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

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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 . . .

“. . . nonviolence is a mix of the pragmatic and principled, tragic, and comic styles . . .” (Matthew Eddy)

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Protesters in Bil’in, the West Bank, mark Palestinian Prisoners Day, Friday April 17, 2015. (Photo: Allison Deger, Mondoweiss)

❶ Israeli forces detain Palestinian, Israeli activist during Bilin protest

  • Background: “‘We Have To Bring Something Different To This Place’: Principled And Pragmatic Nonviolence Among Accompaniment Workers.” Social Movement Studies.

❷ Israeli forces raid home of slain Palestinian, clash with youth in Beit Ummar
❸ Take Action: Demand release of detained Palestinian human rights defender and BDS leader Salah Khawaja
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ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  PALESTINIAN,  ISRAELI  ACTIVIST  DURING  BILIN  PROTEST   
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 4, 2016
Israeli forces detained a Palestinian and an Israeli activist during the weekly protests in the Ramallah-area village of Bilin in the central occupied West Bank on Friday.   ___Protesters marched in condemnation of the 99th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration — the first ever explicit commitment made by Britain, and the West in general, to establish a Jewish homeland in historic Palestine.
___Israeli forces detained Ahmad Abu Rahmeh, a member of the popular committee in the town, and Israeli activist Mikha Rachman.
[. . . .] Bilin is one of the most active Palestinian villages in peaceful organized opposition against Israeli policies, as residents have protested every Friday for 11 consecutive years, and have often been met with tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets, and stun grenades from Israeli forces.        More . . .      

  • Eddy, Matthew P. “‘We Have To Bring Something Different To This Place’: Principled And Pragmatic Nonviolence Among Accompaniment Workers.” Social Movement Studies 13.4 (2014): 443-464.  Full article.

[. . . . ] As an ISM [International Solidarity Movement] volunteer in the summer of 2006, I joined the weekly protest in Bilin, a village in the Israeli-occupied territory of the West Bank, Palestine. Most of Bilin’s protests follow a theme chosen by Bilin’s Popular Committee Against the Wall and Settlements. At times, Bilin activists have carried large pictures of Gandhi, Rosa Parks, and King, conferring a ‘universal character upon their struggle over the barrier.’
[. . . .]    Arriving at the wall, we were confronted by about 25 Israeli Border Police and Israeli Defense Force (IDF) soldiers. Village elders asked for permission to pass through the gate . . . . The commander stood above us on the hood of a jeep, surveying the protest. He quickly denied the request. Drumming, traditional Palestinian chants, and hand clapping ensued, as the bridal party engaged in circle dances. ___Suddenly, four Palestinian boys under the age of 12 years, standing far to the side, began throwing stones at the soldiers from a distance of about 30 yards. One of the stones struck the commander in the face. Immediately, the commander issued an order and his soldiers began firing rubber bullets, concussion grenades, and tear gas into the throng of nonviolent protesters, while ignoring the boys now running away.
[. . . .]   [One of ISM’s Palestinian leaders] Mansour admitted, ‘That boy will be a hero in the village tonight.’ Mansour’s commitment to pragmatic nonviolence (confirmed in interviews), rather than the principled nonviolence of a Gandhi and King who invoked love for the enemy, is illustrated by the ambiguity in his final comment at the debriefing:

“We don’t like throwing stones, but somehow, we are happy that this commander
gets hit. Since he was humiliating us, was insulting us, was trying to disrupt the
demonstration by any means. This commander has been with us for at least three
months and – his craziness or his madness about the power and authority he has
enforcing his orders! He was showing his power, that he was the man of the
situation here.”

[. . . .]   Such is the complexity of stone throwing and nonviolence in a place like Bilin, suggesting that the performance of nonviolence is a mix of the pragmatic and principled, tragic, and comic styles.
[. . . .]   A few thousand pragmatic nonviolent adherents from a handful of Western nations – primarily young ISMers – have been virtually the only members of the international community willing to risk engaging in accompaniment in this context. They deserve to be commended for their courage and their solidarity activism, which by even the strictest measures, has been relatively nonviolent. Of course, the courage and creativity of Palestinian nonviolent activists in places like Bilin is even more worthy of recognition and analysis.

bilin
A demonstrator waves a Palestinian flag during the weekly protest against the wall  in the West Bank village of Bil’in, January 4, 2012. (Photo: Hamde Abu Rahma/ Activestills.org)

ISRAELI  FORCES  RAID  HOME  OF  SLAIN  PALESTINIAN,  CLASH  WITH  YOUTH  IN  BEIT  UMMAR   
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 5, 2016
Israeli forces clashed with Palestinian youth during a predawn raid in the village of Beit Ummar in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron.
___Local activist Muhammad Awad told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the family home of Khalid Ahmad Elayyan Ikhlayyil, 23, who was killed by Israeli forces on Sunday after he allegedly attempted to commit a car-ramming attack near the village.
___Soldiers searched Ikhlayyil’s home and questioned his father before leaving.   ___Awad highlighted that Ikhlayyil’s body remained in Israeli custody in accordance with the Israeli government’s practice of holding the bodies of slain Palestinians accused of committing attacks against Israelis.
[. . . . ]   According to Awad, clashes broke out between local youth and Israeli soldiers after the soldiers removed and stepped on a memorial poster of Ikhlayyil.   More . . .

TAKE  ACTION:  DEMAND  RELEASE  OF  DETAINED  PALESTINIAN  HUMAN  RIGHTS  DEFENDER  AND  BDS  LEADER  SALAH  KHAWAJA  #FreeSalahalestinian    
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network      
Nov. 5, 2016
Human rights defender and Secretary of the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee Salah Khawaja remains imprisoned and denied access to a lawyer at the Petah Tikva interrogation center.
___Khawaja, 46, a leading member of the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign (Stop the Wall) and BDS leader, has been detained under interrogation since 26 October, when he was seized in a violent pre-dawn military raid on his home. As occupation forces raided his home, they sprayed tear gas in the area entering many neighborhood homes in an attempt to quell protests against the seizure of this popular activist. The Palestinian BDS National Committee, of which Khawaja serves as secretary, is the broadest Palestinian civil society coalition that works to lead and support the BDS movement, the growing international movement for the boycott of Israel.      More . . .   

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International Solidarity Movement activists, Bilin, April 2, 2016 (Photo: ISM)

“. . . to expose the international community to their predicament . . .” (Galit Eilat)

 

bi-lin
Bilin weekly protest, April 10, 2015 (Photo: Ma’an New Agency)

❶ Israeli forces suppress weekly Bilin protest, residents march in solidarity with hunger-strikers
❷ Israeli forces injure Palestinian with live fire during protests in the Gaza Strip
❸ Israeli Forces Storm Bethlehem Zakat Committee Premises, Seize Belongings
❹ Opinion/Analysis:  “Where Do You Draw The Line?” South Atlantic Quarterly
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❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  SUPPRESS  WEEKLY  BILIN  PROTEST,  RESIDENTS  MARCH  IN  SOLIDARITY  WITH  HUNGER-STRIKERS
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 12, 2016
Israeli forces reportedly “suppressed” the weekly protests in the Ramallah-area village of Bilin on Friday.
___Friday’s march was held in solidarity with Palestinian hunger-striker Bilal Kayid, where protesters chanted slogans of support and called for Kayid’s immediate release.
___Kayid, who entered the 60th day of his hunger strike on Friday, is a prominent member of the PFLP. After being sentenced to six months of administrative detention — an Israeli policy of internment without charge or trial — on the day he was expected to be released from a 14-year prison sentence, he declared an open hunger strike.     MORE . . .

❷ ISRAELI  FORCES  INJURE  PALESTINIAN  WITH  LIVE  FIRE  DURING  PROTESTS  IN  THE  GAZA  STRIP
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 13, 2016
Israeli forces Friday injured a Palestinian with live fire in the eastern part of al-Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip during clashes with Israeli forces deployed near the border between the besieged enclave and Israel.
___Spokesperson of the Ministry of Health Ashraf al-Qidra told Ma’an that a 23-year-old sustained light injuries in the leg as Israeli snipers opened live fire at several Palestinians as protests erupted in the refugee camp.
___Meanwhile, protests were also reported in the eastern part of Gaza City, where witnesses told Ma’an Israeli snipers hid behind large dirt mounds as they shot live fire and tear gas bombs at the protestors.
___An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that protesters “approached the buffer zone” after which Israeli forces “fired warning shots,” causing the protesters to retreat. The spokesperson made no comment on the reported injury.        MORE . . .  

❸ ISRAELI  FORCES  STORM  BETHLEHEM  ZAKAT  COMMITTEE  PREMISES,  SEIZE  BELONGINGS
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
August 13, 2016
Israeli forces Saturday stormed and wreaked havoc into the Zakat committee’s premises during an overnight raid into the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem, said a Zakat Committee official.
___Chairman of the Bethlehem Zakat Committee Muhammad Rezeq said a large Israeli military force stormed the zakat committee’s premises in the central Bethlehem neighborhood of al-Karkafeh, destroying doors and ransacking it.
___Troops reportedly seized six computers, orphans’ files and cheque books. MORE . . .   

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Pro-Palestine supporters in Sao Paulo, Brazil, march carrying a Palestine flag during a demonstration against Operation Cast Lead in 2009 (Photo: AFP)

❹ Opinion/Analysis:  EILAT,  GALIT.  “WHERE  DO  YOU  DRAW  THE  LINE?”  SOUTH  ATLANTIC  QUARTERLY  114.3 (2015): 680-686.

Galit Eilat is Founding Director of “DAL – The Israeli Center for Digital Art”; Editor-in-Chief of Maarav, an online art and culture magazine; lecturer in the Department of Photography, Video & Computer Imaging at the “Bezalel Academy of Art and Design” in Jerusalem; Advisor for the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.  Her projects deal with the topics of the political situation in the Middle East, activism and the political potential of art.

Present-day Israel is not a democratic state. During the past five years, we have witnessed increasing nationalism, the silencing of political minorities, the media, and civic organizations, and the approval of antidemocratic laws. What started in 1967 as the sin of occupying Palestinian lands continues today as a crime against the occupied population. What actions will awaken Israelis from their indifference and make them fight for their right to live in a democratic state? Why are no sanctions imposed on Israel, while more and more sanctions are imposed on Gaza, while Israel enjoys international support and is one of the leading countries calling for boycotts of other states and organizations? . . .  Israeli propaganda tends to define any struggle against government policy as a type of terror: diplomatic terror, economic terror, cyber terror, legal terror. In doing so, it deems any form of struggle against the occupation as violent and illegitimate. The Palestinian choice of a strategy of boycott and diplomatic-economic sanctions, however, is based on tactics of nonviolent struggle that are considered legitimate and effective around the world. Vis-à-vis the mighty propaganda machine implemented by Israel, the Palestinians have opted for a tool intended to expose the international community to their predicament and to enable anyone anywhere in the world to express active support for their cause.

[. . . .]

___The question is often asked in Israel: “Why are there no Palestinians who oppose violence?” or “When will a Palestinian leader emerge who will pursue a nonviolent struggle against the Israeli occupation?” Yet, here we have a group of Palestinian activists who choose precisely that—to promote an economic-cultural boycott over armed combat—but Israeli propaganda has dubbed the Palestinian consumer boycott of products from the settlements an “act of hostility.” The double standards of Israeli propaganda are underlined by the Israeli government’s advocacy of a boycott against Hamas in Gaza, against the regime in Iran, and against products made in Sweden—after Sweden officially recognized the Palestinian state.

[. . . .]

It has also been suggested that the boycott often backfires by reinforcing the claim that Israel is still struggling for its existence and that Jews are still being persecuted. One cannot accept such a stance because it forecloses the possibility of criticism of Israel, in general, and Jews, in particular. Above all, it disregards the fact that Israel is also the Palestinians’ homeland.     SOURCE

 

 

“. . . But it became a black city . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

Bethlehem blockade
Road closure, Bethlehem, May 11, 2016 (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)

❶ 2 Palestinians killed, 44 injured over the past week
❷ Israeli forces close entrances to Bethlehem-area towns after shooting near Israeli settlement

  • background from International Journal Of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies

❸ Israeli forces detain 4, including Oscar-nominated filmmaker and journalist, in Bilin protest
❹ BLOG: Reflections From Palestine
❺ POETRY by Samih al-Qasim
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❶ 2  PALESTINIANS  KILLED,  44  INJURED  OVER  THE  PAST  WEEK
The Palestinian Information Center
July 22, 2016
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a new report issued Friday that two Palestinians were killed by Israeli gunfire over the past week while 44 others were injured including 13 children. . . .  from different parts of occupied Palestinian territories.
[. . . . ] 22 Palestinian-owned houses were either demolished or closed since the beginning of the year as part of Israeli punitive measures, leaving 110 persons homeless. Israeli authorities also demolished 23 homes for being allegedly built without permit in Israeli-controlled Area C, displacing 43 persons including 25 children.     MORE . . .

❷ ISRAELI  FORCES  CLOSE  ENTRANCES  TO  BETHLEHEM-AREA  TOWNS  AFTER  SHOOTING  NEAR  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENT
Ma’an News Agency
July 22, 2016
Israeli forces Friday closed several entrances to villages and towns in the eastern and southeastern parts of the occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem with large cement blocks, according to a Ma’an reporter, following a shooting on an Israeli settler’s car Thursday night.
___Israeli forces set up several checkpoints in the surrounding villages and towns in the district, including one at the entrance of the town of Beit Sahour and the entrances to villages in the eastern countryside of Bethlehem, causing heavy traffic, according to the local Ma’an reporter.
Israeli forces also closed the entrance to the town of Janata, two roads leading to the town of Zaatara, and the villages of al-Khas and Marah Rabah in southeastern Bethlehem.  MORE . . .   

From International Journal Of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies
The essence of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict has never been religious. The conflict is not between Muslims and Jews, as some tend to believe. It is not even a dispute over a territory. It is a protest against a post-modern colonialist project of creating an exclusive national entity for the Jewish people by eliminating and replacing the existence of Palestine. Many Israelis do not share this perception and believe that they need to have their national home and to build a Jewish and democratic state as a response to a long history of persecution and oppression particularly in Europe.
[. . . .]
The lack of visionary Israeli leadership, the destructive and racist policy of the current Netanyahu government and the lack of Palestinian national unity, resulting from the wide split between the PNA led by Fatah and Hamas, all these factors make the situation more gloomy. While Israelis are not ready yet voluntarily to relinquish supremacy, control and domination, Palestinians are determined not to give up on their legitimate rights for a decent and dignified life and for an independent and viable Palestinian state after a century of suffering and pain. Israelis as a collective national entity, for their own sake as well, must confront the wisdom of their pathological and lengthy use of dissociation and denial as effective defense mechanisms to cover up their unconscious guilt and shame and to prevent them from taking responsibility for the suffering of Palestinians, mostly endured by them.

  • JARRAR, ADIB. “Palestinian Suffering: Some Personal, Historical, And Psychoanalytic Reflections.” International Journal Of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies 7.3 (2010): 197-208.       SOURCE   

❸ ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  4,  INCLUDING  OSCAR-NOMINATED  FILMMAKER  AND  JOURNALIST,  IN  BILIN  PROTEST
Ma’an News Agency
July 22, 2016
Israeli forces detained four people, including a journalist and Oscar-nominated filmmaker, as soldiers dispersed weekly protests in the village of Bilin in the Ramallah district of the occupied West Bank on Friday.
___Israeli forces detained Iranian television reporter Khalid Sabarnah, the head of the local council Basil Mansur, activist Ashraf Abu Rahma, and filmmaker Emad Burnat, the Oscar-nominated director of the documentary film “5 Broken Cameras”, a film showing Burnat’s first-hand account of the protests in Bilin that began 11 years ago in response to the illegal expansion of nearby Israeli settlements, and the construction of Israel’s separation wall which separates Bilin residents from their privately owned lands.  MORE . . .

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Dozens of soldiers attacked, Friday, July 22, 2016, the weekly nonviolent protest in Bil’in village (Photo: IMEMC)

REFLECTIONS  FROM  PALESTINE,  BY  SAMIA  KHOURY  

“STORY OF A CITY,” BY SAMIH AL-QASIM

There was a blue city
that dreamt of foreigners wandering
around and spending their money
day after day.

But it became a black city
despising strangers
with their rifles’ muzzles
making the rounds of its cafés . . . .

From Al-Qasim, Samih. SADDER  THAN  WATER.  NEW  AND  SELECTED  POEMS.  Trans. Nazih Kasis and Adina Hoffman. Jerusalem: Ibis Editions, 2008.    Available from Amazon
Samih Al-Qasim. Obituary, August 20, 2014

“. . . Can defiled cities be the outcome . . .” (Harun Hashim Rasheed)

PLEASE NOTE: The content of this blog is changed: it presents fewer news items and gives more background for those items in hope of providing deeper understanding of the issues shaping the news. All articles without direct links can be found through a search in any library with EBSCO online databases. See FINDING  SCHOLARLY  ARTICLES  above.

Protest against the wall, Bilin, West Bank, 28,2,2014
A Palestinian youth places a flag on the Israeli wall during a protest marking nine years of struggle against the wall in the West Bank village of Bil’in, February 28, 2014. (Photo: Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

❶ Israeli forces avoid crowd dispersal weapons in Bilin protest for first time in 11 years
❷ Israel Delivers Demolition Notices for Palestinian Houses in Jerusalem Town
❸ Opinion/Analysis: THE  PALESTINIANS  IMPRISONED  BY  ISRAEL  FOR  THEIR  FACEBOOK  POSTS
❹ POETRY by Harun Hashim Rasheed
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ISRAELI  FORCES  AVOID  CROWD  DISPERSAL  WEAPONS  IN  BILIN  PROTEST  FOR  FIRST  TIME  IN  11  YEARS
Ma’an News Agency
May 27, 2016
For the first time in the 11-year history of weekly popular resistance demonstrations in the central occupied West Bank village of Bilin, Israeli forces did not use tear gas and other crowd control weapons to disperse protesters [. . . .]
___Protesters raised Palestinian flags and marched in the streets chanting songs of unity and resistance [. . . .]
___Bilin has long been one of the most active villages in organized opposition against Israeli policies, this year marking the eleventh consecutive year of weekly marches against expanding nearby settlements and the separation wall which separates residents from their private land.      MORE . . .

Snaking its way through the West Bank, weaving an intricate path that encircles, isolates and sometimes divides Palestinian cities and villages, the Israeli ‘separation’ wall stands as a stark symbol of both the occupation and overall Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The ‘wall’ is in fact a hybrid system of control, made up of a complex mix of electronic fences, dirt paths, barbed wire, radar, cameras, trenches, checkpoints and 8-metre tall concrete blocks, with almost 70 per cent of its path completed since construction began  in 2002. As one of the most prominent and contested instances of such a structure built in the last decade, the Israeli wall is particularly unique in a global scene increasingly captivated by the fortification of borders and the building of barriers, in the sense that the line it traces is disputed and not internationally recognized [. . . .]
___Perhaps the most apparent among these factors is that the wall by no means represents a simple division of territory: it does not run along the 1967 borders (the 1949 Armistice line) that are internationally agreed upon as the basis for future peace settlement, and in fact . . . only 15 per cent of the wall sits on the 1967 borders, with the remaining 85 per cent cutting at times 18 kilometres deep into the West Bank . . . .  Not only are some 80 Israeli settlements located behind it (with an overall population of approximately 75,000), but the wall also separates Palestinian from Palestinian – cutting off neighbouring villages from each other and sometimes dividing them in two. This is most evident in Jerusalem.

  • Busbridge, Rachel. “Performing Colonial Sovereignty and the Israeli ‘Separation’ Wall.” SOCIAL  IDENTITIES  19.5 (2013): 653-669.   SOURCE.

❷ ISRAEL  DELIVERS  DEMOLITION  NOTICES  FOR  PALESTINIAN  HOUSES  IN  JERUSALEM  TOWN
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
May 28, 2016
Israeli police Saturday delivered demolition notices for at least two Palestinian houses in Silwan town, south of Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City, said WAFA correspondent.
___Israeli police along with staff from the so-called Jerusalem Municipality raided the Silwan neighborhood of Ein al-Louza, where they handed notices to demolish the houses . . . .
___Israel has systematically targeted Palestinian residential structures in Silwan with demolition orders.      MORE . . .

Israel ‘s policy―one may even say obsession―of systematically demolishing Palestinian homes, urban neighborhoods and entire towns and villages goes back to 1948 and continues with a vengeance up to this moment, both within Israel and in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). The motivation is obvious: it is merely one expression of the twin processes of ethnic cleansing and Judaization, both of those, in tum, being consequences of defining Israel as a “Jewish state” and taking the steps necessary to make it so. The house demolition policy represents the essence of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: denying the Palestinian people the right to remain in the Land of Israel, either as a national collective or as individuals, and their displacement by Jews. [. . . .]
___The “neighborhoods” built in East Jerusalem serve to isolate Palestinian populations in small and disconnected enclaves, and to prevent the development and expansion of the Palestinian side of the city. Together with a new system of Israeli “ring roads” and the creation of a “Greater Jerusalem” enveloped by a wall, Jerusalem is being transformed from a city into a region dominating the entire central portion of the West Bank.

  • Halper, Jeff. “The Policy Of House Demolitions In East Jerusalem: What It Is, How It Is Done And To What End.” PALESTINE-ISRAEL  JOURNAL  OF  POLITICS,  ECONOMICS  &  CULTURE 17.1/2 (2011): 74-82.  SOURCE. 
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Israeli soldiers stop and search a young Palestinian man walking near the Damascus gate. They forced him to “raise your arms” to pat him down. A member of a Sabeel Witness delegation crossed the street to investigate and was blocked. (Photo: Harold Knight, November 13, 2015)

❸ Opinion/Analysis: THE  PALESTINIANS  IMPRISONED  BY  ISRAEL  FOR  THEIR  FACEBOOK  POSTS
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
Asa Winstanley
May 28, 2016
The propaganda goes that Israel is the “only democracy in the Middle East”. But for anyone familiar with the realities that Israel imposes on the Palestinians and on its neighbours, this has always been a cruel joke.
___The West Bank, occupied in violation of international law by Israel since 1967, is for Palestinians a military dictatorship imposed by Israel. The 600,000 or so (estimates vary) violent Israeli colonists that live in the West Bank settlements are the direct beneficiaries of this dictatorship.      MORE . . .

There is a natural inclination among political scientists and politicians involved in peacemaking to look at the past and memory as obstacles to progress. They recommend liberating oneself from the past as a prerequisite for peace. This view is entrenched in a wider context of reconciliation and mediation policies that emerged in the United States after the Second World War. This school of thought was based on a businesslike approach that treats the past as an irrelevant feature in the making of peace.
___[. . . .] Noam Chomsky, noting such a tendency in the Middle East peace process, concludes that the result was a never-ending “peace process” which was not meant to bring peace, but rather provides jobs and preoccupations for a large group of people belonging to the peace industry.
___This philosophy has informed the peace process in Palestine ever since 1948 and in particular after 1967. It has destroyed the chances of peace in Israel and Palestine; only the re-introduction of the historical dimension can save the peace effort. The starting point that has been totally neglected . . . is the year 1948.

  • Pappe, Ilan. “Historiophobia or the Enslavement of History: The Role of the 1948 Ethnic Cleansing in the Contemporary Peace Process.” ARAB  STUDIES  QUARTERLY 38.1 (2016): 402-417.  SOURCE.

(Note: The poetic image below is of the speaker being forced against a wall, either for search by soldiers or for execution. It is, however, an uncanny [prophetic?] description of the “separation” wall, construction of which did not begin until exactly ten years after this poem was published.)

“RAISE  YOUR  ARMS,”  BY  HARUN  HASHIM  RASHEED

―Raise your arms . . . .
they aimed their guns at me . . . .
―Raise your arms . . . .

I stood, my eye flaming
and scorching with anger
as an insistent film of events
assailed me.
Can defiled cities be
the outcome of our struggle?
Have years of suffering,
long days of vigilance
in trenches, on hills
and in tattered tents
led to this?

The world blackened in my eyes
my hand on the wall
as guns were pointing at me
I wished the wall would fall on my head
My comrades and I waited
for their bullets
for their bullets

They walked away, and the wall
remained, gazing back at us
waiting for a fiery volcano, for the flames.
―translated by Sharif Elmusa and Naomi Shihab Nye

Harun Hashim Rasheed (b. 1927)
Born in Gaza, poet Harun Hashim Rasheed witnessed, as a child, British soldiers demolishing his and his neighbors’ home in reprisal against Palestinian rebels, an incident which left a deep mark on him as a poet. After obtaining a Higher Teacher Training Diploma from Gaza College, he worked as a teacher until 1954. He then became director of the Sawt Al-Arab broadcasting station in Gaza. After the fall of Gaza to the Israelis in 1967, he was harassed by the Israeli occupation forces and was eventually compelled to leave. He has had a long and illustrious career as a Palestinian poet and literary figure in exile.

From: ANTHOLOGY OF MODERN PALESTINIAN LITERATURE. Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

“Despite the contradicting photographs pundits and lobbyists concurred. . .” (Samuel Hazo)

Tear Gas and Flowers
Tear Gas and Flowers

❶ from +972
PHOTOS: ANSWERING TEAR GAS WITH FLOWERS
Photos and text by Oren Ziv / Activestills.org
April 14, 2015
Every Friday residents of the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, along with Palestinian, Israeli and international activists, attempt to march to the village’s spring. The small spring was taken over by Israeli settlers from the nearby settlement of Halamish years ago, and the Israeli army now prevents Palestinians from reaching it.
___Before the protest this past Friday, children from Nabi Saleh placed flowers they picked from the surrounding hills into spent tear gas canisters fired at protesters in weeks past. The children of Nabi Saleh take part in the protests against the occupation on a weekly basis.
(More . . .)

❷ from PALESTINE NEWS NETWORK
HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP: ISRAEL WILLFULLY TARGETED, MURDERED GAZA CHILDREN
By PNN/ Bethlehem/
April 19, 2015
A new report by DCIP (Defense for Children International—Palestine) titled “Operation Protective Edge: A War Waged On Gaza’s Children,” displayed documented events proving that that Israel has deliberately murdered Palestinian children in its last offensive on Gaza last summer.
___According to the report, the number of children killed in the last summer offensive on Gaza hit 535, a majority of them under the age 12. Another 3,400 children were injured – over 1,000 maimed for life. They need vital medical care unavailable because of Israel’s lawless siege – ongoing aggression by any standard with full US-led Western support.
(More. . .)
caught-in-clashes-large❸ from +972
WHEN SHOOTING A PALESTINIAN IN THE BACK IS MERELY ‘RECKLESS’
Why trust the military to investigate itself when soldiers who kill unarmed Palestinians are let off the hook time and time again?
By Alma Biblash
April 15, 2015
In January 2013, an Israeli soldier shot a 16-year-old Palestinian who posed absolutely no threat in his back. Samir Awad, from the village Budrus, didn’t survive the valiant military operation, and was killed. Last December, the High Court of Justice harshly criticized the Military Advocate General’s (MAG) handling of the case calling on it to finish its investigation.
___On Tuesday, the State announced that it would charge the soldier reckless and negligent use of a firearm. Had the incident not ended with the death of a teenager, it could have come off as no more than a silly act of mischief.
___Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, which accompanied the Awad family throughout the legal process, called the decision a “new low . . .”
(More . . . )

❹ from PALESTINE INFORMATION CENTER
PALESTINIAN CHILD RELEASED AFTER FOUR MONTHS IN ISRAELI JAIL
April 17, 2015
RAMALLAH, (PIC) — The Israeli prison authority on Thursday afternoon released 15-year-old Khaled al-Sheikh from Ofer prison.
___The child’s father, Hosam al-Sheikh, told the Palestinian Information Center (PIC) yesterday that the Israeli authorities told him of their intention to release his son.
___“His mother, brothers, and myself are currently at the Ofer jail to make the necessary arrangements for Khaled’s release and we informed the authorities on the matter,” the father said.
___Khaled, kidnapped on December 25 from Anan village in Ramallah, was sentenced to a four-month prison term and fined 2,000 shekels.
(More. . . )

❺ from MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI FORCES CONTINUE TO TARGET BILIN, 2 PROTESTERS SHOT
Ma’an – RAMALLAH
(Updated) April 18, 2015
Two Palestinians were shot, one with live fire, and up to 60 protesters suffered excessive tear gas inhalation when Israeli forces violently suppressed the Bilin weekly march on Friday.
___Hundreds of Palestinians are reported to have taken part in the march against the separation wall, also marking Palestinian Prisoner’s Day.
___Israeli forces fired live and rubber-coated steel bullets at the protesters as well as tear-gas canisters.
___Ahmad Mohammad Mansour, 17, was shot in the chest with a live bullet and was taken to the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah, while Munther Ameera was shot with a rubber-coated steel bullet in the lower extremities and treated on the scene.
(More. . .)

❻ from US PALESTINAIN COMMUNITY NETWORK
#BOYCOTTCOKE: BDS FORUM IN MINNEAPOLIS APRIL 19
Sunday, April 19 at 2pm
4200 Cedar Ave S, Minneapolis
In 2005, Palestinians issued a call for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel, because of its violations of international law and attacks on Palestinian rights. BDS is now a worldwide movement against Israeli Apartheid, and the governments, corporations and other institutions that support it. Many Twin Cities organizations have taken up this call, and will share their experiences and strategies.
(More. . .)

“INTIFADA,” BY SAMUEL HAZO

Singly at first, then doubly
then slowly by the tens or twenties,
then steadily on . . .

Interviewed
about the deathcount in Ramallah,
one sergeant said, “We’ll kill
them all, but we’ll never
forgive them for making us do it.”

Later he aimed his Uzi at a boy
armed with a stone and a slingshot,
One general claimed his soldiers
fired only rubber-coated bullets.
When asked about the difference
to the dead, he frowned and shouted,
“Their leaders and parents use
these children as human shields.”
Despite the contradicting photographs
pundits and lobbyists concurred.
After all, who could deny
that boys with all their lives
ahead of them would happily
seek execution, that mothers loved
to see their sons in open
coffins, that choosing a brave
death instead of a lifelong one
was an option for fools?

No one
would claim that occupation
to the occupied resembled daily
suffocation.
No one would add
that suffocation or the fear of it
begot a courage born
of desperation.
No one compared it
to the fate of being locked
in darkness in a stalled elevator
underground.
Like someone buried
upright and alive, anyone
trapped there would stop at nothing.

from We Begin Here: Poems for Palestine and Lebanon. Ed. Kamal Boullata. Northampton, MA: Interlink Pub Group Inc (March 30, 2007).
Samuel Hazo was born in Pittsburgh, July 19, 1928. The son of Lebanese and Syrian immigrants, Hazo tackles themes of faith, family, and war in his poems, which are often elegiac in tone. Poet Naomi Shihab Nye noted Hazo’s poems of “immense intelligence, lyricism, and humanity” on awarding his book Just Once: New and Previous Poems (2002) the Maurice English Award for Poetry.
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