“. . . I recognized my treacherous guests . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

❶ Israel to evacuate 200 Palestinians in Jordan Valley for settlement expansion

  • Background: “A Palestinian State Now or Equal Rights Until There Is a Solution: We Can Accept Either but We Accept Neither.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture

❷ Israel declares Gaza border closed military zone: Is there new offensive on Gaza?
❸ Israel steals artifacts from Roman palace in Hebron
❹ Al-Quds University, Heinrich Heine celebrate Eighth Commencement of Joint Masters of European Studies
❺ POETRY by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Ma’an News Agency 
Nov. 10, 2017 ― Israeli authorities are reportedly planning to evacuate some 200 Palestinians from their homes and agricultural lands in the Jordan Valley are of the northern occupied West Bank, according to local sources.
___Member of the Jordan Valley municipal council Mahdi Daraghmeh told Ma’an on Friday that Israeli forces delivered demolition and evacuation notices to 30 Palestinian families in the Ein al-Hilweh and Umm al-Jamal villages in the northern Jordan Valley on Thursday, Nov. 9th.
___The notices, which Daraghmeh said were dated Nov. 1st, gave the residents eight days — until Nov. 9th — to evacuate some 60 homes and structures voluntarily.   MORE . . .

Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture, vol. 22, no. 2/3, July 2017, pp. 53-58.
Israel’s Never-Ending Occupation Seriously Endangers Israel     [. . . .] Israel’s never-ending occupation of the land and lives of another people is not just seriously endangering Israel — not to mention deepening the despair of the Palestinians — but it is also making the situation of Jews around the world increasingly precarious. That makes it personal.
___But there is an even more profound personal dimension, one that goes to the very heart of what it means to be Jewish. I was asked recently what originally attracted me to the fields of human rights and peace. Almost without thinking, and to the visible surprise of the questioner, I answered, “the rabbis of the Orthodox Jewish school I attended.”
The Essence of Judaism: “Seek Peace and Pursue It”     . . . I was very taken by some of the passages that we were taught from the Hebrew Bible, the Torah; passages like: “Justice, justice, shalt thou pursue” (Deuteronomy 16:20). Why, the sages asked, repeat “justice”? Was it a typo? Did the scribe have a stutter? Came the answer: “Justice must be pursued with justice”. It is not enough for justice to be the goal; it must be the means, too. Astonishing for now, let alone for then!
[. . . .] These time-honored Jewish ideals — justice, freedom, equality, peace, mutual respect — have made an extraordinary contribution to human civilization. They lie at the very core of Jewish identity and are the glue that binds together Jews of many different persuasions in many different countries. Jews have proudly espoused these values historically for themselves and for others which, at least in part, explains why Jews have disproportionally been active in civil rights causes.
[. . . .] We now face the naked reality of a state that declares itself, loudly and often, to be Jewish, and demands of others that it be recognized as Jewish, gearing itself up to withholding fundamental human rights from millions of people indefinitely — a standpoint that is in total defiance of quintessential Jewish principles. Indeed, one may ask, would such a blatantly inequitable policy be condoned by the self-appointed custodians of Jewish values if enacted by any other country?       FULL ARTICLE.

Days of Palestine
Nov. 09, 2017 ― The Israeli occupation authorities announced on Wednesday that the area near the border of the Gaza Strip is now a “closed military zone.”
___Israeli settlers living in the periphery of the Gaza Strip are now forbidden from approaching or entering this area at all. Even military patrols were stopped.
___The decision was taken because Israel is afraid of surprise attacks by Palestinians following its bombing of a tunnel which killed 12 Palestinians on 30 October.   MORE . . .   …
Palestine News Network – PNN
Nov. 10, 2017 ― Israeli occupation forces along with employees from the Israeli Ministry of Antiquities and Civil Administration staff raided Mowaraq Palace in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron stealing collectables, Quds Press reported yesterday.
___Palestinian sources said occupation forces stole some of the bricks and collectables in the Roman palace, which is one of the oldest heritage sites in Palestine.
___A large number of Israeli troops were deployed around the palace while the employees of the Israeli Ministry of Antiquities carried out digging and search for a period of about five hours.    MORE . . .   ..
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA     
Nov. 10, 2017 – Al-Quds University and Heinrich Heine Thursday celebrated the eighth commencement of the Joint Masters of European Studies, said al-Quds University in a press release.
___The partnership between Al-Quds University in Jerusalem and Heinrich Heine in Dusseldorf has achieved an additional major milestone as another class of the joint Masters of European Studies successfully completed the program this month.
___The graduate program, which was established in 2009 as a result of a bilateral partnership between the two institutions, celebrated in Dusseldorf the Eighth Commencement for the graduates of this selective masters program. Senior members of Al-Quds University’s leadership were also present.
___Students of this graduate program between Al-Quds University and Heinrich Heine University are selected jointly. The program is highly selective, and admitted students receive full scholarships that cover both tuitions and living expenses.   MORE . . .    ..

For centuries
I did not hate
But now
I am forced to raise my untiring spear
In the face of the dragon,
To draw a sword of fire
In the face of Baal
To become Elijah in the twentieth century.

For centuries
I did not apostate
But now
I strike at the gods in my heart
The gods that sold my people
In the twentieth century.

For centuries
I did not turn visitors
Away from my door
Then one morning I opened my eyes
To find my food stolen
My wife strangled
And my child’s back a field of wounds.
I recognized my treacherous guests.
I planted mines and daggers at my door
And I swore by the traces of the knife
That none of these guests shall enter my house
In the twentieth century.

For centuries
I was only a poet
In the bands of the Sufis
But now
I am an erupting volcano
In the twentieth century.

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.
About Samih Al-Qasim

“. . . buried in the forgotten graveyard of the living . . .” (Fouzi El-Asmar)

6f7de8c92380ec76f78bf24ae11d1854❶ Balfour and Britain’s broken promise
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Ugly Truths Behind Balfour and Beersheba
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Palestine FM responds to Theresa May’s pride in Balfour Declaration

  • Background: “National Narratives and the Oslo Peace Process: How Peacebuilding Paradigms Address Conflicts over History.” Nations & Nationalism.

❷ Israeli forces open fire on Palestinian fishermen, raze lands in Gaza
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Video: Israeli settlers attack Palestinians harvesting olives near Nablus
❸ POETRY by Fouzi El-Asmar
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Tim Llewellyn
Oct. 26, 2017 ― If the British Conservative Government of Teresa May represented the views of the people of Britain rather than the preferences of the state of Israel on the disastrous outcome for the Palestinian Arabs of the Balfour Declaration of November 2, 1917, she would not be planning to celebrate this 100th anniversary with Binyamin Netanyahu, Israel’s Prime Minister.
[. . . .] As it is, her November 2 tete a tete with Mr. Netanyahu, Lord Rothschild and Lord Balfour, a descendant of Arthur J. Balfour who had no direct descendants, and a subsequent November 9, rally organized by Christian Zionists at the cavernous Albert Hall, in London’s Hyde Park, which Britain’s leader and Zionist and Israeli notables will also attend, are being pre-empted and countered by a host of events throughout the British Isles. These are not only highly critical of Britain’s disastrous legacy in its former Mandated Territory, but urge it to recognize Palestine as a state and work practically to grant the Palestinian Arabs their freedom and self-determination.   MORE . . .
The Palestinian Information Center
Oct. 27, 2017 ― Within a month two events will be celebrated that have a left a deep imprint on the ‘western’ consciousness. The most significant is the Balfour Declaration, a piece of paper whose destructive consequences the people of the Middle East have had to live with every day since it was signed on November 2, 1917.
[. . . .] [Lord Balfour, Foreign Secretary of England] regarded the rights and aspirations of the ‘Arabs’ as inconsequential compared to those of the Jews. More than 90 per cent of the population of Palestine in 1917, the Palestinian Arabs, Muslim and Christian, were described in his declaration as ‘existing non-Jewish communities.’
[. . . .] The Palestine Balfour wanted to turn into a Jewish ‘national home’ had a Palestinian population of about 600,000 and a Jewish population, composed mostly of recently arrived European settlers, of eight to ten per cent of that number.
[. . . .] On October 31, two days before Balfour issued his pernicious declaration, Australian cavalrymen had broken through Ottoman defences at Beersheba (Bir Saba’) . . . The centenary will be celebrated this year by visiting contingents of Australians and New Zealanders.   MORE . . . 
Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom)
Oct. 26, 2017 ― Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Riyad al-Malki on Thursday said that The Palestinian side is following with great caution and deep concern the statements of British Prime Minister Teresa Mae, in which she declared her country’s pride in the establishment of the Israeli occupying state, and its insistence on commemorating the centennial of the Balfour Declaration.
___Al-Maliki told Voice of Palestine radio on Thursday that the British official’s position reflected the British government’s persistence and indifference to the crime committed 100 years ago, and reflects a challenge by Britain to Palestine and the international community.     MORE . . .

Khoury, Nadim.
Nations & Nationalism,
vol. 22, no. 3, July 2016, pp. 465-483.
(Nadim Khoury―Department of Philosophy, University of Tromsø―The Arctic University of Norway)
This article focuses on the effects of the Oslo Peace Process on the Israeli and Palestinian national narratives. It is widely acknowledged that history represents a barrier to long-term peace between Israelis and Palestinians. . . .  Given the danger these national narratives pose, one would expect that the architects of the Israeli–Palestinian peace process would have paid close attention to them. If they are part of the problem, then they should be part of the solution. Scholars argue, however, that the agreements that make up the Israeli–Palestinian peace process have largely ignored the matter. And indeed, there was no mention of narratives in the 1993 Declaration of Principles.
[. . . .] The Palestinian master narrative is structured as the opposite of the Zionist one. Rather than ethnic and religious continuity, however, it is a story of continuous presence on the land. Palestinians are and have always been the inhabitants of historical Palestine. The Palestinian narrative strongly emphasizes the period starting with the Arab conquest, but it encompasses many other historical layers that include the Canaanites, the Philistines, and even the Israelites. British imperialism and Zionism disrupted this continuity, first in 1917 with the Balfour Declaration, and then in 1948 with the creation of the state of Israel. The latter is commemorated as the Nakba . . . [which] operates as a founding moment in the Palestinian national story, followed by the Naksa, ‘the setback’ of the 1967 war that caused more displacement and the loss of all of historical Palestine . . .
___While both [Palestinian and Israeli] narratives appear as opposite mirror images, the conflict over narratives that divide Israelis and Palestinians are not symmetrical and should not be examined as such. History, as the saying goes, is written by the victor, and since 1948, Israel has been the victor. As a result, it established its narrative at the expense of the Palestinian narrative, by, for example, physically destroying, repopulating, and renaming many Palestinian towns or outlawing Palestinian commemorative practices. This asymmetry is reinforced by the fact that, for decades, the Palestinians lacked the proper institutions (state, museums, and archives) to promote their narrative. This situation changed when Palestinians were given an official right to narrate their story with the Oslo Peace Process. As this article will show, however, this did not address the asymmetry between the two parties.    SOURCE.

Ma’an News Agency 
Oct. 27, 2017 ― Israeli forces open fire on Palestinian fisherman off the coast of northern Gaza on Friday, while several Israeli bulldozers entered into the southern part of the coastal enclave and razed lands in the area.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli bulldozers entered the “buffer zone” inside the Gaza border fence with Israel, and leveled lands in eastern Khuzaa, in the southern Gaza Strip.
___Meanwhile, Israeli naval forces opened live fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza. No injuries were reported.   MORE . . .
Ma’an News Agency
Oct. 26, 2017 ―  Israeli settlers reportedly attacked Palestinians who were harvesting olives in the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus on Thursday, injuring three Palestinians, including one woman.
___Ghassan Daghlas, an official who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank told Ma’an that Israeli settlers from the illegal Itamar settlement assaulted Palestinians picking olives in the Ras Hazem area in Deir al-Hatab village.
___Daghlas added that Israeli settlers threw rocks and sharp objects and physically assaulted the Palestinians as they were working on their land.   MORE . . .

Of what benefit is it, if man were to gain the whole world
But lose the green almond in his father’s orchard?
Of what benefit is it, if man
Were to drink coffee in Paris
But none in his mother’s house?
Of what benefit is it, if man were to tour the whole world
But lose the flowers on the hills of his native land?
He gains nothing but deadly silence
Within the hearts of the living.

You look through the mirror of lands not your own
And see your exiled face;
You recognize your face
Despite the deadly dust of travel
From Jaffa, to Lydda, to Haifa,
Through the Mediterranean to exile;
You recognize your face
And try to deny that face!
Your worship your own face
Even though exile has obliterated its features;
The hangman of the twentieth century assumes the countenance
Of the eternal face!
You close your eyes
To worship your face in the darkness of this century.
You deny . . . you worship,
You deny . . . you worship,
And the God of truth cries to your face:
“He who denies his face
Is renounced by all the birds of paradise in this universe,
And those whom silence has turned mute
Will never be heard by the roses of the field
He who kills the nightingale of his dreams
Will be buried in the forgotten graveyard of the living.”
You open your eyes
And see the face of your country in the mirror of exile.

The deadly silence in the hearts of the living
Strips away the skin of your face
It cuts and dries your flesh.
Then hangs what remains on poles
Under the forgotten sun of the West.

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.
Remembering Fouzi El-Asmar.

“. . . we will continue our prayers and conjure new seasons for our lives . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

❶ PRCS: 1,090 Palestinians injured by Israeli forces over course of 10 days

Background: “Al-Aqsa Mosque: Do Not Intrude!” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture

❷ Israeli forces level lands near southern Gaza border
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli navy opens gunfire at fishermen off Gaza
❸ POETRY by Ibrahim Nasrallah
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Ma’an News Agency  
July 24, 2017.   The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) released a statement Monday detailing the casualties of the past 10 days, ever since Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem launched a civil disobedience campaign in the city in protest of increased Israeli security measures at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
___Hundreds of Palestinians have been injured over the past week during violent clashes and demonstrations against new Israeli security measures at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
___On Monday evening, a Palestinian was shot in the head during clashes in the Jerusalem-area town of Hizma, with the Palestinian Ministry of Health reporting him to be in critical condition.     MORE . . .

Abu Sway, Mustafa. “AL-AQSA  MOSQUE:  DO  NOT  INTRUDE!”  Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture, vol. 20/21, no. 4/1, Dec. 2015, pp. 108-113.
“Verily, ‘Al-Aqsa’ Is a name for the whole mosque which is surrounded by the wall, the length and width of which are mentioned here, for the building that exists in the southern part of the Mosque, and the other ones such as the Dome of the Rock and the corridors and other [buildings] are novel (muhdatha).”  (Mujir Al-Din Al-Hanbali, Al-Uns Al-Jalil fo Tarikh Al-Quds wal-Khalil, vol.2, p.24.)
More than 500 years ago, when Mujir Al-Din Al-Hanbali offered the above definition of Al-Aqsa Mosque in the year 900 AH/1495, there were no conflicts, no occupation and no contesting narratives surrounding the site. Not only do the Israeli occupation authorities prevent freedom of movement and freedom of worship, they interfere in defining Al-Aqsa Mosque by restricting the meaning of Al-Aqsa Mosque to the southernmost building, Qibli Mosque, father than all 144 dunums or 36 acres. The Israeli occupation authorities consider the open yards within Al-Aqsa Mosque as belonging to public parks, with no jurisdiction for the Waqf. In doing so, the Israeli occupation authorities justify their own role in permitting and protecting extremist Israelis’ and others’ entry into Al-Aqsa Mosque compound against the will of the Waqf administration.
[. . . .]  It should be known that all policies, actions and “facts on the ground” created by the Israeli occupation are null apd void; they are in violation of international and humanitarian laws. Only Muslims have the right to define their own religious space and what to do with it, for they have exclusive rights to it.
[. . . .]  Places of worship are meant to be exclusive. Those in authority should never be blinded by their own powers to the degree they infringe on the religious space of the other. When invited by Patriarch Sophronius to pray at the Holy Sepulchre Church, Caliph Umar Ibn Al-Khattab declined politely, citing his fear that future Muslim generations might claim this as a right.  This is true leadership. This should be the prevailing ethos between those in power and the religious space of the other. It might help the powerful to show some humility if they could learn from history, and the history of Jerusalem in particular, that power could shift.     COMPLETE ARTICLE . . . 

Ma’an News Agency
July 25, 2017.   Israeli military vehicles and bulldozers crossed the border into the besieged Gaza Strip on Tuesday morning, where they leveled lands in the “buffer zone” of southern Gaza.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that six bulldozers under heavy military protection leveled lands in the outskirts of al-Qarara, north of the city of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip.
___According to the witnesses, Israeli drones hovered over the area during the incursion. No gunfire was reported. . . .
___An Israeli army spokesperson said they were looking into reports.
___Israeli military incursions inside the besieged Gaza Strip and near the “buffer zone,” which lies on both land and sea sides of Gaza, have long been a near-daily occurrence.   MORE . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  NAVY  OPENS  GUNFIRE  AT  FISHERMEN  OFF  GAZA   Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
July 25, 2017.   Israeli fishermen early Tuesday morning opened machine gunfire at Palestinian fishermen while sailing offshore Gaza city, causing damage to one of their boats.
___WAFA correspondent said Israeli naval boats attacked the fishermen with gunfire while the latter were sailing at less than four miles from the shore, causing damage to one of their boats.    MORE . . .

Farah, we will begin our prayers
amid this bloody sorrow
and among the lonely pine.
What makes the mountains this morning much kinder,
the sun more glamorous,
the wind a song that celebrates the heights?
What makes our beloved jasmine
more pure than we imagined
and more disobedient than we had thought?
What makes these mountains
and these trees that we allowed to be taller than us
much shorter than us now?
Farah, we will continue our prayers
and conjure new seasons for our lives,
new rivers to flow in our veins
and a new place for the world’s singing.
We will continues our prayers
and when love is total,
when our fingers shyly and tenderly come together
like beads of the fig’s milk,
we will climb the mountain to bless all creatures
and together whisper: Amen . . . amen.

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

“. . . the international community decided to intervene negatively, and thus began the tragedy of Palestine . . .” (Hanan Ashrawi)

The UN passing Resolution 181, Nov. 29, 1947 (Stock photo online)

❶ . Ashrawi: Partition is a historical concession, and solidarity should be an active engagement
❷ . Egyptian power line malfunctions, parts of southern Gaza left without electricity

  • Background:  “The Energy Poverty Nexus In The Middle East And North Africa.” OPEC Energy Review

❸ . Israeli forces enter southern Gaza Strip, level lands
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA     
Nov. 29, 2016
In marking on Tuesday the 69th anniversary of the adoption of UN General Assembly Resolution 181 (the Partition Plan)  and the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, PLO Executive Committee Member Hanan Ashrawi said: “This anniversary marks an occasion in which the international community decided to intervene negatively, and thus began the tragedy of Palestine.”
___She said in a statement that “[a]lthough the Partition Resolution itself gives the international community the right and power to take action against any party that is responsible for attempts that constitute ‘any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression’ and alter ‘by force the settlement envisaged by [the] resolution,’ it has repeatedly failed to do so or to hold Israel to account.”       More . . .  
Related:  Jeremy R. Hammond. “The Myth of the Creation of Israel.” Foreign Policy Journal. Oct. 26, 2010.

Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 29, 2016
Parts of the southern Gaza Strip were left without electricity on Tuesday morning, after a main Egyptian line feeding southern Gaza malfunctioned hours after it was reported as fixed.
___Spokesman for the Gaza Electricity Company Muhammad Thabet confirmed to Ma’an that an Egyptian electricity line known as ‘Gaza 2’ malfunctioned on Tuesday morning, causing outages across the southern besieged coastal enclave.
___He pointed out that the line was fixed on Monday evening after it, along with an Israeli power line, had been damaged on Wednesday.
[. . . .]  Even at full capacity, Egyptian and Israeli electricity grids, together with Gaza’s sole power plant, fail to cover the Gaza Strip’s energy needs and only provide energy to Gaza’s inhabitants for eight hours each day.        More . . .

  • El-Katiri, Laura. “The Energy Poverty Nexus In The Middle East And North Africa.” OPEC Energy Review 38.3 (2014): 296-322.     SOURCE.

In part of the [Middle East and North Africa], the persistence of energy poverty does not stem from a lack of government attention, underinvestment, geographical factors or low incomes. Rather, it is driven by socio-political instability, whether short-term or ongoing. Little is known about the scope and duration of conflict-driven energy poverty, especially in the case of conflicts that result in years of instability and a lack of effective domestic institutions. The consequences must nevertheless be seen as severe for local populations, adding to socioeconomic neglect that in turn perpetuates and feeds into social conflict. The Arab–Israeli conflict is a case in point. The conflict caused hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees to settle in the Gaza strip and camps in Jordan and Lebanon, where many of them ended up spending decades in provisional housing, often with little if any access to electricity and sewage. There are no available data on electricity service rates in the West Bank and Gaza, but official Israeli reports estimated operating rates at the Gaza Strip’s sole power station’s 20 per cent of capacity at end of 2012, suggesting significant undersupply of Gazan households (Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2012***).
***Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2012. The humanitarian situation in Gaza. 18 November 2012.

(A journal article justifying Israel’s economic and humanitarian treatment of Gaza.)
Meisels, Tamar. “Economic Warfare – The Case Of Gaza.” Journal Of Military Ethics 10.2 (2011): 94-109.

Ma’an News Agency 
Nov. 29, 2016
Israeli military vehicles escorted several bulldozers into the southern Gaza Strip on Tuesday morning, where they leveled Palestinian agricultural fields.     ___Witnesses told Ma’an that five military bulldozers escorted by military vehicles crossed the border fence in the eastern outskirts of the town of Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, “and carried out earthworks near the border fence.”        More . . . 

The Egyptian power plant that provides electricity to parts of the southern Gaza, Jan. 29, 2016 (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)


“. . . One woman sighing, her body bears the marks of all their trudging . . .” (Jehan Bseiso)

Mohamed Abu Saada who was killed by the Israeli occupation east of Al Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza Strip, this evening (Photo: Facebook)

❶ 1 killed, 3 Injured by Israeli forces in Gaza clashes
❷ Israeli forces open live fire at Palestinian fishermen, shoot tear gas at youth in Gaza

  • Background: “The Vicious Cycle Of Building And Destroying: The 2014 War On Gaza.” Mediterranean Politics

❸ Gaza’s war victims receive Kuwait aid for reconstruction of homes
❹ POETRY by Jehan Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Ma’an News Agency      
Nov. 18, 2016
A Palestinian man Friday was killed and three others were injured by Israeli forces during clashes east of al-Bureij refugee camp near the “buffer zone” in the central Gaza Strip, and near the Nahal Oz border crossing in eastern Gaza.
___Ministry of Health Spokesman Ashraf al-Qidrah said Muhammad Abu Sada, 26, from al-Nusayrat in the central Gaza Strip was killed after Israeli soldiers shot him in the chest during the clashes near al-Bureij.
[. . . .] Abu Sada is the 239th Palestinian to be killed by an Israeli since the beginning of a wave of unrest across the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel in October 2015 . . .  More . . .       Related . . .   

Muhammad Abu Sada’s mother clutches her son’s dead body after he was shot dead by Israeli forces in Gaza, Nov. 18, 2016 (Photo: Fadi Thabet/Ma’an News Agency)

Ma’an News Agency  
Nov. 18, 2016
Israeli naval forces Friday opened live fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip and fired tear gas at a group of Palestinian youths near a military site in eastern Gaza city.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli naval boats deployed off the coast of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip opened live fire at Palestinian fishermen, forcing them to flee the area.
___Meanwhile, Israeli forces also fired tear gas canisters at a group of youth who had gathered near the Nahal Oz military site in eastern Gaza City.     More . . . 

  • Bouris, Dimitris. “The Vicious Cycle Of Building And Destroying: The 2014 War On Gaza.” Mediterranean Politics 20.1 (2015): 111-117.    Source.  

The 2014 summer war on Gaza (Operation Protective Edge) was the third in the last six years and in many ways the most significant one. According to official United Nations (UN) data, 2,205 Palestinians were killed, including at least 1,483 civilians, half of whom were women and children. In other words, more than 67 per cent of the total deaths were civilian. . . . The war also left 500,000 Palestinians displaced, which equates to one-third of the total population of the Gaza Strip. . .  Almost everyone traces the reasons for the war to the series of events that began with the kidnapping and killing of the three Israeli teenagers . . .  the real reasons . . . can be traced to the international community’s failed and myopic policies towards Gaza . . . .
___ Except for the large number of casualties, the summer war in Gaza was also distinctive because it highlighted the process of radicalization of Israeli society. Operation Protective Edge brought forward the gains in prominence and influence of anti-democratic and racist forces compared to previous wars. . . . .
[. . . .]   The ‘West Bank first’ strategy was initiated by the United States . . .  The aim of the ‘West Bank first’ strategy was to make sure that the Palestinian elite who were ‘acceptable’ to the West, led by Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad, would remain in power . . .  while the Gaza Strip remained isolated and blockaded by air, land and sea from Israel, with the quiet approval of Egypt and the international community.
[. . . . ]  Israeli restrictions on what is permitted in and out of Gaza are not new and they are the actual reason why previous reconstruction efforts were never completed in Gaza . . . . the Independent Commission for Human Rights estimated that Israel will end up receiving over 30 per cent of all funds that are brought for recovery and humanitarian assistance because of its control over the goods and services which are available in the West Bank and Gaza.     
[. . . .]
   Even before the latest war on Gaza, the local socioeconomic and humanitarian conditions were so critical that a 2012 UN report questioned whether Gaza would be habitable by the year 2020. A press release by Oxfam International also predicts that based on the current pace, it will take 50 years to rebuild Gaza . . . . The international community continues with its one-way policy of dealing with the symptoms of the crisis rather than focusing on its deeper causes.

Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
Nov. 19, 2016
At least 1340 homeowners in Gaza received more than $16 million in Kuwaiti aid directed to help the Gaza Strip recover from Israel’s 2014 war, the Palestinian government’s National Office for Reconstruction said on Saturday.
___According to this office, which is in charge of dispensing the Kuwaiti fund, the $16 million is the fourth payment from the fund bringing the total received so far by the victims of the war to $49 million out of a total of $75 million allocated for housing.         More . . .   


Little men, cross legged, trade war stories like boys trade baseball cards.

These are times ripe and full with want and promise never fulfilled.

This much is true:
Lost boys become lost men.

Too much water, too much blood dilutes history and
We always end up with less than what we started.

In Gaza,
there is no legacy under the rubble, not pride in long fires

There is a face at the window, sallow.

One woman sighing, her body bears the marks of all their trudging, thighs transformed to gallows and trenches.

Her hair shrouds the dead from both sides and her lap cradles aporias* generations can’t understand.

*A difficulty encountered in establishing the theoretical truth of a proposition, created by the presence of evidence both for and against it.

From: I REMEMBER MY NAME: Poetry by Samah Sabawi, Ramzy Baroud, Jehan Bseiso. Vacy Vlanzna, ed. London: Novum Publishing, 2016. Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . the community’s sense of identity and attachment to their lifestyle have not dissolved . . .” (Bogumila Hall)

Israeli military forces demolished the Bedouin village of Araqeeb, Oct. 9, 2016. (Photo from David Icke blog)

❶ Clashes break out in Bedouin village after Israeli police deliver demolition orders

  • Background:  “Bedouins’ Politics Of Place And Memory: A Case Of Unrecognised Villages In The Negev.” Nomadic Peoples

❷ Israeli army levels lands in Gaza ‘buffer zone’
❸ After morning demolition, two more homes razed in Jerusalem
. . . ❸ ― (a) Thirty Pals turn homeless as Israel destroys their home
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Ma’an News Agency    
Oct. 27, 2016
Clashes broke out on Wednesday between Israeli police and local youth in the Bedouin village of Bir Hadaj in Israel’s Negev desert, after Israeli police affixed demolition orders on some villagers’ homes.
___Locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained a number of people during the clashes, and that some Bir Hadaj residents were injured in the process.
[. . . .]  While Bedouins of the Negev are Israeli citizens, the villages unrecognized by the government have faced relentless efforts by the Israeli authorities to expel them from their lands and transferring them to government-zoned townships in order to make room for Jewish Israeli homes.       More . . . 

  • Hall, Bogumila. “Bedouins’ Politics Of Place And Memory: A Case Of Unrecognised Villages In The Negev.” Nomadic Peoples 18.2 (2014): 147-164.   Source. 

[. . . .] Under Ottoman rule in Palestine (1516–1917) many Bedouins started to cultivate land and used a customary system of property acquisitions to deal with land related issues. Residents of the Negev created their own legal mechanisms . . . .
[. . . .] . . . under the British Mandate in Palestine (1917–1948), the Bedouins enjoyed a relatively high degree of self-determination and control over the land. In 1921 the Land Ordinance was passed, giving Bedouins two months to register if they wanted to claim ownership of land. . .
[. . . .]   However, the community’s continuous presence in the Negev, the changing character of its lifestyle and the sense of attachment to the land seem to be ignored both in the Israeli legal framework and the dominant representations of the Bedouins and the region. Since the establishment of the state, Israel has denied the Arab Bedouins their indigenous land rights, depicted them as rootless nomads and characterised the Negev as historically uncultivated and uninhabited land. Today, there are approximately 200,000 Bedouins in the Negev. While half of them live in seven government-planned towns, and eleven villages recognised by Israel, the other half reside in villages not recognized by the state. This means that the Bedouin villages have the status of illegal settlements and thus are not marked on Israeli maps and are denied basic services, such as electricity, running water, public transportation and basic sanitation. The perceptions of the Bedouin minority are shaped by the language of criminalisation and orientalist discourse.
[. . . . ] Rendering historical Bedouin villages illegal and turning their land into state property was accompanied by a policy of transferring the rural community to government townships, where ‘they would modernise, develop new habits, and become accustomed to life in permanent. The first town designed for the Bedouin community, Tel Sheva, was built in 1969.
[. . . .]    Despite the state’s ongoing policies aimed at transforming the rural Bedouins into an ‘urban proletariat’, the community’s sense of identity and attachment to their lifestyle have not dissolved. Rather, as one of the Bedouin activists quoted in this article pointed out, the community is as determined as ever to protect their ‘essence’ and claim their rights as Israeli citizens.

Ma’an News Agency
Oct. 27, 2016
Israeli military vehicles entered into the besieged Gaza Strip “buffer zone” on Thursday and leveled lands south of the Bureij refugee camp, Palestinian sources said.
___Palestinian security sources and eyewitnesses reported that Israeli vehicles entered the central Gaza Strip early on Thursday morning and leveled lands dozens of meters within the blockaded Palestinian territory.
___They added that Israeli surveillance aircrafts were flying over the area.       More . . .

Jerusalem children whose homes Israelis destroyed, Oct. 25, 2016. (Photo: Days of Palestine)

❸  AFTER  MORNING  DEMOLITION,  TWO  MORE  HOMES  RAZED  IN  JERUSALEM      Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Oct. 26, 2016        After demolishing a building with four apartments in East Jerusalem’s Silwan neighborhood early Wednesday under the pretext of building without a permit, the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem demolished later in the day two more homes in Beit Hanina neighborhood under the same pretext, according to local sources.
___A large Israeli police force provided protection to bulldozers as they proceeded to demolish homes that belong to Rajabi and Siam families.       More . . .
Days of Palestine
Oct 26, 2016
Thirty Palestinian citizen became homeless on Wednesday after Israeli occupation police had destroyed their home in Jerusalem neighbourhood of Silwan.
___Early in the morning, the Israeli occupation police raided the Palestinian neighbourhood of Silwan and destroyed a multi-story Palestinian house.     More . . .