“. . . What sacred verses can explain Sniper fire . . .” (Samah Sabawi)

Soldiers
Israeli snipers seen on the border with Gaza during the Great March of Return, March 30, 2018. (IDF Spokesperson)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

|  UNRWA  DEPLORES  PALESTINE  REFUGEE  FATALITIES  AND  THE  DETERIORATING  HUMANITARIAN  CRISIS  IN  GAZA
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) deplored in a statement on Sunday the rise in fatalities among refugee students killed in the Israeli army crackdown on March of Return . . .  and the deteriorating humanitarian crisis.        [. . . .] This latest death brings to 13 the total number of UNRWA students who have been killed since 30 March . . .   Between 31 March and 30 September, UNRWA’s 22 health centers across the Gaza Strip have provided 4,104 consultations for injuries . . .  more than 770 of which related to children. The majority of these (86 per cent) have been gunshot injuries. . . for casualties of such violence and all involved in their care, the effects are lasting; rehabilitation is often long, costly and uncertain, said the UNRWA statement.   More . . .
. . . .Related:   PCHR:  “Two  Fishermen  Arrested  and  One  of  Them  Wounded”
. . . .Related:  Egypt  opens  Rafah  crossing  after  3  days  of  closure 
. . . .RelatedPalestinians  protest  high  unemployment  in  Gaza
|  WB:  IOF  ARREST  19  PALESTINIANS,  CONTINUE  COLLECTIVE  PUNISHMENT  POLICY
Israeli occupation forces have launched a large-scale campaign of arrests, taking at least 19 Palestinian civilians throughout the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem, including raids on dozens of Palestinian homes.     ___The arrests were concentrated in Tulkarm, Nablus and Qalqiliya, where the Israeli occupation forces launched raids and searches and closed roads as a form of collective punishment, in response to the operation in Barkan settlement on Sunday, in which two Israeli settlers were killed.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Settlers  destroy  40  olive  trees  in  village  near  Ramallah
. . . .Related:  Settlers  say  they  plan  to  take  over  Palestinian  land  to  open  a  road  for  themselves
. . . .Related: Israeli  army  prevents  farmers  from  harvesting  their  olive  crops  in  Tulkarm  area

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

|  ISRAELI  PM  SHOULD  KNOW,  ‘IT  TAKES  TWO,  NOT  THREE,  TO  TANGO!’
By Mahmoud el-Yousseph, Retired US Air Force Veteran
They say it takes two to tango, but if one of them is Benjamin Netanyahu, then you need three. . .  the Israeli Prime Minister saw fit few days ago to plead with the UN Secretary General to urge the international community to put pressure on Hamas in order to release the remains of two IOF soldiers killed in Gaza during the 2014 assault . . .  [. . . . ] Israel is currently holding the remains of 261 Palestinians. Those were people who were killed during the fighting, killed during midnight raids or at checkpoints.   More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .

The Jerusalem Fund for Education and Community Development  presents “THE  HISTORICAL  ROOTS  OF  CHRISTIAN  ZIONISM,  ITS  THEOLOGICAL  BASIS  AND  POLITICAL  AGENDA.”
October 24, 2018 12:00 PM.  Reverend Dr. Stephen Sizer is the founder and director of Peacemaker Trust, a charitable organization dedicated to peacemaking . . .   The Palestine Center, 2425 Virginia Avenue, NW; Washington, DC 20037 USA   Information . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . .

“GOD  FORSAKEN,”  By  SAMAH  SABAWI

  • In the aftermath of Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, codenamed Cast Lead in 2009, in which 1400 Palestinians were killed, some IDF soldiers wore t-shirts depicting a pregnant Palestinian woman with her belly in the crosshairs of a rife with the caption, “1 SHOT TWO KILLS.

What is a life worth?
A grain of earth
A drop of oil
A flag on a hill of holy soil
A cross…a star…a crescent moon…
Is it worth ending a life too soon?

What sacred verses can explain
Sniper fire. . .
And white phosphorus rain?
What Holy Scripture gave the command
“Thou shall wipe out they villages
And scorch their land”

And after the massacre
Did they lament?
Did they seek forgiveness?
Did they repent?
Did they try to sanctify their burdened souls
While besieging a people behind their walls
Or did they wear with pride their murderous skills:
A pregnant woman with a caption “1 SHOT 2 KILLS”

No rest for the less sacred, no safety, no light
No benediction no prayer no end in sight
No bread, no medicine no shelter no salvation
No angels can survive this holy Occupation

TELL ME THIS:
What is the life of a Palestinian worth,
In your God forsaken earth?

—From Palestine Chronicle.

“. . . Searching for a home between Haifa and Eternity . . .” (Ramzy Baroud)

354825C
“. . . minors. . . were held at Ofer military camp, near Ramallah, of whom four were detained during night raids from their homes, 20 taken from the streets . . .” (Photo: Ma’an News Agency, Oct. 5, 2018)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

DESPITE  HIGH  HOPES,  MERKEL  CALLS  VILLAGE’S  DEMOLITION  AN  ‘ISRAELI  DECISION’ 
Ever since Israel’s Supreme Court gave its final stamp of approval to demolish the village of Khan al-Ahmar last month, residents of the hamlet . . . have been hoping that international pressure . . . will delay or prevent the demolition. . .   [. . . .] Angela Merkel’s visit over the past two days provided some clarity regarding the possibility of German pressure on Israel on Khan al-Ahmar, and from the perspective of the villagers, things seem gloomy.     ___In a meeting held Thursday . . . [Merkel said] “This is an Israeli decision” . . .  in line with the Israeli government, which insists that foreign countries should not intervene in matters relating to the occupation.  More . . .
|  NETANYAHU  BANS  PUBLICATION  OF  ARCHIVE  MATERIAL  ON  DEIR  YASSIN  MASSACRE
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to sign an order extending the secrecy of the information stored in the security services’ archives from 70 to 90 years, including the Deir Yassin massacre carried out by Zionist gangs in the Nakba.     ___This came at the request of security agencies and other bodies to extend the confidentiality of this information to prevent the publication of part of the information during the current year.      More . . .
. . . Related . . .  The  Sabra  and  Shatila  Massacre:  New  Evidence

2016-635958137777584713-758
From PHOTO GALLERY: Deir Yassin. (Ahram Online, 2010)

|  THREE  PALESTINIANS,  INCLUDING  CHILD,  KILLED  AT  GAZA  BORDERS 
Three Palestinians were killed and dozens of others were injured, on Friday evening, as Israeli forces suppressed protests at the eastern borders of the besieged Gaza Strip.    ___The Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza confirmed that 12-year-old Fares Hafeth al-Sarsawi was shot and killed by Israeli forces in eastern Gaza City.    More . . .
. . . Related . . .   Committee:  Israel  Detained  35  Palestinian  Minors  In  September
. . . Related . . .   Israeli  forces  shoot,  injure  13-year-old  Palestinian  in  Kafr  Qaddum 
. . . Related . . .   Five  Palestinians  injured  during  Ramallah-area  clashes

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  ARE  THE  ULTIMATE  BATTLEGROUND  FOR  THE  INTERNATIONAL  COMMUNITY
Through U.S. diplomatic sanctions and dramatic cuts of financial aid to Palestine, Palestinians are being punished because the Palestinian Authority (PA) broke off diplomatic relations with the U.S.—in response to the illegal U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and its objections to Trump’s peace prospects for the region, referred to as the “deal of the century.” This retaliatory fury has not spared Palestinian refugees or . . .  (UNRWA), the agency that has served them for seventy years.     ___In fact, cutting U.S. support for the Agency ($125 million USD) is no more than a side effect of the retaliation against the PA, UNRWA, and Palestinian refugees, the intended targets of a campaign aiming to stop calling 5.5 million Palestinians “refugees” and annihilating the entities that support them. The goal is political: helping Israel resolve . . .  one of the most intractable issues in its dealings with the Palestinians: the right to return.     More . . .
. . . Related  US  WANTS  TO  ANNUL  THE  LEGITIMATE  PALESTINIAN  RIGHT  TO  RETURN

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“NAKBA,”  BY  RAMZY  BAROUD

The bones of my ancestors are the foundation
On which the mountains of Galilee stand.

Our ruggedness might not suit your taste
But we inherited the language of trees.

I am the root of a thousand olive trees
A legacy that will grow through my children

I will fight to preserve my essence until my son
Is old enough to inherit his grandmother’s Thoub*

She lost her childhood amidst dying peasants
Before walking the beaten road of exile and hope

Pleading at every checkpoint, she was the face in her photo
Searching for a home between Haifa and Eternity.

So, don’t talk to me about the Pharaoh: My
Father’s blood drenched the skin of Jesus

After the Romans caught him at a checkpoint
Hiding a recipe for revolution, and a love poem

And all the love letters of refugee women
Sent to men suspended on crosses

Overlooking the Martyrs Graveyard
Echoing the battle cries of Jaffa.

From I  REMEMBER  MY  NAME, ed. Vacy Vlanza. London: Novum Publishing, 2016.
*Dress, garment

“. . . Salaam upon you the day you were killed in the land of peace . . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

IMG_3219 - CopyHEBRON: Mother and sons climb into back window of their home
because Israel has closed their street 
to protect illegal settlers.
(Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 7, 2015)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

THE  PALESTINIAN  ECONOMY  IN  LIGHT  OF  THE  AMERICAN  SANCTIONS
Several reports will be on the table of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (AHCL) for coordinating international aid to the Palestinian People, which is chaired by Norway, when it meets in New York on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly meetings later this month.   ___The reports, from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Palestinian government, agree that 2018 is the worst for the Palestinian economy since Israel has re-occupied the Palestinian cities in the West Bank 16 years ago.   ___By the beginning of 2018, domestic and international forecasts estimated that growth in the Palestinian economy would range from 2.5% to 3%, reflecting a continuation of the slowdown in the Palestinian economy over the past five years . . .    More . . .
Related . . .   13,000  UNRWA  EMPLOYEES  IN  GAZA  PROTEST  AGAINST  CUTS

PLO  CONDEMNS  ISRAEL’S  MURDER  OF  SIX  PALESTINIANS  IN  THE  LAST  24  HOURS
The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) strongly condemned on Wednesday Israel’s murder of six Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and East Jerusalem in the last 24 hours, accusing Israeli forces of deliberately targeting the Palestinians.   ___“The deliberate murder of six Palestinians by Israeli forces in the last twenty-four hours is yet another escalation in the Israeli occupation’s brutality and inhumanity,” said PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi.   More . . .
Related . . .  PALESTINIANS  BID  LAST  FAREWELL  TO  2  YOUTHS  MURDERED  BY  ISRAEL  ARMY

ISRAELI  FORCES  INJURE  DOZENS  OF  PALESTINIAN  STUDENTS  IN  HEBRON
Dozens of Palestinian school students suffered injuries, on Wednesday, during clashes with Israeli forces in the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron.   ___Local sources said that Israeli forces provoked Palestinian students as they were on their way to school in Hebron City, resulting in violent clashes between students and Israeli forces. . . .  Israeli forces fired tear-gas bombs at the Palestinian students, causing dozens of students to suffer from tear-gas inhalation.    ___Palestinian students are regularly harassed by Israeli forces and settlers in Hebron City.   More . . .
Related . . .    15,000  JEWS  VISIT  HEBRON’S  IBRAHIMI  MOSQUE  AHEAD  OF  YOM  KIPPUR

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

‘OSLO  SOLD  US  OUT’:  YOUNG  PALESTINIANS  ON  THE  MOMENT  THAT  SHAPED  THEIR  GENERATION
In September 1993 the world celebrated what it thought was the beginning of the end of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.   ___The Oslo Accords was supposed to lead to a “comprehensive peace agreement” by 1999, and eventually, a Palestinian state . . .  ___Twenty-five years after Oslo. . .  a fair and just peace agreement for the Palestinians remains far out of reach. The dream of an independent Palestinian state even further.   [. . . .] “What does Oslo mean to me? For me, Oslo means that the Palestinian people did not get to decide their fate as a whole.” The words of Yasmin Abu Shakdim, a 22-year-old Sociology student from the city of Hebron, are expressive of a sentiment held by many Palestinian youth.   More . . .

7AMLEH:  GOOGLE  MAPS  ENDANGERING  PALESTINIAN  HUMAN  RIGHTS
The Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media released a new report entitled, “Mapping Segregation – Google Maps and the Human Rights of Palestinians”.   ___The report reveals new insights about how  Google Maps’ mapping process in the occupied Palestinian territories serves the interests of the Israeli government and contradicts Google’s commitment to international human rights frameworks.   More . . .

REMEMBERING  THE  SABRA  AND  SHATILA  MASSACRE
Between September 16 and 18, 1982, Palestinian refugees in Beirut’s Sabra and Shatila refugee camps were massacred. Estimates vary, but about 3,000 Palestinian refugees, mostly women, children, and the elderly were killed. The attack took place during Lebanon’s civil war, a few months after Israel’s invasion of the country.   More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . . 

CHRISTIAN  PEACEMAKER  TEAMS  PALESTINE
Christian Peacemaker Teams Palestine is a faith-based organization that supports Palestinian-led, non-violent, grassroots resistance to the Israeli occupation and the unjust structures that uphold it. By collaborating with local Palestinian and Israeli peacemakers and educating people in our home communities we strive to help create a space for justice and peace.   More . . .    Donate . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“I  DIDN’T  APOLOGIZE  TO  THE  WELL,”  MAHMOUD  DARWISH

I didn’t apologize to the well when I passed the well,
I borrowed from the ancient pine tree a cloud
and squeezed it like an orange, then waited for a gazelle
white and legendary. And I ordered my heart to be patient:
Be neutral as if you were not of me! Right here
the kind shepherds stood on air and evolved
their flutes, then persuaded the mountain quail toward
the snare. And right here I saddled a horse for flying toward
my planets, then flew. And right here the priestess
told me: Beware of the asphalt road and the cars
and walk upon your exhalation. Right here
I slackened my shadow and waited, I picked the tiniest
rock and stayed up late. I broke the myth and I broke.
And I circled the well until I flew from myself
to what isn’t of it. A deep voice shouted at me:
This grave isn’t your grave. So I apologized.
I read verses from the wise holy book, and said
to the unknown one in the well: Salaam upon you the day
you were killed in the land of peace, and the day you rise
from the darkness of the well alive!

—From THE  BUTTERFLY’S  BURDEN, by Mahmoud Darwish, Trans. Fady Joudah. Port Townsend, WA: Copper Canyon Press. 2007.

“ . . . I call upon them all to help Jerusalem . . .” Harun Hashim Rasheed

(The United Nations World Humanitarian Day was August 19. It is never too late to participate. See “Notices from Organizations” below.)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . . .   

EU,  UK  CONDEMN  ISRAEL’S  APPROVAL  OF  NEW  SETTLEMENT  UNITS
The European Union (EU) condemned the Israeli government’s approval of constructing some 1,000 new settlements units in the occupied West Bank.   ___The EU said in a statement, issued late Thursday, that “within the past two weeks the Israeli authorities have advanced plans and tenders for over two thousand settlement units in the West Bank including East Jerusalem. If implemented, these plans would further jeopardize the prospect of a contiguous and viable future Palestinian state.”   ___The EU stressed that it strongly opposes Israel’s settlement policy, saying that the policy is illegal under international law and an obstacle to peace.   More. . .
ASHRAWI:  ‘ISRAEL  SEEKS  NOT  ONLY  TO  DEFY  BUT  TO  DEFEAT  THE  WHOLE  WORLD’
Member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s (PLO) Executive Committee Hanan Ashrawi strongly condemned, on Thursday, “Israel’s expansion of illegal settlement enterprise on stolen Palestinian land.”   ___In her statement, Ashrawi said that “in response to media inquiries concerning the approval by Israel’s Higher Planning Committee of the Civil Administration to construct 2,000 illegal settlement units in the occupied West Bank, as well as the authorization of the Jerusalem ‘Municipality’ and the Israel Land Administration to build 20,000 settlement units in occupied Jerusalem.”   ___”In a blatant disregard for and violation of international law and conventions, as well as United Nations Security Council resolutions and the basic requirements of stability and peace, Israel persists in its illegal policies and oppressive measures in favor of its extremist settler population and colonial project.”    More. . .
See alsoErekat: “Israel’s Illegal Expansion Of Colonies, Direct Outcome of American Greed.”
HAMAS  PURSUES  TRUCE  WITH  ISRAEL,  BUT  NOT  ALL  FACTIONS  APPROVE     Flare-ups earlier this month between the Israeli army and Palestinian resistance factions in the Gaza Strip seemed likely to escalate into an expanded war were it not for the Egypt-brokered cease-fire in place. Instead, Hamas and Israel are close to reaching a genuine truce that could last for years. . .    ___A real truce, however, will require the PLO’s blessing and the participation of various factions besides Hamas. . . .    ___ Egypt and the UN are trying to mediate a long-term agreement between Israel and Hamas. The quest started July 26 with Nickolay Mladenov, the UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, visiting first the Gaza Strip to meet with Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh and then Israel, where he met with Israeli officials.   More. . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

ISRAEL  CONTINUES  TO  MISTREAT  RELATIVES  OF  THOUSANDS  OF  PALESTINIANS  HELD  ILLEGALLY  IN  ITS  TERRITORY
According to figures from the Israel Prison Service (IPS), on 30 June 2018 Israel was holding some 5,300 Palestinian residents of the West Bank as security detainees or prisoners in incarceration facilities. With the exception of Ofer Prison, all the facilities used to hold Palestinians are located inside Israel.    ___Residents of the West Bank who wish to visit their loved ones have to overcome bureaucratic hurdles in order to secure permission from the relevant authorities – the Civil Administration, the IPS and the Israel Security Agency (ISA). After permission is received, the visits themselves entail a long day of traveling due to countless inspections and protracted delays.   More. . .

JERUSALEM  IN  MAPS  from THE  APPLIED  RESEARCH  INSTITUTE  –  JERUSALEM  (ARIJ).     Presents a series of maps showing the changing boundaries of the Occupation in Jerusalem from 1948 to the present.   More. . .

PALESTINIAN  DANCER  FROM  BELGIUM  JAILED  BY  ISRAEL 
There is growing concern in Belgium for a Palestinian refugee and dancer who was detained by Israeli authorities as he tried to enter the occupied West Bank from Jordan a month ago.   ___Mustapha Awad, who was born in Ein al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon, has been granted refugee status and citizenship in Belgium. . . .   ___According to Samidoun, Awad appeared in court on 16 August, and was then returned to an Israeli interrogation center.   ___“My client was arrested at a frontier post for belonging to a terrorist organization, something he firmly denies,” Awad’s Belgian lawyer told media last Friday.    ___The 36-year-old Awad is the co-founder of Raj’een, a Palestinian folk dance group.   More. . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .

THE  PALESTINIAN  CAUSE  ON  WORLD  HUMANITARIAN  DAY     August 19, 2018
There are almost no limits to the pleasure of giving, and there is a great deal of satisfaction to be gained when it is related to taking happiness into the hearts of others. This is, without doubt, one of the benefits of involvement in charitable and humanitarian work. . . .    ___ The Palestinian cause remains one of the most prominent and important of contemporary issues. . . .   ___ The Palestinian cause in general and the siege of Gaza, in particular, are gaining the support of free people around the world, but more must be done. . . .   ___Humanitarian work, therefore, is an essential component of the struggle for Palestinian rights; for justice; and for peace.   More. . .

A LIMITED SAMPLE OF HUMANITARIAN CAUSES IN AND FOR PALESTINE
UNRWA USA  –  United Nations Relief and Works Agency
Charities & Non Profit Organizations In Gaza Palestine
Islamic Relief USA
Bright Stars of Bethlehem  Donate
KINDER USA – Kids in Need of Development, Education, and Relief
Palestine Institute Of Biodiversity And Sustainability 

“POEM  TO  JERUSALEM,”  BY  HARUN  HASHIM  RASHEED  
For the sake of a city that’s imprisoned,
for its Dome and Aqsa Mosque,
for the annihilated sanctuary
where Muhammad’s feet once stood,
for all this city has endured,
and for all it has preserved,
for Mary and Jesus,
for all the beings she has known,
for my city’s sake,
raped and abused,
on its wounded brow
God’s words are effaced.

I call on all our dead
and all our living
with verses from the Bible
if only they could hear
with verses from the Quran
in the name of God
calling the young among them and the very old
calling them from my depths
to every brave fighter
I tell them the struggle is for Jerusalem
I call on them to resolve and have faith
tell them how Jerusalem’s sanctity is wounded
I call upon them all to help Jerusalem
She cannot wait any longer,
she overflows with grief.

From the Atlantic to the Arabian Gulf
I call upon you in the name of God
with the purity of anger I beseech you
for the city with the humiliated eyes
I call you in your name,
I call my Arab people.
―translated by Sharif Elmusa and Naomi Shihab Nye

“. . . I shall sing in spite of fences . . .” (Fouzi El-Asmar)

❶ MOFA: Preliminary death penalty bill is state terrorism

  • Background: “Israel and Its Messianic Right: Path Dependency and State Authority in International Conflict.” International Studies Quarterly.

. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) [PCHR] Weekly report: Israel’s systematic crimes in the oPt
. . . . . ❶― (ᴃ) Serious injury by IOF gunfire north of Ramallah
. . . . . ❶― (ᴄ) The famous UNRWA staffer killed by Israel’s security check

❷ PA signs 22 international treaties and agreements
❸ Opinion/Analysis: There is no status quo, only Greater Israel
❹ POETRY by Fouzi El-Asmar
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ MOFA:  PRELIMINARY  DEATH  PENALTY  BILL  IS  STATE  TERRORISM          Palestine News Network – PNN
Jan. 4, 2018 ― The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates on Thursday condemned the Israeli Knesset’s approval of the preliminary death penalty bill for the Palestinian prisoners, considering it an extension of the Israeli authorities’ escalation of its arbitrary measures against Palestinian citizens and its grave violations of international law, international conventions, protocols and the principles of human rights.
___“This bill follows a series of racist laws which deepen the rights’, the extreme rights’, and the settlers’ control of the Israeli government, and extends the racist regime of apartheid that the occupation authorities continue to establish and expand in the Palestinian land, in a clear and explicit targeting of Palestinian land and the national and humanitarian Presence in Palestine,” the ministry said in a statement.   MORE . . .

MENDELSOHN, BARAK.
“ISRAEL  AND  ITS  MESSIANIC  RIGHT:  PATH  DEPENDENCY  AND  STATE  AUTHORITY  IN  INTERNATIONAL  CONFLICT.” 
INTERNATIONAL  STUDIES  QUARTERLY, vol. 60, no. 1, Mar. 2016, pp. 47-58.
[. . . .] The religious settler movement was born in the aftermath of Israel’s victory in the 1967 war, which wrested the Palestinian-populated West Bank from Jordanian control. . . .  This movement viewed the struggle to keep the West Bank under Jewish sovereignty as pertinent to the process of redemption; leaders prioritized occupying the land above all other values, including the state’s authority or even the Jewish principle of the sanctity of life.
___The messianic movement’s campaign involved numerous and significant extralegal actions that challenged state authority. Prominent among them was the establishment of unauthorized settlements in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in an effort to commit the state to these territories and fight the government’s “temptation” to reach territorial compromises.
___In addition, movement members launched violent attacks on Palestinians and their property and mosques, as well as on representatives of the Israeli state, including the assassination of Prime Minister Rabin. Granted, the movement also engaged in modes of resistance that are accepted as legal and legitimate in a democratic country . . . .
[. . . .] A second mechanism concerns a shift in the balance between the primacy of the state and the ideological positions of Jewish Messianism. The erosion of state primacy in a country where illegalism has always been part of the political culture gradually diminished state capacity to promote the rule of law in the face of the messianic challenge. The state’s inability (and, at certain periods, its disinterest) to reassert its authority created a severe legitimacy crisis. . . .  Illegalism in support of resistance to territorial compromise became increasingly accepted, even when it meant fighting the authority of the state.
___Empowering the messianic Right presents a greater challenge to state authority than delegation to a nonideological nonstate actor would, because religion can offer a competing principle for organizing politics. . . .      SOURCE . . . 

.  .  .  .  . ❶ ―  (ᴀ)  [PCHR]  WEEKLY  REPORT:  ISRAEL’S  SYSTEMATIC  CRIMES  IN  THE  oPT
Palestine News Network – PNN
Jan. 4, 2018 ―    PCHR/ Gaza/  During the reporting period (28 December 2017- 03 January 2018): Israeli forces escalated the excessive use of force in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
___*Two Palestinian civilians, including a child, were killed, in the West Bank and Gaza Strip; *89 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children, were wounded in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, *53 of them were hit with live bullets, 23 were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets, and 13 were hit with tear gas canisters.  *Nine civilians, including 7 children and a woman, were arrested in a protest in the West Bank.  *Israeli forces conducted 69 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and a limited one was conducted in the southern Gaza Strip.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  . ❶ ―  (ᴃ)  SERIOUS  INJURY  BY  IOF  GUNFIRE  NORTH  OF  RAMALLAH 
The Palestinian Information Center
Jan. 4, 2018 ―  Palestinian youth on Thursday afternoon was seriously wounded by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) who shot him with a live bullet in the head during clashes that erupted in Deir Nitham town west of Ramallah after the funeral of the Palestinian martyr Musab al-Tamimi.
___The injured Palestinian man was transferred to hospital as his injury was described as serious.
___The head of the local council of Deir Nitham, Ahmad al-Tamimi, told WAFA news agency that IOF soldiers blocked the funeral of martyr al-Tamimi, assaulted  participants and showered them with tear gas canisters and stun grenades.    MORE . . .
RELATED:   Soldiers attack funeral of youth they shot and killed the day before.     Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA, Jan. 4, 2018.
.  .  .  .  .  ❶ ―  (ᴄ)  THE  FAMOUS  UNRWA  STAFFER  KILLED  BY  ISRAEL’S  SECURITY  CHECK
The Palestinian Information Center
Jan. 4, 2018 ―The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) is responsible for the death of the famous UNRWA staffer Abdel Fattah al-Sibakhi, 65, after banning him from crossing the Beit Hanoun checkpoint, when he was still in the middle of his chemotherapy treatment for lung cancer.
___He had been working for 30 years at UNRWA’s Procurement and Warehousing Unit in occupied Jerusalem until he was promoted to a director, thus obtaining an almost permanent residency in Jerusalem and the West Bank.
___Al-Sibakhi died a few days ago after being denied access to the Israeli-controlled Beit Hanoun crossing for chemical treatment and urgent medical tests under the pretext of security checks.     MORE . . . 
❷ PA  SIGNS  22  INTERNATIONAL  TREATIES  AND  AGREEMENTS  
Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom) 
Jan. 3, 2018 ― Palestine has joined 22 international conventions and treaties, the Palestinian Authority (PA) announced today.
___In a statement, the PA said that the move was made “to strengthen the legal status of the State of Palestine on a global scale,” stressing that “adopting the international law is the only way to achieve the Palestinians’ legitimate national rights.”
___On the Israeli decision to annex the West Bank to Israel’s sovereignty, the PA noted that the decision is “a declaration of war against the Palestinian people.”
___The Palestinian government also noted to the US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel saying that it is “devoid of any legitimacy.”    MORE . . .  
❸ Opinion/Analysis:  THERE  IS  NO  STATUS  QUO,  ONLY  GREATER  ISRAEL        +972 Magazine
Jan. 3, 2018 ― Over the past few years, analysts have been using the term “creeping annexation” to describe Israel’s land grabbing, segregationist policies in the West Bank. But over the past few days, the country’s leaders have been openly signaling that annexation need no longer creep. It is the new game in town.
___On Sunday night, Likud’s Central Committee, the body responsible for updating the party’s constitution, unanimously passed a resolution to extend Israeli sovereignty to all West Bank settlements, effectively annexing them to­­ Israel.
___The Likud decision received a significant boost from Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, who announced Wednesday that beginning next week, all new pieces of government-supported legislation would include a short directive on how they are to be applied to Israeli settlements. The move, Shaked said Wednesday morning at a Knesset committee hearing, will help implement government policy in the settlements and “normalize life in Judea and Samaria.”
[. . . .] Taken together,  Likud and Shaked’s decisions are important for both their practical and psychological implications: they are changing the paradigm. If, until now, annexation was openly championed only by those on the far-right, today it has become a fundamental tenet of Israel’s ruling party, and the Justice Ministry is continuing to lay the groundwork for its future implementation.       MORE . . .   

“I  SHALL  SING,”  BY  FOUZI  EL-ASMAR
I shall create
out of the darkness of my jail
my dawn out of the jaws of hatred
my destiny.
I shall sing
the wind
the sun
the flowers
the spring.
I shall sing
in spite of fences
in spite of jailers
in spite of hatred.

From: El-Asmar, Fouzi. THE  WIND-DRIVEN  REED  AND  OTHER  POEMS. Washington, D.C.: Three Continents Press, 1979.  Available from Amazon.
For more than fifty years, FOUZI EL-ASMAR was one of the most important public intellectuals of the Palestinian liberation struggle. Born in Haifa in 1937, he grew up in a Palestinian area of present-day Israel. In 1958, he became a member of the editorial board of the literary monthly Al-Fajr and in 1966 he became editor of the Arabic magazine Hadha Al-Alam. In 1979, after attending university in the US and graduate school in the UK, he became the managing editor of the London-based international newspaper, Asharq Al-Awsat.   More . . .

“. . . fed up with humiliation of living there. . .” (Harun Hashim Rasheed)

Mideast-Gaza-Trapped-_sham-1-512x349
Monday, Aug. 4, 2014, a Palestinian woman passes by rescuers inspecting the rubble of destroyed houses following Israeli strikes in Rafah refugee camp, southern Gaza Strip. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

❶ On 10th anniversary of siege, Gaza reaching humanitarian and political breaking point
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) Gaza braces itself for ‘collapse’ after Israel approves reduction of electricity supply
. . . . . ❶― (ᴃ) PLO Ashrawi condemns Netanyahu’s call to shut down UNRWA

  • BACKGROUND:  One million Palestinian refugees in 8 Gaza Strip camps

❷ MOH warns of stopping heart catheter in Gaza

  • BACKGROUND: Shalev G. “A Doctor’s Testimony: Medical Neutrality and the Visibility of Palestinian Grievances in Jewish-Israeli Publics.”
  • HISTORICAL NOTE:  Zunes, Stephen. “The Gaza War, Congress and International Humanitarian Law.”

❸ POETRY by Harun Hashim Rasheed (b. 1927, Gaza)
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ON  10TH  ANNIVERSARY  OF  SIEGE,  GAZA  REACHING  HUMANITARIAN  AND  POLITICAL  BREAKING  POINT  
Ma’an News Agency
Chloe Benoist
June 15, 2017        As the Gaza Strip marked the ten-year anniversary of Israel’s siege of the small Palestinian enclave on Thursday, the humanitarian situation has continued to alarm rights groups, which have denounced the “inhuman conditions unparalleled in the modern world.”
___Gaza, which has often been compared to an “open air prison” for its 1.9 million inhabitants crowded into 365 square kilometers, has suffered from a decade of isolation and deprivation, made all the worse by three devastating Israeli military operations, and persistent intra-Palestinian political strife.
___The recent decision by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to request that Israel reduce its supply of electricity to the Gaza Strip has made many fear that the situation in Gaza could soon reach a political and humanitarian breaking point with unforetold consequences.     MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) GAZA  BRACES  ITSELF  FOR  ‘COLLAPSE’  AFTER  ISRAEL  APPROVES  REDUCTION  OF  ELECTRICITY  SUPPLY
Ma’an News Agency 
June 12, 2017       The Israeli security cabinet has approved a 40 percent reduction in Israel’s electricity supply to the besieged Gaza Strip, where Palestinians are already coping with a crippling power crisis and daily, hours-long blackouts, according Israeli media reports.
___While Gaza’s electricity company said it had not received an official order regarding the impending power cut, it called upon Palestinians in Gaza to prepare for the worst, while human rights groups urged Israel to reconsider the move — expected to have immediate and disastrous effects on the medical sector in particular.
___The approval came after Israeli authorities announced plans to make the cuts last month, upon request of the Palestinian Authority (PA) in occupied West Bank, which foots Gaza’s monthly electricity bill from Israel, by subtracting from taxes collected by Israel on behalf of the PA.     MORE . . .     
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) PLO  ASHRAWI  CONDEMNS  NETANYAHU’S  CALL  TO  SHUT  DOWN  UNRWA         
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
June 16, 2017         PLO Executive Committee Member Hanan Ashrawi strongly condemned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s demand to shut down the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).
___”Netanyahu’s call to disband UNRWA is the epitome of arrogance, particularly since Israel itself is responsible for creating the Palestinian refugee problem,” Said Ashrawi in a press statement issued on Thursday.
___The statement said Israeli government bears a moral and legal responsibility for Palestinian refugees and the serious injustices of the past.
___“It should not be permitted to defame or slander UNRWA which still remains a lifeline for millions of Palestinian refugees residing in Occupied Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria, providing them with essential services, assistance and opportunities for work, growth and development.”

  • BACKGROUND:   ONE  MILLION  PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  IN  8  GAZA  STRIP  CAMPS          May 16, 2013    Alray-Palestinian Media Agency      The Gaza Strip is home to more than 1.1 million registered refugees, of which more than half a million live in the eight refugee camps established by UNRWA.
    ___The refugee camps have one of the highest population densities in the world.  The blockade on Gaza has had a devastating impact on refugees across the Gaza Strip, including those living in camps.  Unemployment continues to be at unprecedented levels particularly affecting young people in Gaza.     MORE . . .

gaza map❷ MOH  WARNS  OF  STOPPING  HEART  CATHETER  IN  GAZA
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency    
June 15, 2017       The head of cardiac catheterization at Al-Shifa Medical Compound, Mohammad Habib, warned that the cardiac catheter service will be stopped in the coming weeks if the basic items are not supplied, confirming that the department uses only sterile tools.
___Habib said that many of the basic types were run out, such as pharmacological blockers, pacemaker of various types, and catheterization of the arteries.
[. . . .] He pointed out that the cases are now transferred to treatment abroad, such as catheter therapy for the heart and peripheral arteries, due to stopping the remittances.    [. . . .] the heart catheter section at Al-Shifa carries out 1500 operations every year, an average of 150 operations a month between diagnosis and treatment.       MORE . . .

  • BACKGROUND: Shalev G. “A Doctor’s Testimony: Medical Neutrality and the Visibility of Palestinian Grievances in Jewish-Israeli Publics.” Culture, Medicine & Psychiatry [serial on the Internet]. (2016, June), 40(2): 242-262.     Abstract:   This paper follows the testimony of Izzeldin Abuelaish, a Palestinian physician who bears witness to his experiences working, living, and suffering under Israeli rule. He presents his story as a doctor’s story, drawing on his identity as a medical professional to gain credibility and visibility and to challenge the limited legitimacy of Palestinian grievances. . . .  at once recounts the suffering and loss endured by the Palestinian people and also struggles to negotiate the values associated with being a ‘‘reliable’’ witness. . .   In comparison with most Palestinian narratives, Abuelaish’s testimony achieved an extremely rare degree of visibility and sympathy, a phenomenon that calls out for analysis. I identify the boundaries that typically render Palestinian grievances invisible to Israeli publics and suggest how medicine’s self-proclaimed ethos of neutrality served as a channel for crossing them. . . .   the political possibilities and limitations of medical witnessing to render suffering visible and arouse compassion toward those construed as a dangerous/enemy Other.        SOURCE:     RELATED . . .

  • HISTORICAL NOTE:  Zunes, Stephen. “The Gaza War [2008-2009], Congress and International Humanitarian Law.”  Middle East Policy, vol. 17, no. 1, Spring2010, pp. 68-81.       Support for the impending war began months earlier, in June 2008, when 77 senators — including future Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — signed a letter . . .  to President George W. Bush defending Israeli air strikes on the heavily populated Gaza Strip. The letter also urged the Bush administration to block any UN Security Council resolution critical of Israel, claiming that UN opposition to Israeli attacks against crowded urban areas constituted a refusal to “acknowledge Israel’s right to self-defense.”      ___An almost identical letter in the House, drafted by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD). . .  received 268 signatures. Americans for Peace Now (APN), a liberal Zionist group, warned that these letters were designed to build “a defense, in advance, for a large Israeli military offensive in Gaza.” APN, among others, also noted that such an Israeli offensive against the Gaza Strip would likely result in large-scale civilian casualties.
    ___In apparent anticipation of such a scenario, the House of Representatives had passed a resolution that March, during an upsurge of fighting between Hamas militiamen and Israeli forces, which claimed, “Those responsible for launching rocket attacks against Israel routinely embed their production facilities and launch sites amongst the Palestinian civilian population, utilizing them as human shields.” . . . .   However, human-rights groups monitoring the situation at that time noted that, while Hamas had failed to take all feasible precautions to protect civilians in the densely populated Gaza Strip, they found no instances of the use of human shields by Hamas. (Footnote: Interview, Joe Stork, Middle East division, Human Rights Watch, June 18, 2008.)       ARTICLE . . .

gaza2008
Government ministry buildings destroyed by an Israeli airstrike on December 30, 2008 in Gaza City, Gaza Strip. (Photo Credit: Abid Katib/Getty Images)

“LET  IT  BE  KNOWN,”  BY  HARUN  HASHIM  AL RASHID (b. 1927, Gaza)
Let it be known:
there will be no peace.
because the lodgers in the tents
have become fed up with humiliation of
living there,
become tired of suffering, misery and illness,
bored with the death creeping in their bones,
sick of life itself,
because they are homeless,
walking in darkness.
–Source
 About HARUN HASHIM AL RASHID

 

 

“. . . Whenever a child goes silent in Al Yarmouk Camp. . .” (Maya Abu Al-Hayyat)

Maya Abu Al-Hayyat
Maya Abu Al-Hayyat

From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PLO: PALESTINIAN REFUGEES IN SYRIA FACE IMMINENT THREAT FROM FIGHTING
June 25, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Some 150,000 Palestinian refugees in four camps on the outskirts of Damascus face severe threats due to ongoing fighting in the Syrian conflict, a PLO official said Thursday. . . .
____The majority of Palestinians in those camps are originally from Yarmouk refugee camp, which has been on the front-line of the Syrian conflict and severely affected by fighting.
(More. . .)

From ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
US CONGRESS MEMBERS DEMAND END TO ISRAEL’S “CRUEL” ABUSES OF PALESTINIAN CHILDREN
Ali Abunimah
June 24, 2015
In rare defiance of the stifling pro-Israel consensus in the US capital, members of Congress are calling on the Obama administration to push Israel to end its systematic abuses of Palestinian children.
____Congresswoman Betty McCollum released a letter on Tuesday co-signed by 18 other members of the House of Representatives urging Secretary of State John Kerry to “prioritize the human rights of Palestinian children living in the Occupied West Bank in the bilateral relationship with the Government of Israel.”
(More. . .)

From KINDERUSA
THE INHUMANITY OF YARMOUK
Dalell Mohmed
April 15, 2015
“Yarmouk is a place which has descended even further into unimaginable levels of inhumanity.”– United Nations Relief Works Agency spokesperson Chris Gunness
____Formed in 1957 for Palestinians who fled across the border after the creation of Israel in 1948, Yarmouk quickly became home to the largest Palestinian refugee community in Syria. Located 8 kilometers from the center of Damascus, it is 2.1 square kilometers in size.
(More. . .)

Palestinian residents of Yarmouk waiting for food
Palestinian residents of Yarmouk waiting for food

From INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
UNRWA LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO FUND GAZA CHILDREN EDUCATION
June 25, 2015
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) launched a global Ramadan campaign to raise funds to support the education of thousands of Palestinian refugee children in UNRWA schools in the besieged Gaza Strip.
(More. . .)

From MONDOWEISS
WHAT I LEARNED CROSSING THE QALANDIA CHECKPOINT
Léa Georgeson Caparros
June 23, 2015
The turnstile jams.
____It rattles uselessly as I try to move forward again. I start getting nervous. I manage to manoeuvre out of the gate and back into the holding cage. My companions are still being held at the previous turnstile from which I’m separated by a metal detector. I dare not go back for fear of breaking some unspoken rule.
____There is no indication anywhere of what to do other than your lack of alternatives. You are simply herded through cages and turnstiles like cattle. . . .
(More. . .)

“CHILDREN,” BY MAYA ABU AL-HAYYAT
Whenever I see an image of a child’s hands
sticking out of the rubble of a collapsed building
I check the hands of my three children
I count the fingers of their hands, the toes on their feet,
I check the numbers of teeth in their mouths, every
last hair in each finely-marked wee eyebrow.

Whenever a child goes silent in Al Yarmouk Camp
I turn up the volume on the TV, the songs on the radio,
I pinch my three children
to make them cry and squirm with life.

Whenever my sore heart gets hungry at Qalandia checkpoint
I comfort-eat, I
emotionally over-eat, craving excessive salt
as if I could then somehow say: enough, block out
the salt spark of the tears everyone around me is crying.
―Translated by Liz Lochhead

Maya Abu Al-Hayyat is a prize-winning author of novels, poetry, and short stories. Born in Lebanon, she has a degree in Civil Engineering from Al-Najah University in Nablus, the largest Palestinian university, and lives in Ramallah.
From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available From Amazon.com.
Maya Abu Al-Hayyat reading one of her poems
About Qalandia checkpoint

Children at play in Gaza
Children at play in Gaza