMENTED  GAZANS  LIVING  IN  LIMBO
By Amjad Yaghni
Wafaa Abu Hajjaj has been active in the media industry in Gaza for the past eight years, working as a correspondent for various local and regional television news outlets. But she has also been deprived of dozens of job opportunities abroad because she doesn’t have a Palestinian identification card. Without it, she can’t be officially employed or access government services.    __Abu Hajjaj and her father are among thousands of undocumented Palestinians in Gaza.    ___Israel withdrew its military and civilian presence from the Strip in 2005, but one of the countless ways it still exercises immense control over the lives of Gazans is through its control over the Palestinian population registry. Many simple types of changes to the registry, including changing the address or place of one’s residence, still require the Israeli army’s approval.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . .

“MARTYR,”  BY  ZUHAIR  ABU  SHAIB
When they found him
he had become an emerald flame;
as when they lifted his arms they found
sheaves of wheat where a heart should be;
and they say those sheaves were whispering
beneath his shirt; and they say the wild birds
ferried his blood to his family, drop by drop;
and they say he will come back, suspended
in the hidden tree at the burning heart of volcanoes
and that his mother will fold him in her arms.
But when they found him he was an emerald flame,
so they stitched together rose petals for a shroud
and smoothed out the sky to keep him warm
and for a pillows, they lifted down the sun
and laid it beneath his head.
—Trans. By John Glenday

Zuhair Abu Shaib was born in Deir al-Ghusun and studied at Yarmouk University. She was a teacher and journalist in Yemen, and a book designer. She was also editor of the journal Awarq.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014). Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . Your land is no holier than my backyard . . .” (Lahab Assef Al-Jundi)

❶ Israeli forces demolish structures, notify to demolish homes in Silwan
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) A child [from Nabi Saleh village] with an IOF bullet in his skull
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Video: IOF shoot, injure four Palestinians in Hebron clashes

  • Background: “Boycotting Apartheid from South Africa to Palestine.” Peace Review

❷ PPS: since Trump announcement, Israeli forces have detained over 600 Palestinians
. . . . . ❷― (ᴀ) Video: Right-wing Israeli minister harasses Palestinians visiting imprisoned relatives
. . . . . ❷― (ᴃ) ICRC slams MK’s harassment of Palestinian prisoners’ families relatives
. . . . . ❷― (ᴄ) Abu Marzouk: Israelis should think it over before trying to ape Haza
❸ POETRY by Lahab Assef Al-Jundi
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  DEMOLISH  STRUCTURES,  NOTIFY  TO  DEMOLISH  HOMES  IN  SILWAN    
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA   
Dec. 26, 2017 ― Israeli forces Tuesday demolished two structures and notified to demolish a number of homes in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, under the pretext of construction without a permit, according to WAFA correspondent.
___Israeli police accompanied by bulldozers broke into Silwan area in the early morning hours and demolished a structure and an animal shack, according to the Silwan-based Wadi Hilweh Information Center.  MORE . . .   
.  .  .  .  . ❶ ― (ᴀ) A  CHILD  [FROM  NABI  SALEH  VILLAGE]  WITH  AN  IOF  BULLET  IN  HIS  SKULL 
The Palestinian Information Center     
Dec. 25, 2017 ― On the 15th of December 2017, Mohammed climbed his house’s three-meter wall, to watch the movement of Israeli occupation forces (IOF), yet there was a soldier lying down, and watching his movement. The soldier shot the 15-year-old boy with a single bullet that penetrated his face. The boy fell from the top of the wall and hit the ground.     MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  . ❶ ―  (ᴃ)  VIDEO:  IOF  SHOOT,  INJURE  FOUR  PALESTINIANS  IN  HEBRON  CLASHES    
Palestine News Network – PNN 
Dec. 26, 2017 ― Four Palestinians were shot and injured with live bullets and others suffocated on Tuesday during separate clashes with Israeli forces in the town of Sa’ir and nearby al-Arroub refugee camp, to the north of Hebron, according to local and security sources.
___Israeli forces raided al-Aroub refugee camp, spurring clashes with locals. Forces fired live bullets at residents, shooting and injuring three in the foot.  They were transferred to hospital for medical treatment. Their medical condition is still unknown, WAFA reported.
___Forces further attacked residents’ homes with tear gas canisters, causing many to suffocate as a result of teargas inhalation.    MORE . . . 

Di Stefano, Paul and Mostafa Henaway.
“BOYCOTTING  APARTHEID  FROM  SOUTH  AFRICA  TO  PALESTINE.”
PEACE REVIEW, vol. 26, no. 1, Jan-Mar2014, pp. 19-27.
[. . . .] There is little doubt that Israel’s international membership in numerous diplomatic and economic forums “provides both an unmerited veneer of respectability and material support for its crimes.” In fact, a key challenge of this facet of the BDS strategy is to keep international attention focused on Israeli human rights violations, so the Palestinian struggle is not subsumed under the veneer of normalization prevalent in international relations. Normalization is anathema to achieving rights and ending oppression because it allows Israelis to gain while Palestinians lose. Normalization accepts the humanity and dignity of Israelis while actively denying Palestinians their own. It obfuscates the Palestinian reality of oppression and colonialism and improperly casts the relationship between colonizers and colonized as symmetrical. BDS asserts the notion that oppression must end before peace can take place. Neve Gordon urges, “Outside pressure is the only answer. . . . Words and condemnations have not yielded results, not even a settlement freeze . . . nothing else has worked.” Noura Erakat notes that “the tripartite strategy is rooted in economic logic: Israel must comply with international law because non-compliance is too politically and economically costly to maintain . . . ” Therefore, the key to changing the conditions for Palestinians is to politically isolate Israel by calling for sanctions against it. In effect, these sanctions serve to buttress the varied boycotts by grassroots organizations that, in turn, threaten to alter the status quo. . . .    SOURCE . . . 

❷  PPS:  SINCE  TRUMP  ANNOUNCEMENT,  ISRAELI  FORCES  HAVE  DETAINED  OVER  600  PALESTINIANS
Ma’an News Agency  
Dec. 26, 2017 ― Israeli forces detained at least 24 Palestinians during pre dawn raids Tuesday across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, according to Palestinian sources.
___The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) reported that as of Tuesday the number of Palestinians detained by Israeli forces since the US President’s declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel three weeks ago, stands at 610 Palestinians, including 170 minors, 12 women and three injured detainees.     MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷―  (ᴀ)  VIDEO:  RIGHT-WING  ISRAELI  MINISTER  HARASSES  PALESTINIANS  VISITING  IMPRISONED  RELATIVES
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 25, 2017 ― An ultra right-wing Israeli minister verbally harassed Palestinians from Gaza as they traveled on a bus to visit their imprisoned relatives in souther Israel’s Nafha prison, hurling abuse at women on the bus calling their sons “dogs.”
___MK Oren Hazan of the right-wing Likud party, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s party, intercepted and boarded a bus of Palestinian families traveling to Nafha prison on Monday.
___As he confronted the Palestinian families, he turned to the mother of an imprisoned Palestinian and asked, “Who did you come to visit? What did your son do?” to which she replied “He did not do anything.”
___Hazan responded to the mother by saying “Your son is a dog. He’s a dog. You come to visit the scum who are sitting here in prison, whom you see as your family members.”   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷―  (ᴃ)  ICRC  SLAMS  MK’S  HARASSMENT  OF  PALESTINIAN  PRISONERS’  FAMILIES  RELATIVES  
The Palestinian Information Center
Dec. 25, 2017 ― The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Monday slammed an Israeli Knesset member for intercepting a bus of Palestinian families visiting their imprisoned sons in Israeli jails.
___ICRC spokeswoman Soheir Zaqout said that the Committee is following with concern what happened during the visit, stressing that the families of Palestinian prisoners have the right to visit their sons with dignity.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  . ❷ ―  (ᴄ)  ABU  MARZOUK:  ISRAELIS  SHOULD  THINK  IT  OVER  BEFORE  TRYING  TO  APE  HAZAN
The Palestinian Information Center   
Dec. 25, 2017 ― Member of Hamas’s political bureau Mousa Abu Marzouk has said that Israeli leaders should think twice before trying to copy Knesset member Oren Hazan and bully families of Palestinian prisoners who seek to see their relatives in Israeli jails.
___“Hazan’s savage behavior reflected the fragility of this rogue entity whose leaders are looking for fake heroism,” Abu Marzouk said in Twitter remarks on Monday.  MORE . . . 

“HOLY  LANDERS,”  BY  LAHAB  ASSEF  AL-JUNDI

Listen!
You are fighting over a land that can fit,
with wilderness to spare,
in the Panhandle of Texas.

You are building walls to segregate,
splitting wholes till little is left,
killing and dying for pieces of sky
in the same window.

The olive trees are dying
of embarrassment.
They have enough fruits
and pits for all of you.
All they want is for you to stop
uprooting them.
Sending your children to die
in their names.

Listen!
Your land is no holier than my backyard.
None of you is any more chosen
the homeless veteran panhandling
with a God Bless cardboard sign
at the light of Mecca
and San Pedro.
Draw a borderline around the place.
Call it home for all the living,
all the dead
all the tired exiles with its dust
gummed on their tongues.

There are no heroes left.

Lahab Assef Al-Jundi was born, and grew up, in Damascus, Syria. Attended The University of Texas in Austin, where he graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering. Not long after graduation, he discovered his passion for writing. He published his first poetry collection, “A Long Way”, in 1985. His poetry has appeared in numerous literary publications, and many Anthologies including: “In These Latitudes, Ten Contemporary Poets”, edited by Robert Bonazzi, “Inclined to Speak, An Anthology of Contemporary Arab American Poetry”, edited by Hayan Charara, and “Between Heaven and Texas”, edited by Naomi Shihab Nye.

 

 

“The Temple Mount is under Israeli sovereignty, period . . .” (Avi Dichter, Likud member of Israeli Knessett)

❶ Video: Israel attacks Jerusalem worshippers
❷ Netanyahu orders searching all worshipers entering al- Aqsa
❸ In alleged first, Jewish BDS activists prevented from boarding flight to Israel

  • Background: “No Space for Apartheid: Toward an Academic Boycott of Israel among Geographers.” Geographical Review

❹ POETRY by Al-Raheem Mahmoud (1913-1948)
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ VIDEO:  ISRAEL  ATTACKS  JERUSALEM  WORSHIPPERS   
The Electronic Intifada
Maureen Clare Murphy
July 26, 2017.   Israeli occupation forces attacked Palestinian worshippers at the Lions Gate entrance to the al-Aqsa mosque compound in East Jerusalem on Tuesday night.
___The Palestinian Quds news outlet reported that Israeli forces fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters, wounding dozens, and prevented ambulances from reaching the area.
___Palestinian worshippers had continued to keep vigil outside the mosque compound on Tuesday. The Waqf religious trust that administers the site had called for continuation of a boycott as it evaluated the situation after Israel removed metal detectors the night before.
[. . . . ]  Meanwhile Avi Dichter, a senior Israeli lawmaker from Netanyahu’s Likud party who formerly headed the country’s secret police, told Israeli television that the government had decided “to turn the Temple Mount into a sterile area – with all that this entails,” employing the term Israel uses for the mosque compound.
___“The Temple Mount is under Israeli sovereignty, period,” he said.     MORE . . .
❷ NETANYAHU  ORDERS  SEARCHING  ALL  WORSHIPERS  ENTERING  AL- AQSA
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency
July 26, 2017.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered the police to search worshipers entering the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque, a day after the removal of the electronic gates and replace it by smart cameras system, which will be completed within six months.
___According to the Walla website, the decision was taken following a telephone call between Netanyahu and Israeli Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan, they agreed to search worshipers entering the Aqsa Mosque individually and through hand-held metal checks, because of  the security sensitivity of the location, according to the Israeli appeals.
___According to a poll made by Hebrew channel 2, 77% of the Israelis believes that the removal of the electronic gate is a retreat by the Israeli government, 17% does not think that it is a retreat, while just 6% has no idea.       MORE . . .
❸ IN  ALLEGED  FIRST,  JEWISH  BDS  ACTIVISTS  PREVENTED  FROM  BOARDING  FLIGHT  TO  ISRAEL  
Ma’an News Agency
July 25, 2017.  The Israeli government and its international supporters continued to crack down on the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, as five members of an American interfaith delegation to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory were prevented from boarding their flight from Washington D.C. to Tel Aviv on Monday.
___US-based organization Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) released a report saying five members of the delegation were denied entry to Israel, allegedly due to their activism with the BDS movement, which targets companies that act in compliance with Israel’s illegal occupation of East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
[. . . .] JVP identified the five members that were denied entry on the flight as JVP Deputy Director Rabbi Alissa Wise, Alana Krivo-Kaufman and Noah Habeeb, both members of JVP, Rick Ufford Chase of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, and Shakeel Syed, a national board member with American Muslims for Palestine.     MORE . . .

Ross, Robert B. “NO  SPACE  FOR  APARTHEID:  TOWARD  AN  ACADEMIC  BOYCOTT  OF  ISRAEL  AMONG  GEOGRAPHERS.”
Geographical Review,
vol. 106, no. 2, Apr. 2016, pp. 276-282.
[. . . .]  Against this backdrop of inequality, bloodshed, and institutionalized racism, Palestinian civil society has called upon the international community to engage in boycotts, divestment, and sanctions in order to put political and economic pressure on Israel until Palestinians have their full slate of human rights.
[. . . .] Israeli universities have been deeply embedded in the Israeli state’s efforts to attack, invade, ethnically cleanse, and occupy Palestine And as Lisa Taraki writes, “[g]enerally, there have never been any protests by professional and academic associations of physicists, physicians, geographers, mathematicians, political scientists, architects, and others in Israel regarding the moral and professional implications of collaboration with the [Israeli] army.”
___Palestinian academics and intellectuals have therefore called upon the international community to boycott Israeli academic institutions as a key part of the broader BDS movement.
[. . . .] Collaboration and connections between academic institutions and militaries are not, of course, unique to Israel. Many universities in the United States, for example, receive research funding from the Pentagon . . .   The GI Bill enables former American soldiers to attend college free of charge. The prevalence of ties between universities and the military, in America and elsewhere, has led some opponents of the academic boycott of Israel to reply, “why are you not calling for a boycott of American universities? After all, the United States engages in gross human rights abuses too.” The difference is quite simple: the people oppressed by American policies are not calling for an academic boycott of American universities. But Palestinian civil society is calling for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions. To boycott Israeli academic institutions is thus to respond to a call from Palestinian civil society. It is a principled act of solidarity.      SOURCE . . .

(The poem is a salute to Prince Saud Ibn ‘Abd al’Aziz when he visited the poet’s town, ‘Anabta, on August 14, 1935.)

“THE  AQSA  MOSQUE,”  BY  ‘ABD  AL-RAHEEM  MAHMOUD  (1913-1948)
Honorable Prince! Before you stands a poet
whose heart harbors bitter complaint.
Have you come to visit the Aqsa mosque
or to bid it farewell before its loss?
This land, this holy land, is being sold to all intruders
and stabbed by its own people!
And tomorrow looms over us, nearer and nearer!
Nothing shall remain for us but our streaming tears,
our deep regrets.

Oh, Prince, shout, shout! Your voice
might shake people awake!
Ask the guards of the Aqsa: are they all agreed to struggle
as one body and mind?
Ask the guards of the Aqsa: can a covenant with God
be offered to someone, then lost?
Forgive the complaint, but a grieving heart needs to complain
to the Prince, even if it makes him weep.
(This poem gained great fame later on because of its prophetic words about the imminent loss of Palestine.)

About ‘Abd al-Raheem Mahmoud
ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE.  Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

 

“. . . It is my right to behold the sun . . .” (Fouzi El-Asmar)

IMG_3055 - Copy
Ofer Prison gate. (Photo, a rainy day in November, 2015, Harold Knight)

❶ Palestinian prisoners enter 20th day of mass hunger strike
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ)   18th day of hunger strike: More prisoners join mass hunger strike

  • Background from journal Public Health Ethics

❷ Solidarity strikes spreading through Europe after Manchester and Edinburgh student hunger strikes launched
❸ Links to related articles
❹ POETRY by Fouzi El-Asmar
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
PALESTINIAN  PRISONERS  ENTER  20TH  DAY  OF  MASS  HUNGER  STRIKE
Ma’an News Agency
May 6, 2017
Some 1,600 Palestinian prisoners entered their 20th day of a mass hunger strike demanding humane treatment in Israeli prisons and an end to Israel’s policy of imprisoning Palestinians without charge or trial, as more Palestinian prisoners have joined the strike, while Israel Prison Service (IPS) has continued cracking down on the hunger strikers.
___According to the Media Committee of the Freedom and Dignity Strike — a joint committee formed by the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) and Palestinian Committee for Prisoners’ Affairs, five more Palestinian prisoners in Israel’s Ofer prison joined the hunger strike on Friday.
[. . . .] ___The committee also added that representative of the prisoners in Ofer prison Akram Hamed said that the hunger strikers’ sections in the prison have been raided daily and subjected to “suppressing procedures,” noting that despite this and the continued deterioration of the healths of some of the hunger strikers, they were determined to continue until their demands are met.    ___Meanwhile, the the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East Gregory III Laham declared a solidarity hunger strike for Saturday in support of the prisoners.     MORE . . .

IMG_3057
Ofer Prison guard tower (Photo, November, 2015. Harold Knight)

. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ)   18TH  DAY  OF  HUNGER  STRIKE:  MORE  PRISONERS  JOIN  MASS  HUNGER  STRIKE
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association 
May 4, 2017
[. . . .] Over 1500 Palestinian political prisoners and detainees held in Israeli prisons and detention centers began an open hunger strike on 17 April 2017. The call for a hunger strike came as a result of Israeli’s policies and practices towards political prisoners. The hunger striking prisoners’ demands include: an end to the transfer of Palestinian prisoners from the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) into prisons in Israel; regular family visits; proper medical care; an end to Israel’s practice of detaining Palestinians without charge or trial in so-called administrative detentions; and stopping the use of solitary confinement.
___Punitive measures imposed on hunger strikers have included: the denial of family visits; denial of recreational time; denial of access to the “canteen” (prison store); prohibition from participating in group prayers on Fridays; seizure of salt during the first days of the strike; and. . .
___As a result of the hunger strike, Palestinian prisoners have been subjected to violent and coercive measures and policies by Israeli Prison Service and special units to push prisoners and detainees to end their hunger strikes. Addameer Prisoner Support & Human rights Association visited non-striking prisoners in Remon and Meggido prison on 4 May 2017.        MORE . . .

[. . . .] reflecting on the ethical dilemmas posed to the medical profession by the prisoners’ hunger-strike, Professor Avinoam Reches, chairperson of the Israeli Medical Association (IMA) Ethics’ Committee, called for a joint action of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), the Ministry of Health (MOH), the IMA and human rights’ organizations. He called on them to work together in order to formulate a treatment policy for hunger-strikers in Israeli prisons, thus avoiding putting all the pressure of difficult decisions on the individual physician. In arguing for his proposal, Reches depicted the main ethical dilemma for the physician as a choice between respecting the rights of his/her patient’s—the hunger striking prisoner—to autonomy, and the sanctity of life. ‘This is a collision between two basic ethical principles: the value of autonomy and the right of the individual to decide on his body, up to the point that he can commit suicide as an expression of his free will; and the value of the sanctity of life, which for its supporters weighs more than the desire to die by any means, including by hunger.’
___In posing the ethical dilemma facing physicians as the tension between the principle of individual autonomy and the sanctity of life, Reches adopts the same liberal perspective that inspires the Malta 2006 declaration, signed by Israel, which broadly placed the question of how physicians should act in cases of hunger-strikes in the context of the tensions between two fundamental bioethical principles: autonomy versus sanctity of life. The declaration gave clear priority to the former, thus disallowing the practice of forced-feeding (World Medical Association). While the tension between these two principles is undoubtedly one of the central dilemmas presented to health practitioners dealing with hunger-strikes, we argue that limiting the ethical question to this tension obstructs and limits the ethical discussion.    FULL ARTICLE . . .

  • Filc, Dani, et al. “Palestinian Prisoners’ Hunger-Strikes in Israeli Prisons: Beyond the Dual-Loyalty Dilemma in Medical Practice and Patient Care.” Public Health Ethics, vol. 7, no. 3, Nov. 2014, pp. 229-238.

SOLIDARITY  STRIKES  SPREADING  THROUGH  EUROPE  AFTER  MANCHESTER  AND  EDINBURGH  STUDENT  HUNGER  STRIKES  LAUNCHED 
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network   
May 3, 2017
Student groups at the University of Manchester in England and Edinburgh University in Scotland have launched solidarity hunger strikes in support of the Palestinian prisoners’ strike for freedom and dignity that have now extended for days of action in support of the prisoners’ struggle. Their campaign is now spreading across Europe, with activists in Madrid, Turin, Brussels, London and elsewhere joining growing solidarity strikes that highlight the prisoners’ demands and their urgent calls for support.
___After 1500 Palestinian prisoners launched their hunger strike on 17 April for a series of demands, including an end to the denial of family visits, the right to access distance higher education, appropriate medical care and an end to solitary confinement and administrative detention, imprisonment without charge or trial, protests across Palestine and around the world have demanded freedom for Palestinian prisoners and urged the immediate implementation of their demands. Now in their 17th day without food, strikers are facing harsh repression – including denial of legal visits, frequent transfers, and isolation of strike leaders – inside Israeli prisons.
___In Palestine, a number of solidarity hunger strikes and fasts have been organized to support the prisoners, including a large one-day strike in Gaza, a five-day strike by Lina Khattab and fellow Bir Zeit University students who are themselves former prisoners, and ongoing open-ended solidarity strikes in the protest tents in Qalqilya, Jenin, Nablus and elsewhere. A call has been issued from Palestine for a day-long solidarity strike by artists and other cultural workers on 3-4 May, linking with ongoing art actions by Decolonize this Place in support of the strikers.      MORE . . .
RELATED  ARTICLES
“European Hunger Strike Seeks to Strengthen Palestine Prisoners, Expose Israeli Apartheid.” TeleSUR English. May 5, 2017.    MORE . . . .
“Thousands rally to back Palestinian prisoners’ hunger strike.” ABCNews. By Mohammed Draghmeh, Associated Press. May 3, 2017.    MORE . . . .  
“A thousand Palestinian prisoners are on a hunger strike. This woman is fighting for their rights.” Washington Post. By Ruth Eglash. April 27, 2017.     MORE . . . .

“THE WAY,” by Fouzi El-Asmar

I shall not despair;
Whether my way leads to a jail,
under the sun
or in exile
I shall not despair.

It is my right to behold the sun
To demolish the tent and banishment
To eat the fruit of the olive
To water the vineyards
with music
To sing of Love
in Jaffa, in Haifa
To sow the fertile land
with new seeds
It is my right.

Let my way be
The reaching of one hand to another
That a tower of dreams be built.

This is my way
And if the last price to pay
is my sight
my life
I shall
but will not give up
my way.

El Asmar, Fouzi. POEMS FROM AN ISRAELI PRISON. Intro. By Israel Shahak. New York: KNOW Books, 1973.  Available from Amazon.
About Fouzi El Asmar.

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University of Manchester students demonstrate their solidarity with the Palestinian political prisoners (Photo: BDS Campaign – University of Manchester)

“. . . the internationally driven ‘statebuilding’ project . . . solely geared towards Israeli needs . . .” (Pogodda and Richmond)

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The streets in Al Fara’a Refugee Camp  (Photo: ahote’s_photolog, Flikr, Aug. 29, 2008)

❶ .  Israeli forces kill Palestinian man during predawn raid in al-Faraa
. . . ― (a) Israeli forces fire tear gas in elderly Palestinian woman’s home during night raid

  • Background: “Palestinian Unity and Everyday State Formation: Subaltern ‘Ungovernmentality’ Versus Elite Interests.” Third World Quarterly 

❷ . Ministry of Information: Occupation is the root of all evils
❸ . Israeli forces destroy water pipeline serving Bedouin villages in northern West Bank
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . ISRAELI  FORCES  KILL  PALESTINIAN  MAN  DURING  PREDAWN  RAID  IN  AL-FARAA 
Ma’an News Agency 
Jan. 10, 2017 ― A Palestinian man was shot and killed by Israeli forces during an overnight raid in the al-Faraa refugee camp  . . . Israeli and Palestinian sources reported, although they widely diverged over the circumstances of the man’s death.
___A member of the politburo of the Palestinian People’s Party (PPP), Khalid Mansour, told Ma’an that an Israeli intelligence officer “executed” Muhammad al-Salihi, 32, during a raid in his home.
___Al-Salihi and his mother were surprised when Israeli forces entered and ransacked their homes, Mansour said.
___”Muhammad started to shout at them because he thought they were thieves, and the soldiers immediately showered him with bullets at point-blank range, before the very eyes of his elderly mother,” Mansour recounted.
___According to the PPP official, medical sources at the Turkish hospital in Tubas said al-Salihi had been shot at least six times, including in the upper body.     More . . .

. . .
― (a) ISRAELI  FORCES  FIRE  TEAR  GAS  IN  ELDERLY  PALESTINIAN  WOMAN’S  HOME  DURING  NIGHT  RAID
Ma’an News Agency 
Jan. 10, 2017 ― Israeli forces injured an elderly Palestinian woman with during an overnight raid in the village of Kafr Qaddum in the occupied West Bank district of Qalqiliya, witnesses told Ma’an on Tuesday.
___Israeli soldiers broke into the home of Shafiqa Ahmad Abd al-Qadir Jumaa late on Monday night and fired tear gas inside her house, causing her to suffer from tear gas inhalation.
___The eyewitness sources added that Jumaa also sustained minor bruises during the raid.     More . . .

  • Pogodda, Sandra, and Oliver P. Richmond. “Palestinian Unity and Everyday State Formation: Subaltern ‘Ungovernmentality’ Versus Elite Interests.” Third World Quarterly 36.5 (2015): 890-907.    SOURCE.

Recent political developments give rise to cautious optimism about prospects for Palestinian statehood: In November 2012 an overwhelming majority of countries (138 out of 193) recognised Palestine’s demand for sovereignty by granting it non-member state status in the UN. While this move falls short of bestowing Palestine with the characteristics of genuine statehood, it demonstrates growing international support for Palestinian sovereignty. The unprecedented level of pro-Palestinian protests worldwide in 2014 (condemning Israel’s latest attack on the imprisoned population of Gaza that summer) suggests that international awareness of Israel’s human rights violations in Palestine is growing.
[. . . . ]  In the case of Palestine external intervention through direct, structural and governmental power has systematically prevented the formation of a state. Starting with the British Mandate for Palestine (and its abuse by implementing the Balfour Declaration14) and continuing to Israel’s military occupation and the internationally driven ‘statebuilding’ project, external forms of power have historically undermined local politics in the pursuit of security and geopolitical interests. Israel’s direct, structural and bio-power have fragmented the territorial, social and political unity needed for the formation of a Palestinian state. Internationally financed statebuilding efforts meanwhile remain within the liberal peace and subsequent neoliberal state framework: limited and focused on security and institution building, rather than on an emancipatory social contract and social justice. Even the liberal character of this enterprise is debatable, given that neither democratisation nor trade liberalisation has been pursued, while security measures are solely geared towards Israeli needs. In addition, the internationally sponsored Israeli–Palestinian peace process has tried to establish a governmentality that aimed to make the current ‘matrix of control’ acceptable as a step towards Palestinian sovereignty [. . . .]  

❷ . MINISTRY  OF  INFORMATION:  OCCUPATION  IS  THE  ROOT  OF  ALL  EVILS  
Palestine News Network – PNN
Jan. 10, 2017 ― The Ministry of Information on Tuesday said that it has followed “with much shock and little surprise” the Israeli orchestrated incitement against the Palestinians following yesterday’s truck incident in occupied Jerusalem.
___“Israel wasted no time in drumming up venomous incitement campaign attempting to connect our people with terror and ISIS for obvious reasons related to political gains,” statement said. “The haste of making committing incitement only indicated to the relentless Israeli racist mentality built on demonizing our people and just cause to whitewash the Israeli occupation that is facing a growing international isolation and condemnation.”
___The Ministry of Information further considered the statements mouthed by the Israeli PM Netanyahu and many of his government echelons as a continuation to turning a blind eye to the criminality of occupation as the root of all evils instead to attempt to distract the world with windmill battles.     More . . .

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Al-Ras al-Ahmar village near Tamun town, north of the Jordan Valley. (Photo: KhamakarPress, Nov. 11, 2016)

❸ . ISRAELI  FORCES  DESTROY  WATER  PIPELINE  SERVING  BEDOUIN  VILLAGES  IN  NORTHERN  WEST  BANK   
Ma’an News Agency
Jan. 10, 2017 ― Israeli forces destroyed a pipeline supplying water to four Bedouin communities in the northern Jordan Valley, a Palestinian official said on Tuesday morning.
___Muataz Bisharat, who monitors settlement-related activities in the Jordan Valley, told Ma’an that bulldozers under Israeli military protection destroyed part of an 11-kilometer water pipeline supplying the villages of al-Ras al-Ahmar, al-Hadidiya, Khirbet Makhul, and Khirbet Humsa.
___Bisharat added that the pipeline was funded by international NGO Action Against Hunger  four years ago.   More . . .

“. . . the Bible includes stories of violence and genocide, resembling recent history . . .” (Leonard Marsh)

church-nativity
Ancient mosaics on a wall of the Church of the Nativity uncovered during restoration works by Italian experts at the site, Jul. 19, 2016. (Thomas Coex/AFP)

❶ . Palestinians celebrate Christmas Eve in Bethlehem

  • Background:  “Whose Holy Land?” Studies In World Christianity

❷ . Bethlehem: Nativity church with new shine
❸ . Israel besieges Bethlehem villages in search of stabbing suspect
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . PALESTINIANS  CELEBRATE  CHRISTMAS  EVE  IN  BETHLEHEM  
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 24, 2016 – Palestinians marked the occasion of Christmas Eve on Saturday morning in the southern occupied West Bank town of Bethlehem, which is traditionally held as the birthplace of Jesus Christ.
___A parade lead by the Latin Patriarch of Palestine, Jordan, and the Holy Land Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, who is also the Apostolic Administrator of the Latin Patriarchate in Jerusalem, are set to arrive in Bethlehem in the afternoon and will be officially received at the Nativity Church in Bethlehem’s Manger Square.     Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah are also expected to arrive in Bethlehem later Saturday to partake in Midnight Mass.    More . . .

  • Marsh, Leonard. “Whose Holy Land?” Studies In World Christianity 15.3 (2009): 276-286.   SOURCE.

[. . . .] . . . [Naim Ateek, a Palestinian Anglican Theologian] sees the 1967 war as a crucial moment in the history of the Israeli state. The occupation . . . was, according to him, attributed by a large percentage of Israelis and many Western Christians as ‘God’s powerful intervention on the side of Israel and against the Arabs’. Ateek realises that the Bible itself can and has been used as an ideological tool in asserting a religious basis for Zionism, originally a secular movement. For Palestinians, the Bible arguably has been used in a way to support injustice and inequality.       ___Understood in a literal way, the Bible appears to Palestinians to justify their enslavement and undermine their hopes for a national homeland. When Christians recite the ‘Benedictus,’ including the words ‘Blessed be the God of Israel,’ Ateek asks what this means. Which Israel is being referred to? What redemption is being promised, and to whom? One problem facing Palestinian Christian Theology simply is a matter of how the Bible itself is to be understood by Palestinian Christians.      [. . . .]  Former Latin Patriarch Michel Sabbah . . .  noted we have to struggle in order to maintain and build peace with justice. Interpreting the Bible is a demanding task. Such interpretations concern our very national and personal identities as believers because unilateral, partial interpretations run the risk – for some – of bringing into question their presence and permanence in this land, which is their homeland. Questions to be addressed include, what is the relationship between the Old and New Testaments? The narrative of the Bible includes stories of violence and genocide, resembling recent history which may be attributed to God. How is this to be understood? What is the relationship between ancient Biblical history and contemporary history? Is Biblical Israel to be identified with the state of Israel? . . .  Does the Bible justify current political claims made on its behalf? Could we be victims of our own salvation history, which seems to favour the Jewish people and condemn others?        [. . . .] Mitri Raheb, pastor of the Bethlehem Christmas Lutheran Church . . .  has observed that until the middle of the nineteenth century, the Palestinian churches interpreted the Bible allegorically or typologically. This is no longer possible. The advent of Zionism has made the Old Testament a political text, and made the Bible problematic the moment the modern state of Israel was formed. He also has addressed the question of the Q’uran from an Arab Christian perspective. His intention is to have an understanding of Muslim scripture which would provide the basis for a Christian-Muslim relationship within contemporary Arab society [. . . .]

❷ . BETHLEHEM:  NATIVITY  CHURCH  WITH  NEW  SHINE 
Deutsche Welle 
Dec. 23, 2016 – Every year at Christmas time, people from around the world head for the West Bank city of Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity, where it is believed Jesus was born. This year the church shines more brightly than it has for centuries.
More (video) . . .           Related Video: Attacks cast shadow on Bethlehem Christmas    Background: The Restoration of the Church of Nativity

christmas-lutheran
Christmas Lutheran Church, Bethlehem (Photo: Harold Knight, 2008)

❸ .  ISRAEL  BESIEGES  BETHLEHEM  VILLAGES  IN  SEARCH  OF  STABBING  SUSPECT
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 24, 2016 – Israeli forces continued to crackdown on Palestinian villages in the southern occupied West Bank town of Bethlehem on Saturday, in search for a man who allegedly stabbed and lightly injured a settler in the illegal Israeli settlement of Efrat southwest of Bethlehem Friday night.     [. . . . ]   There was a heavy presence of Israeli soldiers in several areas across Bethlehem that continued into Saturday morning, with reports of clashes erupting between Palestinians and Israeli forces overnight Friday.       More . . .  

NATIVITY CHURCH MOSAICS
A worker from the Piacenti restoration center works on a mosaic in the Church of the Nativity. (Photo: Jul. 14, 2016 Catholic News Service)

“. . . Any hope of peace in the future will just vanish . . .” (Saeb Erekat, Palestinian negotiator)

kerry-erekat
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat shake hands, Jan. 4, 2014, in Ramallah. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

❶ . PLO will revoke Israel recognition if US moves embassy, top official warns

  • Background: “Jerusalem In The Courts And On The Ground.” Florida Journal Of International Law

❷ . ‘Israel replaces one land theft with another,’ NGO says
❸ .  Father of slain Palestinian teen objects to plea deal with Israeli officer
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . PLO  WILL  REVOKE  ISRAEL  RECOGNITION  IF  US  MOVES  EMBASSY,  TOP  OFFICIAL  WARNS   
The Times of Israel
Dec. 20, 2016 – If the incoming Trump administration moves the US embassy to Jerusalem, the PLO will revoke its recognition of Israel, the prospect of a two-state solution will be over, and any hope of Israeli-Palestinian peace in the future will vanish, the top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat warned on Monday.
___Speaking on a conference call organized by the Wilson Center . . .   Erekat reeled off a list of what he said would be the consequences of President-elect Donald Trump honoring his campaign pledge and relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
[. . . .]  Erekat noted that he held meetings last week in Washington with State Department officials, but failed to secure meetings he had sought with incoming Trump administration officials. “I don’t know any of them,” he said of Trump’s personnel.     More . . .

(Note: The following article is a detailed and documented history of the U.S. policy on the status of Jerusalem over the years. The sections quoted here present only a small part of the writing about the continually evolving realities “on the ground” of the status of Jerusalem.) 

  • Halabi, Sam F. “Jerusalem In The Courts And On The Ground.” Florida Journal Of International Law 26.2 (2014): 223-270.  (Sam F. Halabi is Associate Professor, University of Tulsa College of Law. J.D. Harvard, M.Phil. Oxford, B.A. Kansas State University.) FULL ARTICLE.

[. . . .] In 1967, Israel conquered all of Jerusalem and the West Bank, politically reunifying the city and obtaining control over the Temple Mount which it left under the stewardship of the Islamic waqf. It offered Israeli citizenship to Arabs living in Jerusalem in 1967, most of whom rejected the offer. They became so-called Jerusalem residents, neither citizens of Israel nor civilians subject to the same rules of occupation which applied to other Palestinian residents living in the West Bank.
___In 1980, Israel officially annexed East Jerusalem and the areas within the redrawn municipal boundary which included settlements built over the 1967 “Green Line.” The U.N. Security Council declared the “Jerusalem Law” null and void and a violation of international law. In 1993, Israel and the Palestinians agreed to settle the final status of Jerusalem and other matters by negotiation. U.S. Executive Branch policy from 1948 forward never recognized Israeli or Jordanian sovereignty over any part of Jerusalem. In 1949, when Israel announced its intention to convene its parliament’s first meeting in the part of Jerusalem it controlled, the United States refused to send a representative to attend, noting that the U.S. Government “cannot support any arrangement which would purport to authorize the establishment of Israeli . . . sovereignty over parts of the Jerusalem area.” The United States similarly opposed the Jordanian effort to declare East Jerusalem its “second” capital (after Amman) in 1950. The State Department established a formal diplomatic presence in Tel Aviv for relations with Israel and separate consular offices in Jerusalem. Arab and Jewish U.S. citizens born within Jerusalem’s 1948 municipal borders are designated as having been born in “Jerusalem” consistent with this non-recognition.
___Congress, however, became more active on the issue after the 1980 Jerusalem Law, both directly and indirectly seeking to have the city’s status as Israel’s capital formalized. Several U.S. Presidents, including Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and William Clinton, have stated that Jerusalem should remain united and its final status should be determined by negotiation, implying that Israelis and Palestinians might both establish recognized capitals there and further implying that U.S. policy disfavors separation of the type experienced between 1948 and 1967 [. . . .]

❷ . ‘ISRAEL  REPLACES  ONE  LAND  THEFT  WITH  ANOTHER,’  NGO  SAYS
Days of Palestine
Dec. 19, 2016 – Israeli settlers of the illegal settlement of Amona in occupied West Bank agreed to move to another private Palestinian land, an Israeli NGO said.
___The Israeli Jewish settlers of Amona, which the Israeli High Court decided it be evacuated by December 25, agreed to a deal offered by the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Education Minister Naftali Bennett.
___According to the new deal, adopted by the Israeli occupation government, the illegal Jewish settlers are going to move to another private Palestinian land on a hilltop nearby Amona.    
[. . . .]
Israeli rights group Peace Now said that the latest Israeli government compromise would see the relocation of 40 settler families to nearby land privately owned by Palestinians.
___“The Israeli government is replacing one land theft by another,” Peace Now said in a statement.      More . . .  

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Israeli flags flying over confiscated Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 2015)


❸ .  FATHER  OF  SLAIN  PALESTINIAN  TEEN  OBJECTS  TO  PLEA  DEAL  WITH  ISRAELI  OFFICER  

Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 20, 2016 – The father of a 17-year-old Palestinian who was shot dead . . .  in 2014 said he strongly objected to the plea deal being prepared for the Israeli border police officer who killed his son.
___Siyam Nuwarah told Ma’an Monday evening that he sent a letter to the Israeli Attorney General saying that his family was “extremely saddened” about the recently published reports regarding the Attorney General’s intent to sign a plea deal, in which the officer would receive a reduced sentence.
[. . . .]  Nadim Siyam Nuwarah was shot and killed with live ammunition in the chest during a protest rally marking the 66th anniversary of the Nakba on May 15, 2014. The incident was captured on video.     More . . .

 

“. . . “Our policy has been to attack civilians. The Palestinians must be hit and it must be very painful . . .” (Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, 2002)

gaza
Palestinian children play next the remains of their house on June 22, 2015 in Gaza City, destroyed during 50-day Israeli offensive in the summer of 2014 (AFP/Mahmud Hams, File)

❶ . UN makes $547 million appeal for humanitarian aid for Palestine
. . . ❶ ― (a) 257 Gaza families receive payments for reconstruction and repair works

  • Background: “Operation Cast Lead–Zion Fascism At Its Best.” South Asian Studies

❷ . Gaza electricity company accuses Israel of stalling power line repairs
❸ . The failed mass deportation of 1992
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
. UN  MAKES  $547  MILLION  APPEAL  FOR  HUMANITARIAN  AID  FOR  PALESTINE 
Ma’an News Agency    
Dec. 19, 2016 ― The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the Palestinian Authority (PA) announced on Monday a coordinated appeal to the international community for $547 million in humanitarian aid for the 2017.
___The more than half-a-billion dollar target sum would go toward the implementation of 243 projects undertaken by 95 organizations, including 47 national and 35 international NGOs, as well as 13 UN agencies, according to a joint press release from UNOCHA and the state of Palestine.
___Almost 70 percent of the $547 million in funds would be directed toward projects in the besieged Gaza Strip, where Palestinians “are facing their tenth year under a blockade that precludes any vestige of ‘normal life,’” UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities Robert Piper was quoted in the press release as saying.    More . . .
. . . ❶ ― (A) 257  GAZA  FAMILIES  RECEIVE  PAYMENTS  FOR  RECONSTRUCTION  AND  REPAIR  WORKS  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA      
Dec. 19, 2016 ― The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) has disbursed $1.8 million to 257 refugee families for the reconstruction and repair works activities in the Gaza Strip, an UNRWA press release said on Monday.     ___“Emergency shelter – including support for home repairs, reconstruction and interim shelter solutions – is a top priority for UNRWA,” stressed the release.
[. . . .] Tens of thousands of homes were destroyed or damaged during Israel’s 2014 war on Gaza.       More . . .  

  • Javaid, Umbreen, and Maliha Shamim. (University of Punjab, Lahore.) “Operation Cast Lead–Zion Fascism At Its Best.” South Asian Studies (1026-678X) 29.2 (2014): 691-700.  ARTICLE.  (Note: this article concerns the 2010 siege of Gaza, but it is obviously applicable to the 2014 siege as well). 

[. . . .] As religion is a necessary element of Israeli government and administration constituting the Israeli state, democracy is acceptable only as long as it operates within Zionist framework. Israel’s policy has always been to not only occupy Palestinian territories but to populate them with Jews. Many of the occupied territories were home to Jewish populations in the recent past hence populating the West Bank sites is not settlement but a return to their original land.
[. . . .]  Israel claimed the Gaza attacks as its right of self-defense but in fact Israel provided the provocation through her own violation. . .  Pro-Zionist western leaders and powers were united in their unflinching support to Israel. . . .  President Bush in a blatant show of uncritical support said, “Hamas’s continued rocket attacks into Israel must cease if the violence is to stop. Hamas must end its terrorist activities if it wishes to play a role in the future of the Palestinian people.”
[. . . .]  The bombardment on Gaza considered the bloodiest in all Israel’s history moved even Israel’s leading human rights organization B’Tselem which said that the Israel army was intentionally targeting what appeared to be clear civilian objects that are not engrossed in military action against Israel. . . .  Gideon Levy said, “once again Israel’s violent responses, even if there is justification for them, exceed all proportion and cross every red line of humanness, morally, international law and wisdom.”
[. . . .]  . . .  while claiming to act in self-defense Israel used all banned weaponry to incinerate people. “Our policy has been to attack civilians. The Palestinians must be hit and it must be very painful: we must cause them losses, victims, so they feel the heavy price,” said former Israeli Prime Minister and war criminal Ariel Sharon in 2002. The principle of Israeli army is: “if you continue killing Palestinian civilians for long enough, the world will accept it.”
[. . . .] The influence of religion on the political process is increasing day by day in modern Israel. Instead of prohibiting or simply interfering in religiously motivated activities the Israeli government actively supports and encourages them. . . .  Israel and its leaders do not want peace as it is not in their interests. A peaceful solution of Palestine problem would end the problem itself which is not acceptable to Israel. Israeli society today is the most extremist and racist with Israel treading on the path of ethnic cleansing and murder of Palestinians.

❷ . GAZA  ELECTRICITY  COMPANY  ACCUSES  ISRAEL  OF  STALLING  POWER  LINE  REPAIRS       
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 19, 2016 ― The Gaza Strip’s electricity company accused Israel on Sunday of pushing off repairs on the “Baghdad” power line which has been damaged for four days, worsening the already dire electricity situation in the besieged Palestinian territory.     ___Gaza’s power company called upon the Palestinian Authority to pressure Israel to respond to the Gaza Strip’s electricity needs and repair the damaged line as soon as possible.     ___The company added that the recurrent disrepair of many Israeli electricity lines worsened the power crisis in Gaza and severely impacted the electricity distribution schedule. More . . .

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Deported detainees in Marj al-Zuhour (Meadow of Flowers) tent city, Lebanon, 1992.(Photo: Islamic Resistance Movement, http://hamas.ps/en/post/487)

❸ . THE  FAILED  MASS  DEPORTATION  OF  1992         
Gaza.Scoop.ps – Real Time News From Gaza
Dec. 18, 2016 ― On the 17th of December 1992, under the cover of darkness, the Israeli occupation forces raided the houses of hundreds of Palestinian leaders and activists from the occupied West Bank and Gaza. Academics, doctors and social figures were among 415 Palestinians whom the Israelis kidnapped, handcuffed, blindfolded and placed in trucks and buses that headed to a destination unknown to them or their families.
___The raids, which mainly targeted members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, followed failed Israeli attempts to rescue Nissim Toledano, an Israeli Sergeant who was captured earlier by al-Qassam Brigades in a bid to release Hamas leader and founder Shiekh Ahmed Yassin.     ___Contrary to the expectations of the detainees, the 60-hour-long trip did not end up at one of Israel’s notorious prisons. They were instead being exiled to south Lebanon in an unprecedented mass deportation that was executed without a hearing or even prior notification.      More . . .

“. . . to locate Palestinians within multiple spaces of dispossession and oppression, imprisonment and separation continually remade . . .” (Annie Pfingst)

bilin
Israeli forces disperse weekly march against Israeli occupation in Bilin, Nov. 25, 2016 (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)

❶ . Funerals held for slain Palestinians draw large crowds, spark clashes in Beit Ummar

  • Background: “Militarised Violence In The Service Of State-Imposed Emergencies Over Palestine And Kenya.” Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal

❷ . Israeli forces shoot tear gas, rubber bullets at protesters in Kafr Qaddum
❸ . Israeli forces suppress weekly Bilin march, dozens suffer tear gas inhalation
❹ . Opinion/Analysis:  Legacies of State Violence and Black-Palestinian Solidarity
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . FUNERALS  HELD  FOR  SLAIN  PALESTINIANS  DRAW  LARGE  CROWDS,  SPARK  CLASHES  IN  BEIT  UMMAR     
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 17, 2016       After Israel returned on Friday the bodies of seven Palestinians that were killed by Israeli forces in recent months, funerals held in their hometowns across the occupied West Bank drew large crowds, with clashes erupting in Beit Ummar during the Saturday morning funeral for 15-year-year old Khalid Bahr.
[. . . .]  Israeli forces killed the 15-year-old boy on Oct. 20 in the village, when Israeli authorities claimed a soldier shot Khalid for throwing rocks at Israeli forces. An internal Israeli army investigation later revealed that the lives of Israeli soldiers were not at risk when Khalid was killed.
___Following Khalid’s funeral, clashes erupted between Palestinian youth and Israeli forces at the entrance of Beit Ummar.     More . . .  

  • Pfingst, Annie. “Militarised Violence In The Service Of State-Imposed Emergencies Over Palestine And Kenya.” Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 6.3 (2014): 6-37.   ARTICLE.

[. . . .] Legal provisions based on racial separation/segregation . . .   continue to be applied by Israel over Palestine. Having detained and deported Arabs during the Arab uprising of the 1930s . . . .  on the 21st May 1948, [Israel] declared a state of emergency over Palestine, only days after the declaration of the establishment of the Israeli state on the lands, villages and cities lost to Palestinians through the war of 1948, al Nakba. The state of emergency – promulgated for the defence of the state, the maintenance of public order, supplies and essential services, and the suppression of mutiny, rebellion, or riot – has been renewed in the Israeli Knesset every year since 1948. In 2012 the Supreme Court [ruled that] that (Israel) ‘is not a normal country in that its existential threats have yet to be quelled.’
[. . . .]  The . . .  practices enabled through Emergency regulations are intensified forms of instrumentalised colonial governmentality and violence, part of the structure of settler colonialism – of settlement, dispossession, repression, expulsion and containment . . .  unquestioned by either the colonial administration or the settlement project. The state of emergency as an oppressive regime is characterised by surveillance, arrest and detention, screening, secret evidence and torture, and the workings of secret services and militarised violence – characteristics evident in Israeli daily practices over Palestine . . .
[. . . .]  The British Mandate over Palestine introduced land mapping, registration and appropriation; laws on citizenship and collective and individual rights; mapped state borders and movement; and constructed settlement practices and militarized landscapes of control. The assemblage of Israel over Palestine is always in flux, continuing to locate Palestinians within multiple spaces of dispossession and oppression, imprisonment and separation continually remade, constantly assembling spatial arrangements across fluid zones of militarized control. Spatial disintegration and fragmentation . . .   assemble landscapes of emergency and re-assemble multiple geographies of resistance. Every location becomes the site for the confrontation between the agency of resistance and the agents of sovereign power and control [. . . .]

❷ . ISRAELI  FORCES  SHOOT  TEAR  GAS,  RUBBER  BULLETS  AT  PROTESTERS  IN  KAFR  QADDUM
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 16, 2016       Israeli forces Friday suppressed a weekly march in the village of Kafr Qaddum in the occupied West Bank district of Qalqiliya, shooting rubber-coated steel bullets and tear gas canisters at tens of Palestinians, internationals, and Israeli peace activists.
___Popular resistance coordinator Murad Shteiwi told Ma’an that Israeli forces attacked the protesters and fired tear gas canisters and rubber-coated steel bullets at the crowd, causing many to suffer tear gas inhalation.
___Shteiwi added that the protest was launched with wide participation of the village’s local residents and internationals, despite the cold weather and rain on Friday.  More . . .

kafr-qaddum-demo
People of Kafr Qaddum gathering for the weekly demonstration. Jun. 29, 2012. (Photo: T. Mayr)

❸ . ISRAELI  FORCES  SUPPRESS  WEEKLY  BILIN  MARCH,  DOZENS  SUFFER  TEAR  GAS  INHALATION 
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 16, 2016       Israeli forces Friday suppressed a weekly march in the village of Bilin in the central occupied West Bank district of Ramallah, as dozens of demonstrators suffered tear gas inhalation and Israeli forces briefly held an Australian solidarity protester.      ___The march, which was organized by the popular committee against the separation wall, set off after Friday prayers, as protesters marched through the village, chanting slogans calling for Palestinians to support Jerusalem, urged for the immediate release of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners Anas Shadid and Ahmad Abu Farah, and the withdrawal of Israeli settlers from the illegal Amona settler outpost.       More . . .           Related . . .

Opinion/Analysis:  LEGACIES  OF  STATE  VIOLENCE  AND  BLACK-PALESTINIAN  SOLIDARITY   
The Jerusalem Fund. 
Jada Bullen and Marie Helmy
Dec. 16, 2016   In the wake of Trump’s victory, the world waits with trepidation for what 2017 will bring to U.S. domestic and foreign policy. The future is uncertain for Palestinians and Black Americans, whose parallel struggles have become increasingly highlighted in the last few years.
___Four weeks into Israel’s attacks on Gaza in 2014, protesters in Ferguson held signs claiming solidarity with Palestine. In turn, Palestinians took to Twitter to advise Ferguson protesters on how to deal with tear gas, underscoring the similarities in their struggles. This past August, the Movement 4 Black Lives published a platform stance that calls for the U.S. to cut military expenditures in Israel and explicitly demands divestment from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation. Such acts of solidarity have made vital inroads. But now with Trump at the helm, we have yet to see how this will deter the progress we have collectively made in altering the discourse.        More . . .