“. . .strangers with their rifles’ muzzles . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

IMG_3215 - edited resized
Israeli Occupation Forces bunker and watchtower in Central Hebron. (Photo: Harold Knight, November 7, 2015)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY
|  ISRAEL  DEMOLISHES  HOME  IN  JERUSALEM  –  143  DEMOLISHED  IN  2018  
Israeli bulldozers demolished a Palestinian-owned house in Qalandiya north of occupied East Jerusalem in the central West Bank, on Wednesday morning.    ___Owner Hamzeh al-Mughrabi told Ma’an that Israeli police forces escorted municipality staff into Qalandiya, where they surrounded the house, emptied and evacuated residents before starting the demolition.    ___Al-Mughrabi added that the Shweiki family of 6 members, including a man with disability, live in the 100-square meter house.    More . . .
~~ Jerusalem  mayor  plans  to  reduce  the  sound  of  mosque  loudspeakers     More . . .
|   WEEKLY  REPORT  ON  ISRAELI  HUMAN  RIGHTS  VIOLATIONS  IN  THE  OCCUPIED  PALESTINIAN  TERRITORY  (20–26  DECEMBER  2018)
Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against the peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip.     ___4 Palestinian civilians, including a child, and a person with mobility impairment were killed.   142 civilians, including 30 children, 2 women, 2 journalists, and a paramedic, were wounded; the injury of 2 of them was reported serious.    ___A child was killed and 5 civilians were wounded, including a Journalist, in the West Bank.    ___Israeli forces conducted 66 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 2 limited incursions into the northern Gaza Strip.   More . . .
~~  Scores  of  Palestinians  injured  by  Israeli  bullet  fire     More . . .
~~  Civilians  kidnapped,  homes  ransacked  by  Israeli  army    More . . .
|  ISRAEL  AND  THE  UNITED  STATES  FORMALLY  QUIT  UNESCO
More than a year after announcing their withdrawal from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Israel and the United States’ decision officially went into effect at the last second of December 31, 2018.   ___UNESCO was the first UN body to grant full membership to Palestine in 2011, which led the Obama administration to stop paying its annual contributions. In 2017, the UN heritage agency passed a resolution designating the Tomb of Patriarchs in  Hebron  as  a  Palestinian  World  Heritage  Site. The decision was opposed by the Jewish community because of the holy cave’s significance in Judaism.     More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION
NOT  WELCOME  IN  HEBRON:  ITS  ORIGINAL  RESIDENTS  AND  BREAKING  THE  SILENCE
Jonathan Cook
Ido Even-Paz switched on his body camera as his tour group decamped from the bus in Hebron. The former Israeli soldier wanted to document any trouble we might encounter in this, the largest Palestinian city in the occupied West Bank.    ___It was not Hebron’s Palestinian residents who concerned him, however. He was worried about fellow Israelis—Jewish religious extremists and the soldiers there to guard them—who have seized control of much of the city center [. . . .]  ___For more than 15 years, Israel has forbidden entry for Palestinians to what was once Hebron’s main throroughfare and central shopping area along Shuhada Street. Now it has been rebranded in Hebrew as King David Street, and declared what the army terms a “sterilized area.” The closure severs the main transport routes for Palestinians between north and south Hebron.    ___Most of the Palestinian inhabitants have been driven from the city center by endless harassment and attacks by settlers, bolstered by arrests and night raids conducted by the army, says Even-Paz.    More . . .
~~  Gaza  march  leader  to  conscientious  objectors:  ‘Turn  your  words  into  weapons’    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY

“STORY  OF  A  CITY,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
There was a blue city
that dreamt of foreigners wandering
Around and spending their money
day after day.

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

From: Al-Qasim, Samih.  SADDER  THAN  WATER.  New  and  Selected  Poems.  Trans. Nazih Kasis and Adina Hoffman. Jerusalem: Ibis Editions, 2008. Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . Resist the colonialist’s onslaught . . .” (Dareen Tatour)

❶ Israeli bulldozers demolish structures northeast occupied Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) ‘It took them 10 minutes to destroy what I built in a lifetime’

  • Background: “The Geopolitics of Neighbourhood: Jerusalem’s Colonial Space Revisited.” Geopolitics.

❷ Saudi Arabia warns of ‘serious implications’ should US recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Turkey to cut ties with Israel if Jerusalem is recognized as capital of Israel
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) IAF [Jordan] rejects US intent to relocate embassy to Occupied Jerusalem
❸ Israeli forces storm Palestinian cities and arrest 10 Palestinians
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) How Israel is digitally policing Palestinian minds
❹ POETRY by Dareen Tatour

` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAELI  BULLDOZERS  DEMOLISH  STRUCTURES  NORTHEAST  OCCUPIED  JERUSALEM 
The Palestinian Information Center
December 5, 2017 ― Israeli heavy bulldozers razed on Tuesday morning a number of Palestinian facilities under construction in Shufat refugee camp northeast of Occupied Jerusalem at the pretext of lacking construction permit.
___The spokesman of Fatah Movement in Shufat refugee camp, Thaer Fasfous, said that Israeli forces, in large numbers and escorted by four bulldozers, raided the refugee camp in the early morning, besieged an under-construction building and started knocking it down, according to Quds Press.  MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  ‘IT  TOOK  THEM  10  MINUTES  TO  DESTROY  WHAT  I  BUILT  IN  A  LIFETIME’   
+972 Magazine
Orly Noy
December 4, 2017 ― The path to the Rajbi family home in East Jerusalem’s Beit Hanina neighborhood, or what was their home until two weeks ago, is difficult to find, even with the help of navigation apps such as Waze. After driving off the main road, the half-paved alleyways blend into one another in a maze of dirt tracks. Three of them bear the exact same name. After a few attempts to find the house, Samir, brother of Issam Rajbi whose former home we are looking for, comes to our rescue. In East Jerusalem, this is not an especially effective milestone; the dirt mounds and remains of demolished homes are pile up on the way, every few hundred meters.   MORE . . .

Yacobi, Haim and Wendy Pullan.
“THE  GEOPOLITICS  OF  NEIGHBOURHOOD:  JERUSALEM’S  COLONIAL  SPACE  REVISITED.”
Geopolitics, vol. 19, no. 3, Jul-Sep2014, pp. 514-539.
[. . . .] . . . significant spatial turning point in Israel’s geopolitical conditions started after June 1967 when Israel occupied East Jerusalem . . .  the Israeli government unilaterally annexed all of East Jerusalem, expanded the municipal boundaries on Palestinian territory, and applied Israeli law to all of the city . . .  beyond Israeli rhetoric representing Jerusalem as a unified city, the planning policies have contributed to the paradigm of a colonial city. Both state and city pursue . . .  Judaisation: the expansion of Jewish political, territorial, demographic, and economic control to all parts of the city. This has been explicitly manifested by Israeli leaders, including David Ben Gurion, whose revealing words were uttered a few days after the end of the 1967 war:

“Jews should be brought to East Jerusalem at any cost. Thousands of
Jews should settle soon. Jews will agree to settle in East Jerusalem,
even in shacks. We should not wait for the construction of proper
neighbourhoods. The most important thing is that there will be there Jews.”

Israel has used its military might and economic power to relocate borders and boundaries, grant and deny rights and resources, shift populations, and reshape the occupied territories for the purpose of ensuring Jewish control. In the case of East Jerusalem, two complementary strategies have been implemented by Israel; the massive construction of an outer ring of Jewish neighbourhoods . . .  and the containment of Palestinian development, implemented through housing demolition, the limited issuing of building permits. . .  and the prevention of immigration to the city. . . .  Palestinians have become isolated in their own neighbourhoods, cut off from each other as well as from Israelis.
[. . . .] Ideally, the urban sphere, in its density and diversity, could serve as a space that is “open to flows of people”. Such a liberal perspective relies heavily on the belief that the city has the potential for the production of an “enabling space” that might disrupt the existing hierarchies and boundaries of ethnic and class structures. Yet . . .  such a view is only partial in the context of Jerusalem, which is divided not only along the Jewish/Arab partition but also according to other ethnic divisions that stem from the nature of the Israeli settler society . . . .    SOURCE . . .

SAUDI  ARABIA  WARNS  OF  ‘SERIOUS  IMPLICATIONS’  SHOULD  US  RECOGNIZE  JERUSALEM  AS  ISRAEL’S  CAPITAL   
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
December 5, 2017 – Saudi Foreign Ministry Tuesday warned of serious implications should the US recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, according to the Saudi Press Agency, WAS.
___It quoted an official source at the Foreign Ministry expressing Saudi Arabia’s “grave and deep concern” over media reports that US President Donald Trump plans to make such recognition and relocate the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
___The source added that Saudi Arabia “views the US step, if taken, to be in contradiction of the principle of not affecting final status negotiations, and contradicts international resolutions that emphasize the historical and firm rights of the Palestinian people regarding Jerusalem, which cannot be changed, nor can an attempt to impose a new reality upon it be made.”     MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  TURKEY  TO  CUT  TIES  WITH  ISRAEL  IF  JERUSALEM  IS  RECOGNIZED  AS  CAPITAL  OF  ISRAEL  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
December 5, 2017 ― Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened on Tuesday to cut ties with Tel Aviv if the US administration recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
___Erdogan said in a press statement that the Organization of Islamic Cooperation will hold a meeting in Istanbul to mobilize the Islamic world through important activities in case US President Donald Trump proceeds with this step.   MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴃ)  IAF  [Jordan]  REJECTS  US  INTENT  TO  RELOCATE  EMBASSY  TO  OCCUPIED  JERUSALEM 
The Palestinian Information Center 
December 5, 2017 ― Jordan’s Islamic Action Front (IAF) party has voiced its rejection of the US intent to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Occupied Jerusalem and called on the Jordanian government to intervene to prevent such a step.    MORE . . .
❸  ISRAELI  FORCES  STORM  PALESTINIAN  CITIES  AND  ARRESTS  10  PALESTINIANS  
Palestine News Network – PNN
December 5, 2017 ― The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested 10 Palestinians from different West Bank areas at dawn and last night.
___According to local sources in Hebron, the occupation forces arrested a 22 years old Palestinian during an incursion of Deir Samt town west of Hebron.
___Israeli forces stormed five houses in Badras town, west of Ramallah. They also searched the village of Bani Zeid.  Israeli forces stormed a cafe in Beit Jala terrorizing people inside.         MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ― ❸ (ᴀ)  HOW  ISRAEL  IS  DIGITALLY  POLICING  PALESTINIAN  MINDS
Al Jazeera English  
Dalia Hatuqa
December 5, 2017 ― In recent years, Israeli authorities have been arresting and holding hundreds of Palestinians it accuses of fanning the flames of violence in the occupied West Bank and Israel.
___This incitement, they say, comes in various forms: Facebook posts, media articles, even songs and poetry – and in recent months, all have landed their authors in jail.
[. . . .] This heightened digital policing has left one Palestinian citizen of Israel embroiled in a legal fiasco. Dareen Tatour, a 36-year-old poet, spent three months in jail and remains – more than two years in – under house arrest over a poem she posted on Facebook in 2015 about Palestinian resistance.      MORE . . .   ..    RELATED . . .

THE  POEM  FOR  WHICH  DAREEN  TATOUR  WAS  ARRESTED
Resist, My People, Resist Them
Resist, my people, resist them.
In Jerusalem, I dressed my wounds and breathed my sorrows
And carried the soul in my palm
For an Arab Palestine.
I will not succumb to the “peaceful solution,”
Never lower my flags
Until I evict them from my land.
I cast them aside for a coming time.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist the settler’s robbery
And follow the caravan of martyrs.
Shred the disgraceful constitution
Which imposed degradation and humiliation
And deterred us from restoring justice.
They burned blameless children;
As for Hadil, they sniped her in public,
Killed her in broad daylight.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist the colonialist’s onslaught.
Pay no mind to his agents among us
Who chain us with the peaceful illusion.
Do not fear doubtful tongues;
The truth in your heart is stronger,
As long as you resist in a land
That has lived through raids and victory
So Ali called from his grave:
Resist, my rebellious people.
Write me as prose on the agarwood;
My remains have you as a response.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist, my people, resist them.

― You can follow Dareen Tatour’s case on Facebook

“. . . an intentional policy to exacerbate the chronic shortage of electricity in Gaza . . .” (Aeyal Gross)

PALESTINIAN-GAZA-ISRAEL-CONFLICT
Flames engulf the fuel tanks of Gaza’s only power plant, hit by Israeli shelling, on July 29, 2014. (Photo: Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images)

❶ . Health Ministry: Gaza’s fuel shortage puts hospitals at serious risk

  • Background: “We Didn’t Want To Hear The Word ‘Calories'”: Rethinking Food Security, Food Power, And Food Sovereignty–Lessons From The Gaza Closure.” Berkeley Journal of International Law

❷ . Army blocks two roads near Hebron school, movement curtailed
❸ . Arresting 4 Jerusalemite children from Silwan
. . . ❸ ― (a) The Martyrdom of a Palestinian young man at Shu’fat Refugee Camp in Jerusalem
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . HEALTH  MINISTRY:  GAZA’S  FUEL  SHORTAGE  PUTS  HOSPITALS  AT  SERIOUS  RISK      
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 26, 2016
The spokesperson of Gaza’s health ministry said in a statement on Friday that the health ministry would face a difficult situation if fuel is not provided to hospitals in the few upcoming hours.
___Ashraf al-Qadra called upon all competent authorities to quickly intervene and provide fuel for Gaza’s hospitals, noting that the fuel crisis in Gaza is expected to have severe effects on the besieged enclave’s hospitals.
___The plead came two days after health services in a children’s hospital were suspended due to a lack of fuel to its generators.         More . . .     Related . . .

Gross, Aeyal, and Tamar Feldman. “We Didn’t Want To Hear The Word ‘Calories'”: Rethinking Food Security, Food Power, And Food Sovereignty–Lessons From The Gaza Closure.” Berkeley Journal Of International Law 33.2 (2015): 379-441.    ARTICLE.

[. . . .] . . . the movement of goods and people into and out of the Gaza Strip was restricted to a so-called humanitarian minimum. . .  Although framed at first as “sanctions,” the policy was subsequently referred to as “economic warfare.” In essence, it was designed, according to Israel, to press the residents of the Gaza Strip to pressure Hamas . . .
___ . . .  Since its occupation of Gaza following the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, Israel has controlled the land crossings as well as Gaza’s airspace and territorial waters. . . all border crossing points between Israel and the Gaza Strip have been shut except for the Erez Crossing . . .  and the Kerem Shalom Crossing, which is the sole passageway for consumer goods.
[. . . .]  ___In a September 2007 decision, the Israeli Security Cabinet stated, “The sanctions will be enacted following a legal examination, while taking into account both the humanitarian aspects relevant to the Gaza Strip and the desire to avoid a humanitarian crisis.” Hence, the closure policy was aimed at causing damage to the Gaza economy and bringing the population to the verge of a humanitarian crisis . . .  The underlying principles of this policy were challenged early on, in October 2007, in a petition brought before the Israel Supreme Court . . . which focused on the restrictions on the supply of fuel and electricity to the Gaza Strip, the petitioners argued that the deliberate worsening of the quality of life of the inhabitants of the Gaza Strip to a state of minimal existence for the sole purpose of putting pressure on Hamas constitutes collective punishment which is strictly prohibited under international law . . .  In its response, the state claimed that its closure policy is a legitimate form of “economic warfare,” and it presented a set of calculations it had used to establish the minimum humanitarian fuel needs in the Gaza Strip, including industrial diesel for the power plant. Yet this minimum was knowingly calculated based on figures below the average, but above the minimum need for electricity in the Gaza Strip and, therefore, reflected an intentional policy to exacerbate the chronic shortage of electricity in Gaza.
___The Supreme Court ruled that Israel’s positive obligations towards the Gaza Strip are based on three factors: (1) its control over the land crossings and borders; (2) Gaza’s almost complete dependency on Israel to supply its electricity, which had developed over the course of the prolonged occupation; and (3) the ongoing state of belligerence in Gaza . . .  the Court authorized the electricity and fuel restrictions . . . In so doing, it gave its stamp of approval to the closure policy in its entirety and de facto accepted the “humanitarian-minimum standard” as a legitimate benchmark   [. . . .]  

❷ . ARMY  BLOCKS  TWO  ROADS  NEAR  HEBRON  SCHOOL,  MOVEMENT  CURTAILED 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Nov. 26, 2016
The Israeli army Saturday blocked with cement cubes two roads in the vicinity of Tareq Ben Ziad school near the Ibrahimi mosque in the center of Hebron, south of the West Bank, according Rashad Muhtaseb, a local factory owner.
[. . . .]  The army put up cement cubes to close roads in the area, where several shops and factories are located, hampering as a result movement of people, mainly students.     ___Thousands of Israeli settlers are planning to converge on the Ibrahimi mosque and the old city of Hebron in the coming days to mark a Jewish event.      More . . .             Related . . . SETTLERS  TORCH  PALESTINIAN  FAMILY  HOME  IN  HEBRON       Palestine News Network – PNN      Nov. 22, 2016

children-hebron
Children walking past soldiers on their way to school, May 7, 2016 (Photo: International Solidarity Movement)

❸ . ARRESTING  4  JERUSALEMITE  CHILDREN  FROM  SILWAN      
Wadi Hilweh Information Center – Silwan
Nov. 24, 2016
The occupation forces arrested on Thursday four Jerusalemite children from the village of Silwan.
___Wadi Hilweh Information Center’s lawyer, Saleh Mheisen, explained that the Israeli forces arrested three children while heading home after school on charges of throwing stones. . . .
___Lawyer Mheisen added that the police released the three children after interrogating them for several hours on condition of house-arrest for 5 days and an unpaid bail of 5 thousand NIS for each.
___Lawyer Mheisen added that the forces also arrested 13-year old Jamal Mohammad Qaraeen and interrogated him for several hours on charges of throwing stones . . . .     More . . .
. . . ― (A) THE  MARTYRDOM  OF  a  PALESTINIAN  YOUNG  MAN  AT  SHU’FAT  REFUGEE  CAMP  IN  JERUSALEM
Wadi Hilweh Information Center – Silwan 
November 25, 2016
A young man passed away after being shot at Shu’fat Refugee Camp checkpoint north of Jerusalem.
___ Lawyer Mohammad Mahmoud said that the Martyr is 14-year old Mohammad Nabil Salam.
___Thaer Fasfoos, spokesman of Fateh movement in the Refugee Camp, said that the young men descended from a bus right before the checkpoint for unknown reasons before being shot by the occupation forces which led to his immediate Martyrdom.     More . . .

 

“. . . Those cities we love. Hanged with the noose by the blue guards. . . .” (Izz al-Din al-Manasra)

hebron-mospque
Sanctuary of Abraham or Ibrahimi Mosque, Hebron; staircase representing how teachers spread the word of the Prophet Muhammad. Rare original from the 11th century made of inlaid wood and no nails. (Photo: Rick Steves Blog)

❶ Israeli forces deliver stop-construction notices to residents of Hebron-area village

  • Background: “The Occupation: A Powerful And Self- Regulating Mechanism Of Organized Cruelty.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture

❷ Muslim Call to Prayer Stopped 86 Times at Ibrahimi Mosque [Hebron] in October
. . . ❷ ― (a) Israeli Soldiers Hurl Stones at Palestinian Primary School Children (VIDEO)
❸ Israel sentences Palestinian [Hebron] minor to life in prison, $500 thousand fine for killing Israeli
❹ Poetry by Izz al-Din al-Manasra
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAELI  FORCES  DELIVER  STOP-CONSTRUCTION  NOTICES  TO  RESIDENTS  OF  HEBRON-AREA  VILLAGE     
Ma’an News Agency    
Nov. 2, 2016  Israeli forces delivered notices earlier this week to several families in the southern occupied West Bank village of Idhna ordering the halt of construction on several homes.
___The public relations department of the Idhna municipality said that resident Abdullah Suleiman al-Masri received a stop construction notice . . .   The municipality added that Muhammad Yunis Tmeizeh also received a stop construction notice . . .
___Israeli forces regularly issue notices and leave them near houses without their owners’ knowledge, the Idhna municipality said, adding that it would provide its services to targeted residents and follow up on these notices with the appropriate parties.    More . . .     Related:   GOLDMAN   SACHS   IS   FUNDING   HEBRON   SETTLERS

  • Shulman, David. “The Occupation: A Powerful And Self- Regulating Mechanism Of Organized Cruelty.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 19.3 (2014): 88-93.   Source.  

The phrase “Obstacles to Successful Negotiations” has a somewhat distant ring to it. . . .  It’s an abstraction, and far too hopeful at that. Obstacles could, in theory, be removed. Maybe someday they will be. But, for now, anyone who knows the reality of what is happening on the ground in the south Hebron hills isn’t likely to think in terms of “obstacles.” There exists a system that is self-sustaining, multi-leveled, with overlapping feedback mechanisms and upheld by overwhelming brute force, and this system has one and only one rationale. We can defy it, and  sometimes we do achieve minor, though meaningful, victories in the micro-struggle for every inch of land; but we have no chance of undermining the system itself or satisfying its endless hunger.
___Let’s begin at Umm al-Ara’is, wholly typical of that reality. The village lands once extended over a large area in the southern Hebron hills, not far from Palestinian Susya. Most have been lost to the settlers, including a particularly fertile wadi that is today just under the settlement — technically, the illegal outpost — of Mitzpeh Yair. The settlers simply took over these fields and have been cultivating them, as if they were theirs, for over two years. It’s a case, in no way unusual here, of out-and-out theft. As in other such cases, the Civil Administration, that is, the Occupation authority, has declared these fields “in dispute” — a legal category that means, in effect, that they are out of bounds to the Palestinian owners, though the settlers have free access to them at any time. A ruling on the question of ownership will probably be made, eventually, by one or more of the relevant authorities, possibly the Ministry of Defense.
___Members of the large ‘ Awad family have the title deeds to these lands.
[. . . .]  The Occupation works on automatic pilot, like other self-regulating systems. It is by now far bigger and infinitely more malevolent than any individual, or group of individuals, operating within it. Still, within the system, there is ample room for individual acts of wickedness. We see them in south Hebron every week.
[. . . .]  “Crazy,” in this case, points both to the fundamental absurdity of what passes for reality in the south Hebron hills and to the utterly arbitrary nature of the rules the soldiers are sent to enforce, as the officer’s words clearly reveal.
___ Yet both “absurd” and “arbitrary” are here synonyms for “wicked,” framed by the wider goal of taking the land. Quite often that wider goal spills over into acts that are truly sadistic . . . .

MUSLIM  CALL  TO  PRAYER  STOPPED  86  TIMES  AT  IBRAHIMI  MOSQUE [Hebron] IN OCTOBER 
Palestine Chronicle     
Nov. 2, 2016  The Israeli occupation authorities prevented the call to prayer from being made at Hebron’s Ibrahimi Mosque 86 times last month with the excuse given was that the call to prayer “annoyed” illegal Jewish settlers during holiday periods, a Palestinian Authority report has revealed.
___The Israeli occupation authorities “ignore the feelings of the Muslims and well as international laws and conventions which guarantee the protection of holy sites and free access to them,” the PA explained.
___The Ibrahimi Mosque was divided into two parts after a US-born Jewish settler entered the prayer hall at dawn on Friday, February 25, 1994 and shot dead 29 Palestinians and wounded 150 others while they were praying.       More . . .   
. . .― (A) ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  HURL  STONES  AT  PALESTINIAN  PRIMARY  SCHOOL  CHILDREN  (VIDEO) 
Palestine Chronicle
Nov. 2, 2016  Israeli soldiers used slingshots to hurl stones at Palestinian school children they are deployed to protect, footage posted on YouTube shows.
___The video taken on 25 October at 13:05 and uploaded by AtTuwaniProject, shows Israeli soldiers using slingshots to throw stones at Palestinian primary school children who are on their way home from school between the villages of Tuba and Twaneh in the South Hebron Hills.       More . . .    

p1010109
Al Shuhada Street, once the main market street of Hebron, is today a ghost town with businesses boarded up and soldiers and a few tourists walking around. (Photo: Katie Duffus Blog)

ISRAELI  SENTENCES  PALESTINIAN  [Hebron]  MINOR  TO  LIFE  IN  PRISON,  $500  MILLION  FINE  FOR  KILLING  ISRAELI 
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 3, 2016  An Israeli court sentenced 16 year-old Palestinian Murad Badr Ideis to life in prison and a nearly $500,000 fine on Wednesday for carrying out a deadly stabbing attack in January.
___Ideis, a resident of the village of Beit Amra in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron, received the life sentence and a 1.75 million-shekel ($458,875) fine after being convicted of carrying a stabbing attack on Jan. 17, killing Dafna Meir, a 38-year-old Israeli woman living in the illegal settlement of Otniel.
[. . . .] The head of the Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs in Hebron, Ibrahim Najajra, called the sentencing unjust and said the sentence, as well as the huge fine, was part of an Israeli policy of revenge on the Palestinian people.
___Israeli forces demolished Ideis’ family home in Beit Amra in June.       More . . .

AT  NIGHT,”  BY  IZZIDDIN  AL-DIN  AL-MANASRA

At night I come to you,
at night I tempt you,
and your memory wounds me.
I weep for you
traveling toward your vineyards in my dream,
towards your mountain paths.
I slide onto your sandy roads like a snake,
leaving my traces before I die.

At night I speak, bringing the sea
to the mountain, reconciling thorns with lilies
and night guards
with people awaiting seaborne barbarians
or desert strangers, coming from oil wells, coming.
I yearn for you at night but green cities do not merge
with cities of flame; you never leave your exile
and I never enter it.
How can I reconcile our exiles with the
cities of green? Those cities we love.
Hanged with the noose by the blue guards.
Guarded by rubies, oil, and gold.
―Translated by May Jayyusi and Naomi Shihab Nye

IZZ  AL-DIN  AL-MANASRA was born in Hebron in 1946. He has been the Director of cultural programs in Jordanian radio, editor of Palestinian Affairs magazine, and worked as a professor of comparative literature in Constantine University in Algeria. He has published more than ten collections of poetry sine his first one, Ya Inab al-Khalil (O grapes of Hebron, 1968) ―all in an earthy and very direct language rich in alluisions to symbolic features of the homeland. . .  He has received several literary awards. In 2003 he was invited to represent Palestine at the Poetry International held in Rotterdam, Netherlands, were he read some of his poems in Arabic, with simultaneous Dutch and English translation.
From:  ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE.  Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

“. . . at the encampment of sorrow . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

PalFest 2010
Closed shops in Hebron old city. (Photo: Justin McIntosh)

❶ Settlers Set Up Tents near Jenin
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) Israeli forces escort settlers into Area A village
❷Palestinians forced to close shops in Hebron for Israeli Passover visits
❸Israeli forces open fire on fishermen, level land in Gaza
❹ Israel arrests Palestinian journalist en route to int’l conference
❺ Opinion/Analysis: ISRAEL’S  CONTINUED  PURSUITS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK
❻ POETRY by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶  SETTLERS  SET  UP  TENTS  NEAR  JENIN
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
April 26, 2016
Dozens of Israeli settlers on Tuesday broke into an abandoned military base to the south of Jenin, where they erected tents, according to local sources.
___Witnesses told WAFA that dozens of settlers accompanied by a military escort broke into Dothan, an abandoned military base to the south of Jenin, and set up tents, performed rituals, and chanted racist slogans against Arabs.
___To be noted, Israeli settlers and settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian Territories are illegal in international law.      MORE . . .  
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ)  ISRAELI  FORCES  ESCORT  SETTLERS  INTO  AREA  A  VILLAGE
Ma’an News Agency
April 26, 2016
Israeli settlers were escorted by armed military forces into the Palestinian village of al-Karmil in the southern occupied West Bank district of Yatta on Tuesday to visit a local park in direct violation of peace agreements, locals said.
___Head of Yatta’s city council Mousa Makhamrah told Ma’an that dozens of Israelis arrived from nearby illegal settlements to perform religious rituals at an ancient pool in the area.
___Al-Karmil’s park is located under full Palestinian jurisdiction in Area A, and Makhamrah warned that Israeli entrance into the area marked a grave breach of Palestinian sovereignty.      MORE . . .

❷ PALESTINIANS  FORCED  TO  CLOSE  SHOPS  IN  HEBRON  FOR  ISRAELI  PASSOVER  VISITS
Ma’an News Agency
April 26, 2016
Palestinian shop owners were forced to close their storefronts in Hebron Tuesday as Israeli politicians called for the annexation of the occupied city during visits by thousands of right-wingers for Passover.
___Hebron local and prominent activist Issa Amro told Ma’an that Israeli forces instructed shopkeepers in both the H1 and H2 areas of Hebron to remain closed.
___Amro said forcing shops to close in H1 — the area of the city under jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority — the Israeli authorities were supporting right-wing Israelis aiming to push Palestinian locals from the city.       MORE . . .  

❸ ISRAELI  FORCES  OPEN  FIRE  ON  FISHERMEN,  LEVEL  LAND  IN  GAZA
Ma’an News Agency
April 26, 2016
Israeli forces on Tuesday opened fire on Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the Gaza Strip as military forces leveled Palestinian land on the borderline with Israel, locals said.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli naval forces fired live ammunition at fishermen working off the coast of al-Zahra area of central Gaza. No injuries were reported.
___In the eastern area of the besieged enclave, locals said Israeli bulldozers entered Palestinian land near al-Shujaiyya and leveled the area.      MORE . . .  

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Palestinian journalist Omar Nazzal, member of the General Secretariat of the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate in the West Bank, arrested April 23. (Photo: Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network)

❹ ISRAEL  ARRESTS  PALESTINIAN  JOURNALIST  EN ROUTE  TO  INT’L  CONFERENCE
Mondoweiss
By Haggai Matar
April 25, 2016
Israel arrested a Palestinian journalist on Saturday while he was trying to leave the West Bank en route to Sarajevo for a meeting of the European Federation of Journalists.
___Omar Nazzal, a Ramallah-based independent journalist and a member of the board of the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate, was arrested before crossing Allenby Bridge into Jordan and has since been detained on “security charges,” Israel claimed.     MORE . . .

❺ Opinion/Analysis:  ISRAEL’S  CONTINUED  PURSUITS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
April 25, 2016
Palestinians and Israelis are experiencing a conflict over the Israeli army’s “pursuit” of wanted Palestinians in Area A. Meanwhile, Palestinian security agencies are asking Israelis to hand over security information in order for them to arrest and pursue wanted Palestinians themselves, but Israel is refusing and demands to do it itself. The PA is not afraid that it will lose what is left of its status and sovereignty over the West Bank.
___The Israeli army took advantage of the outbreak of the intifada since October 2015 and the expansion of the parameters of the Palestinian attacks against Israelis, causing the death of 33 Israelis and the wounding of over 250 others, to violate all areas of the West Bank under the pretext of the pursuit of wanted Palestinians. They did not distinguish between Areas A, B, and C.        MORE . . .   

“JOSEPH,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM

For you my Beloved
I cut tents with my own skin,
And at the encampment of sorrow
Water the rose nurseries
With tears of blood.

If the wind blows,
I question it.
And should it return,
I ask it to carry my greetings
And eagerly address it,
Even if it does not answer.

Peace be with you, my Beloved,
My Brethren, my Neighbours and my Friends,
Peace.
How fare you in the seasons of heat and cold?
How fare the children
And our dead comrades?
Have they, on the other side of the fence,
Got used to the long night and its silence?
How is our father Jacob?
Does he still, my heart, lean upon his sorrows,
One hand always on his cheek
Because of the long silence of grief,
And the other sunk deep in the shirt of blood?
O my Beloved, my Beloved,
Should the wind, out of tenderness, visit me,
And choose to be my messenger,
It shall stop by the tent of our father, Jacob,
And say that I, after kissing
His hands from the distance,
Bring him the glad tidings
Of the return of our beloved Joseph.
For it is written:
God and man
Are to meet on earth.

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 Amazon.
About Samih Al-Qasim

“. . . they say the wild birds ferried his blood to his family. . .” (Zuhair Abu Shaib)

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Disbelief: Pictured is the grieving mother of one of the four Palestinian children from the same family killed in a naval strike on the port of Gaza 17 July 2014. (Photo: Reuters)

❶ Child killed, brother injured by leftover Israeli ordnance
❷ Al-Qiq ends 94-day hunger strike after deal struck with Israel
❸ Amnesty International: Palestinians protest in Hebron against decades of severe restrictions
. . . . . ❸― (ᴀ) 22 years after the Ibrahimi mosque massacre, Palestinians still suffer consequences
❹ Distributing administrative demolition orders in the village of Esawyeh
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Frozen in Their Grief: On the Bereavement of Palestinian Families
❻ Poetry by Zuhair Abu Shaib
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
CHILD  KILLED,  BROTHER  INJURED  BY  LEFTOVER  ISRAELI  ORDNANCE
Feb. 26, 2016
Five-year-old Palestinian boy was killed and his six-year-old brother was badly injured in an explosion in the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday night. The blast in Jabaliya refugee camp was caused by unexploded Israeli ordnance from the 2014 Gaza war.     More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
AL-QIQ  ENDS  94-DAY  HUNGER  STRIKE  AFTER  DEAL  STRUCK  WITH  ISRAEL
Feb. 26, 2016
Killian Redden
Imprisoned Palestinian hunger-striker Muhammad al-Qiq on Friday ended a grueling 94-day hunger strike that has brought him close to death after his lawyers struck an eleventh hour deal with the Israeli authorities.
___Israel’s six-month administrative detention sentence against al-Qiq will not be renewed, while his lawyers managed to push the date of his release back to May 21, he said.     More . . .

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Israeli soldiers arrest Professor Gadi Algazi at a demonstration in Hebron calling on the army to ”open the Hebron Ghetto,’ Hebron, West Bank, February 20, 2016. (Photo: Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

PALESTINE NEWS NETWORK
AMNESTY  INTERNATIONAL:  PALESTINIANS  PROTEST  IN  HEBRON  AGAINST  DECADES  OF  SEVERE  RESTRICTIONS
Today, February 26, Palestinian residents and activists in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron are holding demonstrations marking 22 years since the Israeli authorities first closed al-Shuhada Street, formerly the city’s commercial centre.
___They are protesting against illegal Israeli settlements and demanding the removal of the restrictions on their movement, which are applied only to Palestinians and not to Israeli settlers. . . . October 2015, the Israeli [occupation] forces (ÎOF) intensified the long-standing restrictions, declaring parts of Hebron’s Old City a “closed military zone”    More . . .
. . . . . ❸― (ᴀ) INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY MOVEMENT
22  YEARS  AFTER  THE  IBRAHIMI  MOSQUE  MASSACRE,  PALESTINIANS  STILL  SUFFER  CONSEQUENCES
Feb. 25, 2016
On the 25th of February 1994, a US citizen residing in the illegal Kiryat Arba settlement entered the Ibrahimi mosque . . . opened fire on the Palestinians that were crammed inside for the prayer. He killed 29 men and boys and injured dozens . . . .
___In 1997, a protocol was signed between Israel and the PLO, dividing Hebron into two areas: “H1”, controlled by Israeli forces, and “H2”, under Palestinian control
___22 years later, all measures that were declared in Hebron on the 25th of February, 1994 are still enforced, except for the curfew. And settlers are more than ever taking over the city, with the compliance of the Israeli government.      More . . .
WADI HILWEH INFORMATION CENTER – SILWAN
DISTRIBUTING  ADMINISTRATIVE  DEMOLITION  ORDERS  IN  THE  VILLAGE  OF  ESAWYEH
Feb. 25, 2016
Joint crews of occupation municipality and Special Forces hung administrative demolition orders on several residential establishments in the village of Esawyeh on Wednesday.
___Mohammad Abu Hummos, member of follow-up committee in the village of Esawyeh, explained that occupation municipality’s crews raided Abu Rayaleh neighborhood in the village and took pictures of the entire neighborhood before hanging administrative demolition orders on 9 houses.    More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
PALESTINE CHRONICLE
FROZEN  IN  THEIR  GRIEF:  ON  THE  BEREAVEMENT  OF  PALESTINIAN  FAMILIES
Dr. Samah Jabr
Feb. 25, 2016
While the world was celebrating New Year’s Eve in 2015, with all of its promise for the coming year, dozens of Palestinian families were receiving the frozen bodies of their Shaheeds (martyrs): children killed by Israelis in the recent political upheaval.
___. . . this article is an attempt to explore the experience of grief among victims of our political reality- not an essay on the meaning of martyrdom . . . . [Palestinians glorify] the individuals who have been killed resisting the occupation and use the term “Shaheed” to draw attention to the circumstances of their death. . . .
___Much silence surrounds the grief of the families of Palestinian fighters. The Palestinians perceive the Israeli authorities as taking sadistic satisfaction in our suffering.   More . . .

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

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

“. . . even more proud of guns and treachery. . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

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Street of shops in Arab Quarter, East Jerusalem, in danger of losing all customers and becoming a ghost town (Photo: Harold Knight, November 9, 2015)

❶ Israel to confiscate vast tract of land in Jericho
❷ Israeli forces detain 25 Palestinians across West Bank
❸ Home demolitions in Jerusalem
❹ Analysis: Hebron: land, settlements and settlers
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Israeli restrictions and escalating violence threaten to turn Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter into a ghost town
❻ Poetry by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAEL  TO  CONFISCATE  VAST  TRACT  OF  LAND  IN  JERICHO
Jan. 20, 2016
Israel is set to declare 1,500 dunams (370 acres) of land in the occupied West Bank district of Jericho as “state land,” Israel’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) announced Wednesday.
___The plans were revealed earlier in the day by Israeli Army Radio, which said the land was located north of the illegal Israeli settlement of Almog and had been used by settlers over the past 20 years.
___COGAT confirmed the plans were in their “final stages,” and said they were in accordance with a political ratification.
___Israeli Army Radio reportedly said: “This is a very sensitive issue which will likely garner harsh critique from Europe and the United States, and of course from the Palestinian Authority.”    More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  25  PALESTINIANS  ACROSS  WEST  BANK
Jan. 20, 2016
Israeli forces detained at least 25 Palestinians in predawn raids in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank on Wednesday, Palestinian and Israeli sources said.
____In Tulkarem in the northern West Bank, Israeli forces detained seven Palestinians from the city’s Thinaba neighborhood, Palestinian security sources said. . . .
___The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society said in a statement that Israeli forces detained five teenagers from East Jerusalem. . . .    More . . .
ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
HOME  DEMOLITIONS  IN  JERUSALEM
Jan. 21, 2016
Dozens of Israeli soldiers raided Jabal al Baba, situated east of the Jerusalem-area village of Al Ezarriya . . . Three families, those of Hajja Hamda Abu Kateba, Ali Abu Kateba and Ghassan al Jahaleen, were forced out of their homes, which were then demolished under the pretext of construction without Israeli-issued permits. . . .
___Just yesterday Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah slammed the displacement of Palestinian Bedouin communities. In a statement the prime minister said . . . “Israel’s systematic violation of international laws is no longer acceptable by the international community.”   More . . .

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Israeli guard tower and Apartheid wall, center of Hebron (Photo: Harold Knight, November 7, 2015)

Analysis
ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
HEBRON:  LAND,  SETTLEMENTS  AND  SETTLERS
Sergio Yahni
Jan. 19,2016
For the last two weeks Palestinian and international activists have staged a sit-in at the entrance of Hebron’s Shuhada Street to protest new policies implemented in the city that oblige residents of Shuhada Street and the nearby Tel Rumeida neighbourhood to register with Israeli military authorities. . . .
___The checkpoint leads into the Tel Rumeida neighbourhood, which Israeli authorities declared a closed military zone on November 1, 2015. This closure forced all local residents to register and be assigned numbers in order to travel to their homes. . . .
___Those measures allegedly come to protect a few hundred Israeli settlers living near Shuhada Street and in the Tel Rumeida area.
___Settlements are the most immediate problem faced by Palestinians in the West Bank. More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
MONDOWEISS
ISRAELI  RESTRICTIONS  AND  ESCALATING  VIOLENCE  THREATEN  TO  TURN  JERUSALEM’S  MUSLIM  QUARTER  INTO  A  GHOST  TOWN
Allison Deger
Jan. 20, 2016
Green metal panels shutter recently out of business storefronts along al-Wad Street, a narrow stone road inside of Jerusalem’s Old City walls that links Damascus Gate to the holy sites of the Western Wall and the al-Aqsa mosque . . . . six stores on al-Wad Street alone have closed since October . . . .
___The famed “best hummus joint in Jerusalem,” Abu Shukri’s, has taken to half-days. . . . after the loss of Jewish-Israeli customers who no longer venture into Palestinian sections of the Old City. Even more business may shut their doors in the coming weeks, threatening to turn the Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter into a ghost town.
___“Palestinians are afraid to come and the tourists, if they come they don’t stop and they don’t talk to us,” said Jihad Rajabi who owns a t-shirt and souvenir store on al-Wad street. When Israeli police set up more than a dozen new checkpoints inside of East Jerusalem neighborhoods last October, Rajabi lost many customers. More . . .

“ENEMY,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like sakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available From Amazon.com.

Call to prayer, early afternoon, Jericho (Video: Harold Knight, November 8, 2016)