“. . . O God of Glory Listen to the outcry of a dispossessed people . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

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Palestinian terrorist arrested by Israeli Police, November 26, 2015 (Photo: Wadi Hilweh Information Center – Silwan)

❶ Jewish extremists arrested for Dawabsha arson murder
❷ Israel denies outlawed Muslim group entry to Al-Aqsa, assaults members
❸ Army Kidnaps Eight Palestinians, Including Two Children, In Jerusalem
❹ Analysis: Israel’s ‘security’ wall has provided little security
❺ Opinion/Analysis: ISRAEL  IS  WORLD’S  PREMIER  PRODUCER  AND  GENERATOR  OF  TERROR
❻ Poetry by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
JEWISH  EXTREMISTS  ARRESTED  FOR  DAWABSHA  ARSON  MURDER
Dec. 3, 2015
BETHLEHEM ― Several Israeli youths connected to Jewish extremist organizations have been arrested by Israeli forces for suspected involvement in a fatal arson attack on a Palestinian family in July, Israel’s Shin Bet security agency said Thursday.
___An Israeli police spokeswoman for Arab media, Luba al-Samri, confirmed that police “recently arrested young men suspected of membership in a Jewish terrorist organization, and of carrying out different terrorist attacks.”
More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAEL  DENIES  OUTLAWED  MUSLIM  GROUP  ENTRY  TO  AL-AQSA,  ASSAULTS  MEMBERS
Dec. 3, 2015
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces assaulted a group of Palestinian women after they were denied entry to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Thursday, witnesses said.
___One of the women, Khadijah Khuweis, told Ma’an that the group, locally known as the Murabitat, were sitting outside the Hutta Gate after being denied entry to the holy site when Israeli officers suddenly began to push them back and hit them. . . .
___One of the women, Ayda Sidawi, fell to the ground after Israeli officers pushed her and was evacuated to hospital for treatment, she added.
___Meanwhile, over 70 right-wing Israeli Jews toured the Al-Aqsa compound under armed Israeli police guard, locals said.
More . . . 

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Members of Sabeel Ecumenical Theology Center at Al-Aqsa Mosque with Palestinian guide, Nov. 4, 2015. (Photo: Harold Knight)

IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
ARMY  KIDNAPS  EIGHT  PALESTINIANS,  INCLUDING  TWO  CHILDREN,  IN JERUSALEM
Dec. 03, 2015
At least eight Palestinians, including two 11 years of age children, have been kidnapped, on Thursday at dawn and on Wednesday at night, during Israeli military invasions into Palestinian homes, in different parts of occupied East Jerusalem.
___The Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan (Silwanic), said the soldiers have kidnapped Mohammad Nadi Hashlamoun and Ziad Ayyoub Abu Hadwan, from their homes in Ras al-‘Amoud neighborhood, and took them to the al-Maskobiyya interrogation center, west of Jerusalem.
More . . .
Analysis
MONDOWEISS
ISRAEL’S  ‘SECURITY’  WALL  HAS  PROVIDED  LITTLE  SECURITY
Allison Deger and Philip Weiss
Dec. 2, 2015
The current violence in Israel and Palestine has demonstrated the ineffectiveness of the separation barrier, the concrete wall/barbed wire fence that Israel began erecting inside Palestine 13 years ago during the second intifada to provide security. The wall is as high as 25 feet in some places, and travels for hundreds of miles inside Palestine, mostly east of the Green Line, grabbing territory that was supposed to go to a Palestinian state under the Oslo accords.
___Most of the Palestinian attacks have taken place on the Israeli side of the separation barrier.
More . . .
Related . . .
Opinion/Analysis
THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
ISRAEL  IS  WORLD’S  PREMIER  PRODUCER  AND  GENERATOR  OF  TERROR
Khalid Amayreh
Nov. 19, 2015
“Germany needs to respond to terror like Israel does,” the head of Germany’s internal intelligence service (BfV), Hans-Georg Maassen, reportedly said this week.
___With all due respect, the German official is wrong for the following reasons.
___Israel, itself a gigantic crime against humanity by any moral standard imaginable, can never be considered part of the solution for the terror epidemic now hitting many countries.
More . . .
Related . . . CONFESSIONS: TALES OF SAVAGERY BY THE ISRAELI MILITARY

“PSALMS  OF  THE  PALESTINIANS,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM

From here
From this purgatory
Of sorrow
In the Holy Land
The orphaned birds beseech
Mankind
From here
From Jenin
From Old Jerusalem
Alleluia.

Once
A Gaza tune of yearning
Played
Once
The sad refrain
Kindled tragedy
In refugee tents
Once
In Jerusalem
The little ones changed
We shall return
We shall return
Alleluia.

The birds nest on our roof
The sparrow flies
In the horizon
And in exile
Under the hot sun
In the wind
Hearts―eyes
Implored:
God of glory
Return us
Our trial
Has gone on too long!
Alleluia―Alleluia

And then it happened
The metallic eagles swept down
They did not bring the sons of Zion
To Zion
Not the remaining crowds
They did not bring
Pious psalms
To the Wailing Wall
God of Glory!
What did they bring?
Do not ask me
For in my voice a pagan flame
Burns
And listen O God of Glory
Listen to the outcry of a dispossessed people
We have been tested long enough
We have carried the weight of centuries
Long enough
―Why aren’t you convinced? ―
Our days of trial have been too long
So
Return us―Return us
Alleluia―Alleluia―Alleluia.

From: Aruri, Naseer and Edmund Ghareeb, eds. ENEMY  OF  THE  SUN:  POETRY  OF  THE  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE.  Washington, DC: Drum and Spear Press, 1970. Available from Amazon.
Additional poetry by Samih al-Qasim 

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The “Security” Wall dwarfs the hood of a car. Bethlehem. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 6, 2015)

 

“. . . we have lost the most beautiful thing among us . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

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Yousef Ahmad Mahmoud al-‘Allami – Beit Ummar Facebook Page. (Photo published: INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER, Nov. 25, 2015)

❶ Army Kidnaps 34 Palestinians in the West Bank
―A ―Soldiers Assault and Kidnap a Child, Eight Years of Age, In Hebron
❷ Illegal settlements aren’t rogue, they’re government policy
❸ Why won’t Israel allow autopsy on youth killed by police?
❹ Analysis: Part 1: Palestinian youth revolt – Any role for political parties?
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Identifying the wrong culprit for terrorism
❻ Poetry by Ibrahim Nasrallah
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
ARMY  KIDNAPS  34  PALESTINIANS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK
Nov. 25, 2015
Israeli soldiers kidnapped, overnight and on Wednesday morning, 34 Palestinians, including many children, in different parts of the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem.
___ In Hebron, the soldiers kidnapped ten Palestinians, including five children, in the city and nearby towns.
___Three Palestinians, identified as Mohammad Yasser Masalma, Hamdi Qassem Masalma, 18, Qussai Hani Masalma, and Qussai Ghazi Shallash, 20, were kidnapped from their homes in Doura town, west of Hebron.
More . . .
   ❶―ARelated . . . SOLDIERS  ASSAULT  AND  KIDNAP  A  CHILD,  EIGHT  YEARS  OF  AGE,  IN  HEBRON
+972 MAGAZINE
ILLEGAL  SETTLEMENTS  AREN’T  ROGUE,  THEY’RE  GOVERNMENT  POLICY
Adam Aloni
Nov. 24, 2015
Consecutive Israeli governments have fabricated a sophisticated system designed to lend a guise of legality to the seizure of land in the West Bank.
More . . . 

soldiers-settlement
Israeli soldiers stand in front of the West Bank settlement of Beitar Illit, which was partially built on expropriated land belonging to the Palestinian village of Wadi Fukin, West Bank, September 26, 2014. Number (Ahmad al-Bazz/Activestills.org)

THE ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
WHY  WON’T  ISRAEL  ALLOW  AUTOPSY  ON  YOUTH KILLED  BY  POLICE?
Alia Al Ghussain
A refusal by the Israeli police to allow an autopsy on a young Palestinian killed by its officers indicates a cover-up.
___On 17 October, Mutaz Uweisat was killed by the police in Armon Hanatziv, an Israeli settlement in occupied East Jerusalem.
___Israeli police have alleged that the 16-year-old boy tried to stab a border guard.
___Palestinian human rights groups are calling for an investigation of the officer implicated in the killing.
[ . . . . . ]
___ Amnesty has documented a number of instances in which Palestinian youths were killed by Israeli forces when they did not present any imminent threat to life, and says the slayings amount to extrajudicial executions.
Nov. 24, 2015
More . . .
❹ Analysis
AL-SHABAKA: THE PALESTINIAN POLICY NETWORK
PART  1:  PALESTINIAN  YOUTH  REVOLT  –  ANY  ROLE  FOR  POLITICAL  PARTIES?
Nov. 24, 2015
Jamal Juma’
(The following is the first segment of a five-part publication at Al-Shabaka.)
For nearly two months, Palestinians have waited for the political parties to shoulder their role in leading and guiding the uprising. Clearly, they are neither able nor willing to do so. There are several reasons for their inaction.
[ . . . . . ]
There are several factors in favor of creating a space for a new national or local leadership. Even if it subsides, the current uprising has raised the question the current leadership’s eligibility and has legitimized the search for alternatives. It has also united the Palestinian people inside the Green Line, the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza. Ironically, the political forces are the ones who remain divided.
More . . .
❺ Opinion/Analysis
THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS [Dallas, Texas, USA]
IDENTIFYING  THE  WRONG  CULPRIT  FOR  TERRORISM
Sahar Aziz
Nov. 24, 2015
Each time persons claiming to be Muslim commit a terrorist attack in the West, the same two questions arise: 1) Why aren’t Muslims condemning terrorism; and 2) Why aren’t Muslims challenging extremist Islamic interpretations to stop terrorism conducted in its name rather than repeating that terrorism has nothing to do with Islam.
[. . . . . ]
To be sure, Al Qaeda and its progeny, Islamic State, employ Islamic rhetoric to legitimize their political agendas. They pick and choose verses in the Quran and Hadiths to justify an apocalyptic ideology rooted in a clash-of-civilizations worldview.
[ . . . . . ]
So before Americans and Europeans condescendingly demand Muslims get their religious house in order, they should get their own political house in order. A good start is demanding their governments’ foreign policies stop propping up dictators.
More . . .

FROM  “THE  HOURS,”  BY  IBRAHIM  NASRALLAH

The hour of the despot
It will brush away what remains of dust
to see us more clearly
and laugh like a content wolf
when it sees that we have lost
the most beautiful thing among us.

The hour of nightmare
I creep toward absence
carrying the tired earth on my shoulders.
But my blood stirs
and I wake from sleep like a stone
with a bitter body
and veins of wood.

The hour of arrest
Usually, a solitary gazelle prepares songs for its young
and at dawn lullabies the question’s wound.
But suddenly they cross the streets―in great numbers―
and a woman asks:
What are you doing with those guns?
Have they come to arrest the mountains?

The hour of execution
Silently, soldiers go round in the barracks
and famished dogs rush out.
There are the monotonous sounds of footsteps
in chains and in darkness.
Silently, a knotted rope swings
in a rush of bullets and death.

From Nasrallah, Ibrahim. RAIN  INSIDE:  SELECTED  POEMS. Trans. Omnia Amin and Rick London. Willimantic, CT: Curbstone Press, 2009. Available from Amazon.
About Ibrahim Nasrallah.

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Youths parade through Gaza City in solidarity with Palestinians locked up in Israeli prisons. (Picture: Mohammed Abed/AFP/Getty)

“. . . When my people’s tragedy Has turned to farce in others’ eyes . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

sysyia sky
Afternoon sky over Sousia Bedouin Village, South Hebron Hills (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 7, 2015).

❶ Palestinian Girl Shot Dead after Alleged Attack near Jerusalem Market
❷ New Jewish settlements planned ‘on top of’ Bedouin villages
❸ Providing settler terrorism with a tailwind
❹ 3 Palestinians & 1 Israeli Killed Sunday; 94 Palestinians Killed since 10/1 (List)
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Why Netanyahu used the Paris attacks to erroneously depict the latest ‘Intifada’ as a religious and ideological war
❻ Poetry by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PALESTINIAN  GIRL  SHOT  DEAD  AFTER  ALLEGED  ATTACK  NEAR  JERUSALEM  MARKET
Nov. 23, 2015
More . . .
SETTLER  RUNS  OVER,  SHOOTS  AND KILLS  16-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN  GIRL  IN  NABLUS
Nov. 22, 2015
More . . .
156  PALESTINIANS  SHOT  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  IN  WEST  BANK,  GAZA CLASHES [On Friday, Nov. 20]
Nov. 20, 2015
More . . . 
SETTLER  SHOOTS  DEAD  2ND  PALESTINIAN  FOLLOWING  ALLEGED  ATTACK  ATTEMPT
Nov. 22, 2015
More . . .
SETTLERS  ATTACK  PALESTINIAN  HOMES  IN  HEBRON
Nov. 22, 2015
More . . .
+972 MAGAZINE
NEW  JEWISH  SETTLEMENTS  PLANNED  ‘ON  TOP  OF’  BEDOUIN  VILLAGES
Natasha Roth
Nov. 23, 2015
The Israeli government on Sunday approved a plan for five new Jewish settlements to be built in the Negev (Naqab) in the south of Israel. The plan, which was submitted by Housing Minister Yoav Galant of Kulanu, threatens to displace thousands of Bedouin from their homes.
___Two of the settlements are due to be built where Bedouin villages already exist, according to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI). The new town of Daya is to be established on top of the unrecognized village of Katamat, which would displace its 1,500 Bedouin residents. Neve Gurion, meanwhile, is meant to be built on part of the land of the recognized village of Be’er Hadaj, home to 6,000 Bedouin citizens of Israel.
More . . . 

bedouin
A man from the Zanoun family sits on the ruins of his house in the unrecognized Bedouin village of Wadi Al Na’am a few hours after it was demolished by Israeli authorities, Negev, May 18, 2014. Wadi Al-Na’am is the largest unrecognized village in Israel, with about 13,000 inhabitants, most of whom are internally displaced from elsewhere in Israel. The village is not connected to electricity. (Keren Manor/Activestills)

+972 MAGAZINE
PROVIDING  SETTLER  TERRORISM  WITH  A  TAILWIND
Yossi Gurvitz
Nov. 21, 2015
The case of the Givat Ze’ev synagogue combines almost all of the ills of the Israeli occupation in the West Bank. Last week we witnessed a new low, when the High Court of Justice dealt with a request that has sadly become all-too-common: to rescind, through postponement, its own verdict. This was a cowardly and audacious request by the police, to which the court acceded. How did we get here?
___Let’s begin with the legal picture. On July 31st, 2014 the High Court ruled that an illegally-built synagogue in Givat Ze’ev is to be demolished, as it was built on private Palestinian land belonging to Rabah Abdallatif. In plain words: Israeli civilians stole and built a synagogue on it.
More . . .
IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
3  PALESTINIANS  &  1  ISRAELI  KILLED  SUNDAY;  94  PALESTINIANS  KILLED  SINCE  10/1  (LIST)
Nov. 23, 2015
Three Palestinians, including a 16-year old girl, were shot and killed by Israelis on Sunday. All three were accused of ‘having a knife’, but in two of the three killings, eyewitnesses contradicted the Israeli military’s account that the person killed ‘had a knife’
___In the latest numbers on injuries, from this past Friday, November 20th, the Palestinian Health Ministry reported that more than 10,000 Palestinians were injured since October 1st, including at least 1458 who were shot with live army fire, and 1070 shot with rubber-coated steel bullets.
___The Ministry also said that 300 Palestinians suffered fractures and bruises after being assaulted by Israeli soldiers and paramilitary settlers in the West Bank, in addition to 26 Palestinians who suffered burns due to Israeli gas bombs and concussion grenades, while 6400 Palestinians suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
PALESTINE NEWS NETWORK
WHY  NETANYAHU  USED  THE  PARIS  ATTACKS  TO  ERRONEOUSLY  DEPICT  THE  LATEST  ‘INTIFADA’  AS  A  RELIGIOUS  AND  IDEOLOGICAL  WAR
Megan Hanna
Nov. 23, 2015
The sirens had barely stopped wailing before commentators started exploiting the terror attacks in Paris on Friday 13th November, twisting the horrific event to serve a range of varying political agendas. A coordinated group of gunmen associated with ISIS carried out separate attacks in the French capital, leading to the deaths of at least 129 people. While most of the world mourned in respectful grief, an opportunistic few used the event to begin speaking about issues as varied as climate change, anti-immigration and unrest in the Middle East.
___Given his tendency for making tenuous connections between Israel’s plight and disparate foreign events, it’s no surprise that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was one of the first to climb up on France’s bloodied bandwagon to make hasty links between Paris and present-day Israel.
More . . .

“A  HOMELAND,”  BY  SAMIH AL-QASIM

So what,
When in my homeland
The sparrow dies of starvation,
In exile, without a shroud,
While the earthworm is satiated,
Devouring God’s food!

So what,
When the yellow fields
Yield no more to their tillers
Than memories of weariness,
While their rich harvest pours
Into the granaries of the usurper!

So what,
If the cement has diverted
The ancient springs,
Causing them to forget their natural course,
When their owner calls,
They cry in his face: “Who are you?”

So what,
When the almond and the olive tree have turned to timber
Adorning tavern doorways,
And monuments
Whose nude loveliness beautifies halls and bars,
And is carried by tourists
To the farthest corners of the earth,
While nothing remains before my eyes
But dry leaves and tinder!

So what,
When my people’s tragedy
Has turned to farce in others’ eyes,
And my face is a poor bargain
That even the slave-trader gleefully disdains!

So what,
When in barren space the satellites spin,
And in the street walks a beggar, holding a hat,
And the song of autumn is heard!
Blow, East winds!
Our roots are still alive!

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

susyia settlers
From Sousia Village looking across valley to encroaching Jewish settlement (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 7, 2015)

 

“. . . when I am led all alone to be whipped and humiliated . . . at every police station. . .” (‘Abd Al-Latif ‘Aql)

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Ofer Prison, Occupied Territories. Ofer Prison is run by the Israel Prison Service and used to be operated by the Israel Defense Forces’ Military Police Corps. It holds about 1,100 Palestinian prisoners both those under administrative detention and those who have been tried and sentenced. Among them are children. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 5, 2015)

❶ Nearly 400 Palestinian children held in Israeli jails
❷ UN submission: Unlawful transfer of protected persons
❸ Pollard Released After 30 Years in Prison
❹ Army Kidnaps Fifteen Palestinians in Hebron
❺ Opinion/Analysis: ‘It Has Become a Prison’: The ghettoization of Hebron
❻ Poetry by ‘Abd Al-Latif ‘Aql
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
NEARLY  400  PALESTINIAN  CHILDREN  HELD  IN  ISRAELI  JAILS
Nov. 20, 2015
RAMALLAH ― A prisoners’ rights group said Friday that nearly 400 Palestinian children between the ages of 11 and 17 are currently being held in Israeli jails.
___The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society said in a statement that 11 of those detained were being held without charge or trial under administration detention orders. . . .
___Some 700 children have been detained since the beginning of October — mainly in the Hebron and Jerusalem districts — many of whom were released under specific conditions including bail or house arrest, the society said.
More . . .
MILITARY COURT WATCH
UN  SUBMISSION:  UNLAWFUL  TRANSFER  OF  PROTECTED  PERSONS
Nov. 12, 2015
MCW lodged a submission with the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention relating to the unlawful transfer and detention of Palestinian minors from the West Bank to prisons located inside Israel in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
___According to evidence provided by the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) an average of 88 per cent of Palestinian detainees from the West Bank, including minors, are transferred and detained inside Israel. It is currently estimated that this affects between 7,000 to 8,000 Palestinians each year and is classified under international law as a war crime.
More . . .

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The gate to Ofer Prison. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 5, 2015)

IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
POLLARD  RELEASED  AFTER  30  YEARS  IN  PRISON
Nov. 21, 2015
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, on Friday, addressed American spy, Jonathan Pollard, who was released on parole after serving 30 years in prison, after handing over top-secret classified information to Israel.
___“The people of Israel welcome the release of Jonathan Pollard,” the PM said in a video statement. “As someone who has raised his case among successive US presidents many times, I longed for this day,” Netanyahu continued.
___The former intelligence analyst for the US government was arrested in 1985, and pleaded guilty in 1987, to charges in violation of the Espionage Act.
More . . .
IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
ARMY  KIDNAPS  FIFTEEN  PALESTINIANS  IN  HEBRON
Nov. 21, 2015
Israeli soldiers invaded, on Saturday at dawn, the southern West Bank district of Hebron, searched dozens of homes and kidnapped fifteen Palestinians.
___The soldiers invaded the Joret Bahlas area, north of Hebron city, and various neighborhoods before kidnapping the Palestinians.
___Local sources said the soldiers kidnapped Ismael Taiseer Bader, 44, Luay Faisal al-Hashlamoun, 30, Adel al-Eeda al-Herbawi, 48, Othman Sharif Tamimi, 18, Nader Hamed Natsha, Mohammad Ali al-Qawasma, and Ezzat Sha’ban al-Khatib, after violently storming their homes and searching them, in Hebron city.
___ The army also invaded Deir Samet village, southwest of Hebron, searched homes and kidnapped . . .
More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
MONDOWEISS
‘IT  HAS  BECOME  A  PRISON’:  THE  GHETTOIZATION  OF  HEBRON
Megan Hanna
Nov. 11, 2015
Hebron’s Old City, located in the “H2 area” under full Israeli military control, is subject to dramatic new restrictions introduced last week. Israeli soldiers seized several homes in the Tel Rumedia area and barred the residents from going in or out, declaring the area a military zone and banning access to non-residents, in a move that parallels security restrictions imposed recently upon areas of East Jerusalem.
Since the beginning of last month 22 Palestinians have been killed in Hebron, and nine in the Old City that has been the epicentre of escalating tensions.
___Even for the 50 families who live in Tel Rumeida, who had a mere few days to register their name and ID card to the Israeli authorities, the plans will severely restrict their freedom of movement, as they will have to undergo rigorous security searches every time they wish to leave or enter their homes.
___According to a resident of Tel Rumeida, “They told me I have the number 36 [on the list with who’s allowed to go in and out], it’s just like in prison. They try to make you a number, you’re not a person”.
More . . .

(Palestinian poets frequently use the image of “lover” for Palestine.)

“LOVE  PALESTINIAN-STYLE,”  BY  ‘ABD AL-LATIF ‘AQL

In times of drought you are my figs and olives,
Your barrenness is my fragrant gown.

Of the rubble that was your eyes I erect my home,
I love you alive, I love you in death.
When hungry, I feed on thyme.

I feel your hair against my face and I pine,
My weary face turns red.

I am born in the palms of your hands, and embryo,
I grow and grow, and I reach maturity.

I drink the meaning of my life from your gaze,
Then my being is awakened and is intoxicated.

I journey across frontiers, you are my suitcase,
You are my forged passport.

I boast that I can smuggle your eyes
Across borders;
I boast and boast and pride surges within me.

And when soldiers confiscate you,
Even before hashish,
And gouge the pupils of my eyes,

I feel I have been cleansed of the shame;
I have become purer
And more immaculate.

When they fear what may be under my armpits,
They confine me in small cells;
I sign your name
At the end of police reports.

And when I am led all alone
To be whipped and humiliated,
And lashed at every police station,
I feel we’re lovers, who died from ecstasy,
A dark-skinned man and his woman.

You become me and I become you―
Luscious figs and shelled almonds.
And when soldiers smash my head
And force me to sip the cold of prison
To forget you―I love you even more.

‘Abd Al-Latif ‘Aql was born in 1942 in Deir Istiya, a village near Nablus. His family was exiled in 1948, and he lived in Amman and studied in Damasus and the U.S. where earned a PhD in social psychology. He worked as a school teacher in the West Bank for many years. He has published many volumes of poetry. His two plays incurred the wrath of the Israelis, and were forced to end performance at Bir Zeit University.
___From: A  LOVER  FROM  PALESTINE  AND  OTHER  POEMS:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  PALESTINIAN  POETRY. Ed. Abdul Wahab Al-Messiri. Washington, DC: Free Palestine Press, 1970.
Available from Abe Books. 

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Employee parking, Ofer Prison. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 5, 2015)

 

“. . . my tongue has not been silenced yet . . .” (Mourid Barghouti)

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‘My political party is my poem.’ Mourid Barghouti feels that the Arabic language is under attack [Credit: Ahmed Alaidy, 2010. AlJazeera]
❶ Report: Israel killed 23 Palestinian children since the start of 2015
❷ Israeli forces raid Bethlehem-area refugee camp, injure 2
❸ Gaza man shocked after being wrongly identified as Paris attacker
❹ What’s the difference between habbeh and intifada?
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Israel tries to reap propaganda benefits from Paris bombings
❻ Poetry by Mourid Barghouti
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
REPORT:  ISRAEL  KILLED  23  PALESTINIAN  CHILDREN  SINCE  THE  START  OF  2015
Nov. 19, 2015
RAMALLAH, (PIC)– The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) have killed 23 Palestinian children since the beginning of the current year, according to Palestinian official statistics released on the occasion of the Universal Children’s Day.
___20 November marks the Universal Children’s Day on which the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959 and the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989.
___A report issued by the Palestinian central bureau of statistics on Wednesday stated that 18 Palestinian children had been killed by the IOF since the start of al-Quds intifada in early October.
___The IOF also kidnapped and detained more than 3,700 children between 2010 and 2014, the report said.
More . . .
Related . . . IN  PICTURES:  THE  OCCUPATION  ARRESTS  10  JERUSALEMITE  CHILDREN
MAAN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  RAID  BETHLEHEM-AREA  REFUGEE  CAMP,  INJURE  2
Nov. 19, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) – Israeli forces on Thursday shot and injured two young Palestinian men in Duheisha refugee camp south of Bethlehem during a dawn arrest raid, locals said.
___Locals told Ma’an that large numbers of Israeli soldiers stormed the southern West Bank camp ransacking more than 20 homes before detaining 22-year-old Muhammad Nidal Abu Akar.
___In response to the incursion, young men and teenagers living in the camp hurled stones and improvised explosive devices at the soldiers who deployed heavily in the streets and on rooftops of buildings.
___Israeli soldiers showered the camp and the main street leading to Bethlehem with tear gas and fired live ammunition at the protesters, hitting two in the feet, according to locals.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli soldiers also fired gunshots at security guards of an UNRWA-affiliated school near the main road.
More . . .

sami abu ras
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
GAZA  MAN  SHOCKED  AFTER  BEING  WRONGLY  IDENTIFIED  AS  PARIS  ATTACKER
Nov. 18, 2015
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A young man from the Gaza Strip has spoken of his shock after being falsely accused of being one of theIS militants involved in the Paris attacks on Friday, which killed over 130 people.
___Sami Abu Rus, a journalism student at Al-Aqsa University, told Ma’an that he was shocked after seeing his image posted online by Islamic State media groups praising him as one of the “lions” who attacked Paris.
___Abu Rus, who resides in al-Nuseirat refugee camp, said he has never left the Gaza Strip and only found out that his photo had been used after being told by friends.
___He initially dismissed it as a joke, before his photo was also published by a site affiliated with IS.
More . . . 
AL-MONITOR (PALESTINE PULSE)
WHAT’S  THE  DIFFERENCE  BETWEEN  HABBEH  AND  INTIFADA?
Daoud Kuttab
Nov. 18, 2015
Palestinians and Arabs are still unsure about what to call the protest activities that began on the eve of the Jewish New Year on Sept. 13, 2015. Since then, 89 Palestinians and 12 Israeli soldiers and Jewish settlers have been killed and many more injured.
___After the 1987 first intifada and the 2000 second intifada, it has taken pundits and politicians some time to decide whether what we are witnessing today is a full-blown uprising, or intifada in Palestinian terminology, or simply short, popular outbursts of protests, what Palestinians call “habbeh jamaherieh” in Arabic.
___The differences have followed the split within the Palestinian movement with pro-Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas media and politicians calling it habbeh, while pro-Hamas leaders and media are calling it an Al-Quds intifada or Al-Aqsa intifada.
More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
ISRAEL  TRIES  TO  REAP  PROPAGANDA  BENEFITS  FROM  PARIS  BOMBINGS
Khalid Amayreh
As usual in these circumstances, Israel is trying to exploit the Paris bombings for its propaganda purposes.
___Israeli and Zionist officials have been insinuating that the widely condemned terrorist bombings in Paris, for which the ISIS took responsibility, justified Israel’s crackdown on Palestinian resistance against Jewish colonialism, especially Israel’s lebensraum policies in the West Bank.
___Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has been quoted as saying that the Paris bombings should make France and other countries understand Israel’s war on Palestinian terror.
___Netanyahu’s opportunistic remarks seem to have been motivated by two main considerations.
More . . .
Related . . . THIS  WEEK  IN  PALESTINE:  JOURNALIST/AUTHOR  KHALID  AMAYREH

(A poem about Barghouti’s life as an exile almost continuously since the 1967 war.)

“I  HAVE  NO  PROBLEM,”  BY  MOURID  BARGHOUTI
I look at myself:
I have no problem.
I look all right
and, to some girls,
my grey hair might even be attractive;
my eyeglasses are well made,
my body temperature is precisely thirty seven,
my shirt is ironed and my shoes do not hurt.
I have no problem.
My hands are not cuffed,
my tongue has not been silenced yet,
I have not, so far, been sentenced
and I have not been fired from my work;
I am allowed to visit my relatives in jail,
I’m allowed to visit some of their graves in some countries.
I have no problem.
I am not shocked that my friend
has grown a horn on his head.
I like his cleverness in hiding the obvious tail
under his clothes, I like his calm paws.
He might kill me, but I shall forgive him
for he is my friend;
he can hurt me every now and then.
I have no problem.
The smile of the TV anchor
does not make me ill any more
and I’ve got used to the Khaki stopping my colours
night and day.
That is why
I keep my identification papers on me, even at
the swimming pool.
I have no problem.
Yesterday, my dreams took the night train
and I did not know how to say goodbye to them.
I heard the train had crashed
in a barren valley
(only the driver survived).
I thanked God, and took it easy
for I have small nightmares
that I hope will develop into great dreams.
I have no problem.
I look at myself, from the day I was born till now.
In my despair I remember
that there is life after death;
there is life after death
and I have no problem.
But I ask:
Oh my God,
is there life before death?
――Translated by Radwa Ashour

From poem hunter.com
Interview with Mourid Barghouti 

dhueisha
Israeli forces enter a Palestinian home in Duheisha refugee camp in the occupied West Bank town of Bethlehem. (MaanImages)

 

“. . . fields yield no more to their tillers than memories of weariness. . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

From "Maps," by RAFAT ASAD
From “Maps,” by RAFAT ASAD

From This Week in Palestine
ARTIST OF THE MONTH: RAFAT ASAD
Julie Couzinet
May 2015 (Issue 205)
Fully connected to his environment and the people who surround him, Palestinian artist Rafat Asad opens with each of his productions a new and intimate window onto Palestine’s landscape.
___Born in Nablus in 1974, Rafat obtained a BA in fine arts from An-Najah University in 1998. Although he mainly focuses on paintings, he explores other forms of expression through light and sound installations, videos, and performances. His work has been shown in group exhibitions in Palestine, Cuba, Europe, Japan, the United States, and the Arab world, as well as in three solo exhibitions in Nablus, Ramallah, and London.
(More. . .)

From +972 Magazine
S. AFRICAN JEWS IN LUBYA: WE’RE HERE TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE NAKBA
Natasha Roth
May 2, 2015
In a forest glade set atop the remains of the destroyed Palestinian village of Lubya in the Lower Galilee, a delegation of South African Jews made a public apology to the descendants of refugees from Lubya and their families Friday evening.
___The event, a joint initiative of the South African delegation and representatives of Lubya’s displaced persons, concerned the use of donations made by the South African Jewish community to the Jewish National Fund (JNF), which went toward planting the “South Africa Forest.” This forest is part of the larger Lavie Forest that covers what was once Lubya, which was depopulated on July 16-17, 1948. Kibbutz Lavie, founded in 1949, was also established on the lands of the former village. . .
(More. . .)

Youngest of the Zaatari brother of East Jerusalem
Youngest of the Zaatari brother of East Jerusalem

From Ma’an News Agency
ISRAEL DETAINS 4 CHILDREN IN 2 DAYS FROM SAME JERUSALEM FAMILY
April 30, 2015
BETHLEHEM — Undercover Israeli operatives detained and interrogated a 7-year-old Palestinian boy and his twelve-year-old brother in occupied East Jerusalem Tuesday, only a day after two 15-year-olds from the same family were taken.
___The boy and his older brother, from the Zaatari family in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Wadi al-Joz, were detained by Israeli operatives dressed as Palestinian locals while walking in the street Tuesday evening, the boys’ grandfather told Ma’an.
___The Zaatari family has had four children detained this week. . .
Israel detained 1,266 Palestinian children below the age of 15 in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in 2014, according to a PLO report, and over 10,000 Palestinian children have been detained by Israeli forces since 2000.
(More. . .)
(More about Israeli treatment of Palestinian children)

from Ma’an News Agency
HUNDREDS PRAY OUTSIDE CLOSED MOSQUE IN BEERSHEBA
May 2, 2015
BEERSHEBA (Ma’an) — Some 250 Palestinians performed Friday prayers outside a mosque in Beersheba in southern Israel that Israeli authorities have kept closed since 1948.
___The prayers came amid heavy Israeli police presence, with police sealing the roads leading toward the mosque.
___The initiative was called for by Sheikh Hassan Abu Ubeid from al-Ramla. . .
___Abu Ubeid told Ma’an: “We are here to continue what those who fought before us started in liberating our mosque. It is unreasonable that our mosque has been closed for 67 years and we stand still”. . .
___The Ottoman-era mosque was first closed to Palestinian worshipers in 1948, when it was used as an Israeli prison during the war that led to the creation of the Israeli state . . .
(More. . .)
(More about the Mosque. . .)

Praying outside the Beersheba Mosque
Praying outside the Beersheba Mosque

From Al-Monitor (Palestine Pulse)
HAMAS SWEEPS STUDENT COUNCIL ELECTIONS IN WEST BANK
Author Adnan Abu Amer
Translator Pascale Menassa
April 28, 2015
The results of the student council elections at Palestinian universities in the West Bank came as a big surprise for Hamas and the Palestinian Authority — a happy one for the former and a bad one for the latter. Hamas was able to achieve electoral success despite the security pressure it has been facing from the PA and Israel at once.
___The April 21 election at Palestine Polytechnic University in Hebron, in the south of the West Bank, resulted in a tie between the Islamic Bloc, Hamas’ student arm, and the Fatah Youth Movement, with each party winning 15 seats. Meanwhile, on April 22, Birzeit University announced the victory of the Islamic Bloc, which beat Fatah with 905 votes.
___Abdul Rahman Hamdan, the head of the Islamic Bloc, told Al-Monitor, “This victory is proof that Palestinians support the resistance, as it is the only way to obtain our rights and refuse the PA’s project, which is based on negotiations.
(More. . .)

“A HOMELAND,” BY SAMIH AL-QASIM
So what,
When in my homeland
The sparrow dies of starvation,
In exile, without a shroud,
While the earthworm is satiated, devouring God’s food!

So what,
When the yellow fields
Yield no more to their tillers
Than memories of weariness,
While their rich harvest pours
Into the granaries of the usurper!

So what,
If the cement has diverted
The ancient springs
Causing them to forget their natural course,
When their owner calls,
They cry in his face: “Who are you?”

So what,
When the almond and the olive have turned to timber
Adorning tavern doorways,
And monuments
Whose nude loveliness beautifies halls and bars,
And is carried by tourists
To the farthest corners of the earth,
While noting remains before my eyes
But dry leaves and tinder!

So what,
When my people’s tragedy
Has turned to farce in others’ eyes,
And my face is a poor bargain
That even the slave-trader gleefully disdains!

So what,
When in barren space the satellites spin,
And in the streets walks a beggar, holding a hat,
And the song of autumn is heard!

Blow, East winds!
Our roots are still alive.

Samīħ al-Qāsim سميح القاسم‎; (born 1939) is a Palestinian Druze whose Arabic poetry is well known throughout the Arab World. His poetry is influenced by two primary periods of his life: Before and after the Six-Day War. Al-Qasim has published several volumes and collections of poetry.

The Beersheba Mosque
The Beersheba Mosque